Clinton, Rice top poll of likely US presidential contenders

Washington, Feb 15 (IANS) The last two secretaries of state, Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Condoleezza Rice, top a new list of potential contenders in the next US presidential election in 2016, according to new survey.

Clinton and Rice were one and two in a Fox News national survey that simply asked whether this "person would make a good president or not?"

Out of a list of a dozen possible 2016 White House hopefuls, 55 percent of people questioned said that Clinton, who stepped down earlier this month as secretary of state, would make a good president. Forty-two percent said Clinton would not make a good president.

Even though Clinton has said time and again that she would not run in the 2016 election, there's already intense speculation over whether Clinton will make a second bid for president.

In second place in the survey was Rice, who served as national security adviser and then secretary of state under President George W. Bush, with 43 percent saying she would make a good president and an equal amount disagreeing.

Following Clinton and Rice in the polls at 37 percent were New Jersey's Republican Governor Chris Christie and House member Paul Ryan, last year's Republican vice presidential nominee, with Vice President Joe Biden at 35 percent.

About a quarter questioned in the survey said former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio, the state's junior senator, would make good presidents. Louisiana's Indian American governor Bobby Jindal and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo were both at 16 percent.

Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick were at 6 percent, with Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley at 5 percent.

Breaking down the numbers, 83 percent of self-identified Democrats questioned said Clinton would make a good president, with Biden in second place at 60 percent.

Among self-identified Republicans, 62 percent said Ryan would make a good president, with 54 percent saying the same thing about Rice.

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