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Posted Jan 26, 2012, 6:56 pm
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will quit if President Barack Obama wins a second term in office, she told members of her department Thursday.
Clinton dismissed speculation that she plans to run as vice-president in 2012 or president in 2016, saying that she was tired of being on "the high wire of American politics."
"I have made it clear that I will certainly stay on until the president nominates someone and that transition can occur" if Obama wins re-election, she told a town hall meeting.
"But I think after 20 years, and it will be 20 years, of being on the high wire of American politics and all of the challenges that come with that, it would be probably a good idea to just find out how tired I am."
However, she reportedly added: "Everyone always says that when they leave these jobs."
A State Department official later confirmed Clinton's statement to Yahoo News.
Clinton has repeatedly stated her intention to serve only one term as secretary of state, according to Politico. Her high approval ratings – she was recently voted Gallup's Most Admired Woman of 2011 – have led to suggestions that she should go on to take a higher role in the Democratic leadership.
But, like today, Clinton has indicated that she plans to withdraw from politics altogether.
A year ago she told PBS's Tavis Smiley that her position was a "24/7 job" and to do it for eight years would be "very challenging." Asked what she would do instead, Clinton answered:
There's so many things I'm interested in, I mean, really going back to private life and spending time reading, and writing, and maybe teaching, doing some personal travel, not the kind of travel where you bring along a couple of hundred people with you.