I want you to ask yourselves: Were you in this campaign just for me? Or were you in it... for all the people in this country who feel invisible?
— Hillary Clinton
The wife of former President Bill Clinton and a lawyer and politician in her own right, Secretary of State Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton (born 1947) is the most politically active First Lady in American history.A graduate of Wellesley College and Yale Law School, Clinton spent years working as a lawyer, specializing in child services and welfare. She met Bill Clinton when both were students at Yale Law School and married him in 1975. By the time her husband ran for Governor of Arkansas, she was already well known as a lawyer and politician in her own right and had come to national attention as the first student ever to give the commencement address at well-respected Wellesley College, her alma mater, and as the first-ever female partner at Arkansas' prestigious Rose Law Firm.She was a highly controversial First Lady, making health care reform her pet project and attracting attention for her hands-on approach. The moniker "Billary" and the "two-for-one" jokes may have been funny, but they also held more than a grain of truth, and the contrast was even more marked after the distinctly hands-off, stay-at-home policies of then-recent First Ladies such as Barbara Bush and Nancy Reagan.Her tenure as First Lady, however, was only the beginning for Clinton. She became the first First Lady to hold political office in her own right when she took her oath as Senator (D-NY) in early 2001, just months before the devastating attacks on the World Trade Center. Obviously, as New York's junior Senator, in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 she was instrumental in shaping America's response to the attacks. Later on during her time in the Senate she campaigned further for health care as well as speaking up for rural areas such as upstate New York and the areas around Albany and Syracuse.She won again by a significant margin in 2006, but left the Senate to engage in the closest primary election in American history, the 2008 Presidential Democratic primary. Up against Barack Obama, she won over 18 million votes around the country and was the first serious female candidate for the Presidency in history. She fought the campaign out right up to the Democratic National Convention, but spoke in favor of her former rival as its keynote speaker on its second night. Since Defeat Means Friendship, she joined Obama's cabinet as Secretary of State, becoming the first First Lady to serve on the Cabinet, and has used her many foreign contacts from her days as First Lady to assist in restoring America's image around the globe.She chose not to remain in the post for Obama's second term, passing that baton to now-former Senator John Kerry, and currently refuses to comment when asked about running for political office again, but time will tell. (All she will say is that she plans to spend about a year catching up on her sleep, and understandably so. She also hinted that she might write another book.)Although several different biographies of her have been written, she has also written her own autobiography, Living History.Clinton's policies, image, and general existence are highly controversial and as with all things political, follow the Rule of Cautious Editing Judgment.
Approval Of God: She lovedTexts from Hillary on Tumblr, and even contacted the blog's creators and gave them an autographed copy of a "Hillary Texts" post she made herself. And then it got better; when she got a Twitter account, her first tweet was tagged "#tweetsfromhillary" and her profile picture is...well...that picture.
Don't ask her about Bill's opinion. Funny enough, the person was actually asking what President Obama's opinion was; as a member of his administration, it's certainly a fair question to ask. What she thought had been said resulted from a translation error.
She also gets quite cranky when journalists focus more on her fashion choices than her public policy issues.
Creator Couple: She was the first First Lady to have an office in the West Wing. Her staff was known as "Hillaryland."
In early 2008, as the Democratic Primaries were heating up, the unthinkable happened: a good number of Republicans were actually warming up to Hillary Clinton over her rival, Barack Obama. With a bitter, contested primary fight going on, the Democrats having a Broken Base, her being criticized by some on the left for a perceived hawkishness on The War on Terror, some commentators at MSNBC criticizing her campaign tactics, and a number of her supporters disaffected with Obama, some Republicans not only favored their once worst enemy over her rival, but also over their own candidate, John McCain.
This was partially due to some Republicans feeling that McCain was not conservative enough. Particularly, it was thought that Clinton was likely to be tougher on terrorism than either McCain or Obama. It was also perceived that she criticized Obama in harsher terms than McCain did.
First Name Basis: She's called by her first name at a higher frequency than most politicians. Pragmatically speaking it's mostly done to differentiate her from Bill.
From Bad to Worse: In December 2012, she came down with a nasty virus that left her dehydrated and shaky. As a result of said virus, she collapsed, fainting and sustaining a nasty concussion. As if that wasn't bad enough, that concussion resulted in not one, but two blood clots very close to her brain, which landed her in the hospital for several days while she was treated with clot-busting drugs. All told, she was sidelined for over a month, and as of February 2013 was still wearing glasses with special lenses to correct double vision caused by the concussion. Fortunately, she seems to have otherwise recovered quite well, but December 2012 was still one very bad month for Madame Secretary.
