Like Robert Farley, I have my doubts:
But here’s my question; why would Clinton want to be Vice President? Wouldn’t Senate Majority Leader (and I suspect this could be arranged) be a more powerful position? Wouldn’t she have more influence over policymaking there than in the Vice President’s office? I mean this question in all seriousness; Clinton seems to be indicating that she’d like the spot, but I’m befuddled as to why she’d take it, much less fight for it. I suppose that it sets her up for another run in 2016, or perhaps more importantly precludes the emergence of a Vice Presidential rival that year, but marginal improvement on her chances in eight years would seem small recompense for the powerlessness of the VP slot. Let’s remember that Vice Presidents have exactly as much power as the President gives them, and if it’s true that Obama really doesn’t want Hillary (and I wouldn’t credit such assertions too heavily at this point), then he certainly isn’t likely to grant her much power in his administration.
I don’t think her odds at the Senate leadership are really all that good (too much fighting with Obama-endorsing senior members at this point) but certainly if I were Hillary Clinton I would want nothing to do with the vice presidency. If Obama becomes president, she’s an unusually high-profile senator for as long as she wants to be, one whose national following and large donor base can let her exercise a lot of influence in congress. And if Obama loses to John McCain, she can run again in 2012 and say she told us so.
My suspicion is that hints from the Clinton camp of interest in a unity ticket have more to do with the desires of the campaign staff for a better crack at executive branch jobs in an Obama administration. After all, Hillary has a solid fallback job as a Senator, that’s not true for everyone on the team.