WASHINGTON — The way former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina sees it, if former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D) were to face a woman in the 2016 general election, Clinton wouldn’t be able to use a “whole set” of issues to her advantage.
Fiorina, who is currently mulling whether to run for president in 2016, made the comments at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast on Thursday. Polling has shown Fiorina trailing most of the GOP field in the 2016 primary.
“I think that if Hillary Clinton were to face a female nominee, there are a whole set of things that she won’t be able to talk about. She won’t be able to talk about being the first woman president, she won’t be able to talk about the war on women without being challenged,” Fiorina said. “She won’t be able to play the gender card. And so what she will have to run on is her track record, her accomplishments, her candor and trustworthiness, and policies.”
That, Fiorina added, is “what elections should be run on, not identity politics. Not what you look like, but who you are and what you believe.”
Other Republicans have also argued that part of Fiorina’s strength as a possible contender against Clinton is that she can cancel out any attacks centered on gender.
“She’s the most aggressive Republican candidate when it comes to someone attacking Hillary Clinton,” Iowa Republican party former political director Craig Robinson recently told The Guardian. “She’s not bashful about going right after her. That’s made people sit up and notice —the fact that Hillary Clinton is being critiqued by another woman.”
During the same breakfast, Fiorina indicated that if she did decide to run for president she would angle herself as a conservative pro-life candidate, like she did when she ran for senate in California.
“A conservative can win with moderates as well as conservatives. Conservatives can reach Independents and Democrats,” Fiorina said.