Happily Married: She is still married to — and still very much in love with — Bill Clinton. Although her autobiography Living History chronicles her struggle to forgive him for the 1998 Lewinsky scandal, she concludes that despite his betrayal, she loves him, has always loved him, and cannot imagine a life without him. Note that this does not stop many tabloids from speculating on a divorce, even 15 years after the incident happened.
During the first years of Bill's presidency, she was somewhat famous for wearing headbands. During an appearance on the Tyra Banks Show, she mentioned that she considered headbands one of the best things invented since the telephone, and would probably still wear them had they not fallen out of style.
Her pantsuits later became the fashion choice of note. The two most famous moments are likely at the 2008 Democratic National Convention, when her aides had a rainbow of suits that they camera and light tested; and on the campaign trail in 2000 in New York, when Hillary herself said that she had been campaigning so hard she had gone through 3 black pantsuits. (She even nicknamed her campaign staff "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pantsuits".)
In fact, she was the first American First Lady to wear a pantsuit in her official First Lady portrait, and she also wore one when she was sworn in as Senator.
And then, during her tenure as Secretary, she discovered the scrunchie — a cloth-covered hair elastic to which she became quite attached, as it meant she could pull back her hair anytime, and anywhere — even after hours-long international flights — and still look professional. Her staff, however, turned out to not be as fond of the hair accessory as their boss (they have something of a dated reputation in America, being somewhat tied, if you'll pardon the pun, to the late Eighties-early Nineties Saved by the Bell-era of fashion) ... but, seeing as how she's Hillary Clinton, if she wanted to wear a scrunchie, she was darned well going to wear a scrunchie. Apparently, the "Hillary's Hair" obsession had only been hibernating.
Loophole Abuse: A point of contention during Hillary's Senate campaign: she never actually lived in New York until she decided to run for election as their senator, and there was no rule against her moving there for that purpose and running. (The incumbent who held the seat before her was retiring so it was an open field). She was re-elected with a considerable majority, so New York seems not to mind that much, but there is no denying that she jumped through a pretty large hole in the rules.
She's not actually the first person to have done this, only the most recent. Robert Kennedy did the same thing in 1964.
Love at First Sight: On Bill's part, apparently. When she walked over and introduced herself, he forgot his own name for a few seconds.
Power Hair: She has sported it, among other hairstyles. Indeed, her changing hairstyles early on were followed by many Americans. Eventually she settled on her signature style. She's since let it grow longer because her daughter asked her to for her wedding.
Sand In My Eyes: During the famous Situation Roomphoto,◊ Hillary has her hand over her mouth, and looked very stressed or worried. She says that she has a spring allergy and was suppressing a cough.
Sexy Spectacles/Meganekko: Since her triple-threat health scare in late 2012note a viral illness caused her to faint and hit her head, which saw her hospitalized for a concussion and later a blood clot near her brain caused by said concussion, which kept her out of public view for nearly a month, Hillary has been seen in public wearing spectacles◊, as opposed to the contacts she wore before, in order to correct double vision. Her fangirls are divided on whether they make her sexy or adorable, but either way, Tumblr loves them.
Single-Issue Wonk: For a while, she was most famous for her advocacy of public healthcare, to the point that her proposal was derisively referred to as "Hillarycare". Since taking the office of Secretary, this characterization of her has diminished.
Stress Bleach: Her hair is grayer now than it was when she took her oath as Secretary of State, and she has been looking increasingly more haggard as she deals with a rather delicate international situation. This is not surprising, as on the international stage she is only marginally less important than the Joint Chiefs and the President himself.
Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Clinton's replacement in the Senate (later confirmed in a special election) was blonde Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand, who not only shares most of Clinton's political ideologynote (Gillibrand's switch from Representative of a notably conservative district to Senator of a notably liberal state has been met with a corresponding leftward shift in her political views), but also bears a certain resemblance to her◊.
Chelsea looks frighteningly like her mother in this picture◊. If she follows anything even remotely resembling a political career (which her degree in history makes possible), it'll probably become something of a Generation Xerox, too.
Now sort-of confirmed: Chelsea will be working for NBC News, including both the Nightly News and Rock Center. Either way, she's working with Brian Williams.
Vitriolic Best Buds: She once was Obama's opponent, now she's his Secretary of State. (Although it should be noted that they were opponents, not enemies.) This is possibly not surprising: Obama Team Of Rivals - the historical account of Abraham Lincoln choosing his political rivals to join him in government because they were the best people for the job - as the one book he would want on a desert island.