Obama’s obvious attempt to upstage Clinton came in spite of Marc Ambinder’s suggestion in the Atlantic this morning that the Administration wanted to expand her role. Based on advance copies of excerpts of Clinton’s speech, Ambinder wrote:
Clinton portrays herself in the speech as the integrator of President Obama's approach to foreign affairs - as his partner in developing policy and as his prime mover in implementing it. Make no mistake: the White House sanctioned this speech, which was blueprinted by the secretary's policy planning staff. They want Clinton's public role to expand. Where George Mitchell speaks to Israel, where Richard Holbrooke negotiates in middle Asia, where Jim Jones cajoles leaders behind the scenes, it's Clinton who directs this minuet and who communicates with the public and the world about America.
Following the CBS Evening News, I watched Jim Lehrer’s News Hour, and Lehrer actually featured a brief excerpt from Clinton’s speech in which she addressed the Iran situation. But I had to return to Politico for any significant coverage of the speech. Ben Smith reported:
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s first major policy address Wednesday was a tour of American foreign policy that also served to highlight her stature inside the Obama administration.
With her highest-profile deputies – special envoys Richard Holbrooke and George Mitchell – seated at her feet, Clinton offered an audience at the Council on Foreign Relations a mixture of tough talk, especially for Iran and the Arab states, and promises of a broadened diplomatic agenda as part of an internationalist foreign policy that puts cooperation over confrontation and quiet diplomacy over public agitation for human rights.
Watch video of Clinton’s speech below: