The Democratic presidential nominee front runner changesherÂ official name for political expediency about asoften as Barack Obama switched his position on gay marriage.
In a mostly unnoticed bit of political re-branding, the Clintoncampaign has informedÂ the Washington Post to now call herâ€œHillary Clinton,â€ instead of theâ€œHillary Rodham Clintonâ€ moniker shehas used since 1993.
This is actually the former New Yorksenatorâ€™s fourthÂ switcheroo sincemarrying Mr. Bill in 1975. Â She kept her maiden nameafter the nuptials and throughout Clintonâ€™sfirst term as Arkansas governor.
But that feminist stance alienated voters and contributed toClintonâ€™s losing re-election bid in1980.Â â€œI learned the hard way thatsome voters in Arkansas were seriously offended by the fact that Ikept my maiden name,â€ she wrote years later in herautobiography.
So Hillary â€œevolved.â€
When her hubby successfully ran for governor again in 1982Hillary opted for â€œMrs. BillClinton.â€
“I don’t have to change my name,â€ shetold one journalist. Â “I’ve been Mrs.Bill Clinton. I kept the professional name Hillary Rodham in my lawpractice, but now I’m going to be taking a leave of absencefrom the law firm to campaign full time for Bill and I’ll beMrs. Bill Clinton. I suspect people will be getting tired ofhearing from Mrs. Bill Clinton.”
Once she and Mr. Bill were safely ensconced in thegovernorâ€™s mansion in 1983â€œMrs. Bill Clintonâ€ started going byjust Hillary Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton. During the 1992presidential campaign she did not object when the press mostlycalled her, â€œHillary Clinton.â€
But the same week President Clinton was inaugurated the newFirst Lady’s press secretary told reporters to useâ€œHillary Rodham Clinton.â€
New York Post columnist Richard Johnson, who onSundayÂ noted the de-Rodhamizaiton,Â quoteda Democrat saying, â€œI think [adding Rodham] wasa feminist statement.â€
Dropping it, of course, might give her more appeal to centristvoters in the general election. But an unidentified campaign workerbee told Johnson that the requested name change was not reallyaÂ request, just a clarification. Really? Kind of likeObama supporting, then opposing and finally endorsing gay marriagewas â€œevolvingâ€ not pandering?
â€œThe Washington Post asked us if we had apreference,â€ the aide insisted to Johnson.â€œWe said Hillary Clinton was fine. Itdoesnâ€™t mean that saying Hillary Rodham Clintonis incorrect.â€