As his wife and daughter mull their next professional moves, Bill Clinton is telling friends that Chelsea Clinton and husband Marc Mezvinsky are "working on" fusing their gametes to create a new organism that will carry forth a significant number of Clinton chromosomes to a new generation of maybe-maybe-not politicians. The elder Clinton offered this update on his offspring's progress toward perpetuating the species to a fellow guest at an awards ceremony at the University of Limerick, the New York Post's Page Six reports. This is an important development in the American social organization, because while the presidency is officially not a hereditary position, it pays to be born into certain kinship groups. At the fancy party, the Post reports, Clinton was less forthcoming over whether his own mate would attempt to recapture his old position. Will Hillary run for president in 2016? "You'll have to ask her," Clinton said.
So far, she's not answering. Hillary Clinton will quit her job as Secretary of State soon after President Obama begins his second term, a move many see as preparation for running for president in 2016. But she has tried to avoid answering questions about her presidential ambitions, saying things like, "Maybe I’ll get a decorating show." Anthropological research indicates organisms seeking to claim the apex of American society must not be seen as "wanting it too much," a phenomenon that appears to be especially true of the kin of previous dominant societal members. (This may be due to the necessity of appearing to have "earned it" when competing for an officially non-hereditary role.)
And while Hillary is coy about her future plans, daughter Chelsea — an occasional NBC reporter — is even more shy, leaving allies to promote the idea her own future candidacy. When a local report suggested the youngest Clinton might run for Congress in New York's 18th district, a Clinton spokesman told the New York Daily News late last year that "This is 100% false." This after Hillary's longtime aide (and Anthony Weiner husband) Huma Abedin told Vogue that Chelsea only recently grasped the significance of her genetic inheritance:
"As she’s been exposed to the foundation and to what her father’s doing with his post-presidential life... I think a light switched on: This is the legacy I’m going to inherit. To say it is an incredible one is an understatement. She now knows that in 20, 30 years, everything about her father’s legacy is in her hands. It’s going to be Chelsea’s responsibility to carry that torch. This is the core of what her grandmother encouraged her to do: embrace her inheritance."
As Chelsea lays the groundwork to claim her inheritance, it's only natural that in the meantime she would ensure her genetic material is passed on well into the 2048 election cycle, and that her father would monitor her progress.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.