After being gone for a month due to illness, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton returned to work on January 7 to cheers and gifts.
Clinton who first went on leave for a stomach virus, was delayed on her return when she fell resulting in a concussion, before being hospitalized for a blood clot according the Associated Press via The Christian Science Monitor.
The concussion resulted in her gifts of a regulation football helmet with the State Department seal and a football jersey with the number 112 across the back. The jersey number references the number of countries Clinton has visited in her four years as Secretary of State – a record for the position.
Her return began with cheers, but quickly returned to business as usual as Clinton jumped right into planning for her successor. During the meeting, she placed emphasis on the State Department to implement a review board’s recommendations for improving security at high-threat diplomatic posts according to sources reported by the AP. Clinton requested the 29 recommendations from the independent Accountability Review Board to be in place before her successor takes over.
Her successor could be Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., who was nominated recently by President Barack Obama.
Her second piece of news of importance was that she will testify before Congress about the Benghazi, Libya report before she leaves office, though no date has been set.
It was September 11, when J. Christopher Stevens, the 52-year old Chinook Indian Tribe member, was slain along with three other United States citizens by Islamists who attacked the U.S. Consulate. In the days following the tragedy, news came about miscommunication throughout the ranks all the way back to Washington D.C. leading to the Congressional investigation.
With Congress in recess until January 21, Clinton may have to remain in her current position for another week after Obama’s inauguration. This would delay Kerry’s nomination as her replacement being considered by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
The celebratory return and announcements were then followed by a normal workday filled with meetings at the State Department. According to Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland, Clinton appeared to be recovered.