Campaign advisers say the likelihood of a campaign, long at 98 percent (she never really hesitated, according to one person close to her), went to 100 percent right after Christmas, when Clinton approved a preliminary budget and several key hires.2. And there is no serious competition brewing:
Clinton will enter the Democratic race with a bang — and virtually no opposition to speak of. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who could mount a serious campaign from the left, has said she won’t run, and is making no behind-the-scenes preparations. Vice President Joe Biden says he might very well run — but mainly wants his name in the mix in case Clinton implodes.In my view, the only real question is how and when Warren and Biden announce their support. And would it not instantly and dramatically unite the party if they both made their Hillary endorsements at her announcement ceremony? Just asking.
3. For better or worse, running mate talk is already percolating, and the top two names at this time are aimed at shoring up Colorado or Virginia:
Some advisers are already privately talking up potential running mates, with Sens. Michael Bennet of Colorado and Tim Kaine of Virginia dominating the early speculation.
Some advisers expect a push for diversity on the ticket. So the shortlist also is expected to include Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, Labor Secretary Tom Perez, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and perhaps California Attorney General Kamala Harris, who is running for U.S. Senate.His name is not mentioned here, but unless he has made his intentions clear already, Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio could be also a powerful choice, both for his working class populism and twice-elected popularity in his crucial home state.
4. Jeb is considered the biggest threat:
Bill Clinton is already deeply engaged in the campaign, warning that Jeb Bush is a real threat, while New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is probably just a sideshow. The former president got a heads-up from the camp of President George H.W. Bush a few days before former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush made his surprise Facebook announcement in December that he would “actively explore” a campaign.Unless...yet another Bush is actually the candidate the Clintons do want to face, which is why they are casually and repeatedly saying the opposite. Beware, Republican primary voters...it could be a trap from confirmed political mastermind Bill Clinton!
5. As suggested before, the official announcement is still more than a couple of months away:
Hillary Clinton is in the final stages of planning a presidential campaign that will most likely be launched in early April and has made decisions on most top posts, according to numerous Democrats in close contact with the Clintons and their aides.Offhand out-of-the-loop prediction: there is so little surprise left that they may end up springing the announcement on America a bit earlier than that.
Check out today's full article at Politico for much more.