Reacting to a new book quoting Karl Rove as saying she will be the 2008 Democratic nominee for president, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton said Monday that President Bush's chief political strategist "spends a lot of time obsessing about me."
The former first lady also said she believed Rove, national GOP chairman Ken Mehlman and other Republicans are using her to divert attention from Republican problems as the 2006 congressional elections approach.
"Karl Rove is a brilliant strategist. So, if I were thinking about this," she told WROW-AM radio in Albany, "I'd say, 'why are they spending so much time talking about me?'
"What they're hoping is that all of their missteps, which are now numbering in the hundreds, are going to somehow be overlooked because people, instead of focusing on the '06 election, will jump ahead and think about the next one," said Clinton, D-N.Y.
In the new book out Monday from Regnery Publishing, "Strategery" by Bill Sammon, Rove is quoted as saying: "Anybody who thinks that she's not going to be the candidate is kidding themselves."
Rove is also quoted as says he thinks Clinton could have difficulty in the general election, in part, because there is a "brittleness about her."
Clinton wouldn't say if she would run for president in 2008, saying she is completely focused on her re-election bid to the Senate this year.
By Marc Humbert