As the 2012 election heats up, political pundits and journalists have been speculating on the future of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who has said she plans to leave her post at the end of the year. Everyone wants to know what will she do next. Is she gearing up to run for president in 2016?
She says "no."
Friends say "yes."
Her husband, former President Bill Clinton, told ABC News' Jake Tapper he didn't know. "Whether she does or not, who knows what will happen?" he said. "I'll say what I've said all my life. When I met her, I thought she was the most gifted person in my generation for public service."
The couple may doth protest too much, or Mrs. Clinton may simply be too busy with her job as Secretary of State, which last week put her front and center in headlines when she visited in China while the issue of dissident Chen Guangcheng was being hotly debated.
But that doesn't stop speculation about her future at home.
Consider the words of Ohio Governor John Kasich. In a response to what a political analyst said about his political future Kasich told the Columbus Dispatch last month, "You know why God made political scientists? So they could make astrologists look accurate."
Taking a cue from the governor, ABC News decided to ask the authors of The Political Astrology Blog what they see in their crystal ball in the sky.
They predict that after being Madame Secretary the next title of one of the world's most powerful and popular women may well be Madam President.
Authors Patrick Watson, Chris Brennan and Nick Dagan Best have charted Clinton's entire political life from childhood. Watson tells ABC News that there has been an astrological pattern to the Secretary's life, based on where her sun sign, Scorpio, is in a planetary cyle.
Specifically, every time Scorpio moves into her "Aquarius period," she has a successful political run. "She encountered her Aquarius period when she ran for the Senate in 2000," says Watson. "We've seen this pattern go all the way back to …the time that she and Bill Clinton lost the 1980 election but won the 1982 election. It even goes back to her election as president of her student government and even back to when she was in the 6th grade and was elected the co-caption of the safety patrol."
The astrologers say there's another political pattern as well. When Clinton's chart moves into the opposite sign, the Leo period, there's political activity that isn't nearly as successful as that co-captain of the safety patrol win. Her 2008 run for president and the period in which she decided not to run for governor of Arkansas were both during her Leo period.
The year 2016 will be an Aquarius period for Clinton, say Watson and Brennan, perfect for a presidential run.
Describing the exact timing of when the Aquarius period comes up is a complicated equation that entails tracking cycles of planet movement and "stacking them on top of each other symbolically," says Watson, but it's all part of the type of astrology the men who run the blog practice. Brennan, who is a former president of the Young Association of Astrologers, says it's derived from the Roman period and was originally designed to study the birth charts of kings and emperors and determine when the leader would hit the height of his career or social standing.
However, there is a rub: this type of astrology is reliant on a having a precise birth time. Because they have not yet been able to fully verify Clinton's birth time, though Brennan says he's been trying since 2005, the astrologers warn there is a margin for error. That said, the team says they have "good sources" on all other aspects of her life and feel they have put together a fairly accurate chart.
So yes, dear readers, "It looks like she is getting ready for a presidential run," says Brennan.
While skeptics may deem it silly to use astrology as a predictor of a political outcome, there is a history of politicians turning to the stars to make decisions. Former first lady Nancy Reagan invited astrologists to the White House to advise her husband. And other well-known astrologists say their client lists have included members of Congress and other high-powered people. Unfortunately, they won't say which ones.
Addressing skeptics, Brennan and Wilson say the way astrology is applied in pop culture -- for example, sun sign columns in magazines or sayings in fortune cookies -- contribute to the stereotype that it's not a serious, scientific medium.
"Real, advanced, horoscopic astrology, like what we practice, is not as easy to dismiss once you get into the actual mechanics of it," says Brennan. The team points to the evidence. In 2008, based on the charts of candidates Barack Obama and John McCain, the United Astrological Conference predicted Obama would be the winner. The team of Brennan et al recently published a post on their blog, again predicting Obama as the winner in 2012 after comparing his chart with Mitt Romney's.
The astrologers say they pride themselves on being non-partisan and are guided by science, not political affiliation.
Brennan says skeptics of political astrology should wait for the election outcome and judge for themselves.
In the interim you have your choice: listen to the political pundits, or look to the stars.