Donald Lambro

WASHINGTON - It is a sign of Barack Obama's receding presidency that Hillary Clinton is drawing more attention from the national news media and political power brokers.

As the president goes through the speech-making and ceremonial motions of what is left in his second term, most of the talk here is about her carefully-calculated, emerging bid for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination.

The Washington press corps can become quickly bored by a presidency that seldom makes news anymore, and Obama now rarely makes the front pages of our big city daily newspapers. At least not lately.

The Washington Post's front page, lead story Thursday is a case in point. The headline: "Clintons take on critics in GOP," followed by two subheads about the larger story at play here: "Clearer Signs of a Candidacy," and "Next, a book tour that could be a rehearsal."

Obama was trying to make news of his own Wednesday, but not the kind that lands on the front page, or leads the nightly news.

He was in Tarrytown, N.Y., talking about spending more money on the nation's infrastructure and creating jobs that are in short supply nowadays. He's talked about it before, with little effect. The Post buried the story on page 2.

Hillary's politically hot right now and clearly getting more attention -- from Democrats, who see her as the only hope of holding the White House, and from Republicans who say we can't afford eight more years of Democratic rule.

The former secretary of State, who stepped down from her post in February, 2013, has been on a whirlwind tour ever since, hitting her party's key special interest groups. Womens' organizations one day, and the Israeli lobby the next.

Her husband, former President Bill Clinton, has been making the rounds, too, talking up her credentials and defending her from Republican attacks, like the one GOP strategist Karl Rove fired this week that raised questions about the state of her health.

While Obama was out of town for a couple of days, the Clintons were speaking to major venues, and well, clearly campaigning for Obama's job.

Bill Clinton was here touting Hillary's work on boosting educational opportunities for low-income children. And talking up his own job-growth record in his second term -- a not so veiled reminder of Obama's failure to strengthen economic growth.

Hillary was addressing the pro-Israel American Jewish Committee, struggling to make the case that as secretary of State, she worked to slow Iran's nuclear development.

But her record or accomplishments on that score, and as the nation's chief diplomat, is pretty thin.


Donald Lambro

Donald Lambro is chief political correspondent for The Washington Times.