To no one's surprise, Bill Clinton says if he could run again for president, he would.
Alas, for this career and congenital campaigner, the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution prohibits anyone from being elected to the office more than twice.Talking to reporters aboard Air Force One en route home from his Florida vacation, Clinton said that although he supports term limits for presidents, he thinks a two-term president should be allowed another chance at the White House after being out of office awhile.
A trial balloon, perhaps? Clinton is only 52, and Ronald Reagan greatly raised the acceptable age limit for a president when he turned 69 a few weeks after his inauguration.
Again, alas, the Republican Congress that proposed the 22nd Amendment in 1947 wasn't taking any chances on another Democratic four-termer like Franklin Roosevelt, and this Republican Congress, given its aversion to Clinton, isn't going to take any chances that the man it impeached will come back for a third term.
Vice president, assuming Clinton would accept the demotion, seems to be an option: take the second spot on the ticket and hope that the new president, well, croaked, an election-free means of regaining the Oval Office. But, yet another alas: The 12th Amendment says no person constitutionally ineligible to be president can be vice president.
No one who has followed Clinton's career believes he is finished with elective politics. The president says he envies his wife's political options, so -- who knows? -- if being senator from New York works out for Hillary Clinton, maybe there will be a second Clinton in the Senate down the road.