Top GOP talk show host says Clinton is "prohibitive favorite" for 2016

Hugh Hewitt, author of “The Queen: The Epic Ambition of Hillary and the Coming of a Second Clinton Era,” weighs in on the question
Hugh Hewitt, author of “The Queen: The Epic... 06:55

(CBS News) - One of talk radio's leading Republican voices says Hillary Clinton is the "prohibitive favorite" in the 2016 election, and in a new book, "The Queen, the Epic Ambition of Hillary and the Coming of a Second Clinton Era," provides some campaign advice.

Among his suggestions: if the nominee is Ted Cruz, don't debate him.

"Senator Cruz has won nine Supreme Court arguments, John. You don't do that because you're lucky. You win nine Supreme Court arguments because you're really, really smart. And I advise in 'The Queen' if he's the nominee that [Clinton] should simply reject debates with him because he'll cut her up muscle and joint. I mean he'll carve her up. He's that good."

Hewitt has interviewed virtually every GOP candidate and potential candidate on his syndicated talk show "The Hugh Hewitt Show". Talking to Face the Nation host John Dickerson, Hewitt weighed on the top Republicans in the field.

Republicans will have to play “very good p... 03:46

On Rubio: "Senator Rubio for example is fluent in the way that every few people are in the precise threats posed by, not just by al-Qaida in the Iranian peninsula or al-Qaida in Iraq or the Islamic State."

On Walker: "Scott Walker has a great affection among people who listen to my radio show for having endured the gauntlet."

On Christie: "Chris Christie has vanished but he'll be back....explosive in his potential in New Hampshire, big personality."

On Huckabee: "Mike Huckabee is the most charming man. I'm sure you've interviewed him, am I not right?"

On Jeb Bush: "My heart sang as a Republican, as a conservative, when Jeb Bush without prompting gave part of his announcement speech in Spanish."

Regardless of who the Republicans choose to be their nominee, Hewitt says Hillary Clinton will be tough to beat.

"We will have to play very good politics against Hillary Clinton because she has money and machine, most of the media likes her. She's got this amazing map that's on her side. Republicans have to win Florida and Virginia and Ohio and Colorado. She's a prohibitive favorite."

But one area where Clinton may be vulnerable, Hewitt says, is her record at the State Department.

"She left the State Department on the night of the Benghazi attack at 1 A.M. with her ambassador dead, her second in command retreating, the annex under attack. She had talked to Mr. Hicks once and I ask why don't you call him back? And I've asked everyone this question," he said.

The Republican nominee will have to prove he or she can respond to attacks from abroad, Hewitt told Dickerson.

"I think her record at State, which was fairly catastrophic is a vulnerability but there needs to be not just her vulnerability, there needs to be someone who can say I won't fold at a crucial moment," he said.

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Hewitt called Clinton the "presumptive favorite" among 2016 candidates-- he called her the "prohibitive favorite"