After announcing that she is running for president on Sunday, Hillary Clinton and her staff headed out on the highway to campaign in Iowa, driving in a van nicknamed “Scooby” after the Scooby Do Mystery Machine van in the widely popular Scooby Do cartoon series.
The road ahead for Clinton will soon become a mystery adventure tour fraught with a new political challenges as she tries to persuade Americans to vote for another Democrat as their next U.S. president.
Taking to the highway to drive to Iowa is a clear break from the past for Clinton.
During her last election campaign, Clinton was nowhere near a “Scooby” van and flew across Iowa and several other swing states.
Today’s image of a “down to earth” Clinton traveling across the U.S. by van sets a new tone for the Clinton campaign machine that seeks to drive its way back to the White House where Hillary served as first lady under President from 1993-2001.
Unlike her last presidential campaign from 2007-2008 when she lost in a close primary contest to Barack Obama, today Clinton is the outright leader in her bid to become the next Democratic candidate for U.S. president.
According to a March 26-31st poll taken by North Carolina based Public Policy Polling, Clinton has a sizeable lead over all of the other potential Democratic challengers.
Clinton has 54 percent compared to Elizabeth Warren at 14 percent, Joe Biden at 7 percent, Bernie Sanders at 6 percent, Martin O’Malley at 3 percent, and Jim Webb at 2 percent.
Clinton also has a 3-9 point lead over a long list of Republican candidates but her lead over Republican candidates has decreased from a 7-10 point lead in February.
Republican Senators Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) already announced their candidacies to run for president while Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) will soon announce his own candidacy on Monday.
All three Republican candidates rose to power with tea-party support.
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) wasted no time and already took some political shots at Clinton after claiming in a statement that a Clinton administration would be no different than an Obama administration.
“Hillary Clinton represents the failed policies of the past and there’s going to be a very clear choice to make in 2016: Does America want a third term or are we ready for strong conservative leadership to make America great again?” Cruz said.
On March 23rd Senator Cruz announced his intention to run for president at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va and later went on the Late Night with Seth Meyers show where he shared his views on global warming and cited faulty satellite data over a 17 year span, claiming there’s been “zero warming”.
Cruz’s controversial climate theories were later debunked in an interesting article over at Grist.org.
Hillary Clinton has supported President Obama’s environmental policies over the years such as the Clean Air Act and has been critical of fossil fuel subsidies while supporting renewables.
But some environmentalists in the Democrat Party are disappointed with her support of domestic fossil fuel production such as natural gas.
Besides environmental policies, Clinton will face a host of other domestic and foreign policy issues on the campaign trail before election day in 2016.
From 2009-2013 Hillary Clinton served as Secretary of State under President Clinton and dealt with a string of volatile foreign policy issues in Libya, Egypt, and Syria.
On Meet the Press aired yesterday Secretary of State John Kerry avoided getting involved in talking about politics but admitted that Clinton did a good job as secretary.
Kerry later described Clinton as “highly qualified” and said that he’s confident that she’ll wage a formidable campaign.