« Who Won the Senate Debate? | The RCP Blog Home Page | The Heads Blog 2008 »

Quote(s) of the Day

A special doubleheader edition courtesy of Mary Ann Sieghart in the Times of London. Sieghart looks at the possibility of Hillary Clinton and Ségolãne Royal in France joining German Chancellor Angela Merkel in a gender-busting shift in world leadership.

Sieghart is theoretically excited by the idea of a trio of women becoming such geo-political power brokers, but she has reservations about Mrs. Clinton:

I have met Hillary a couple of times and, although she is formidably intelligent, there is something scarily inauthentic about her. True, she couldn't help being overshadowed by Bill, who lights up a room, leaving everyone else in the shade. But still, she seemed cold and artificial to me, her face a mask, her eyes unlit by her smile.

Everything about her seemed manufactured, from her looks to her small talk. There was no spontaneity, no natural warmth. She reminded me of a porcelain doll: a highly intelligent one, of course, but a doll nonetheless.

And later, Sieghart writes this about Chancellor Merkel's toughness:

Merkel, too, was underestimated at the start yet is proving to be a highly successful Chancellor, given the constraints of having to work in coalition with the Social Democrats. Dismissed by Helmut Kohl as das Mädchen (the girl), she has transformed German foreign policy, raised the retirement age and reformed the health system, all in just over a year. One American diplomat is rumoured to have said that "Merkel has the biggest balls in Europe".