Hillary Rodham Clinton

By running as the Democratic nominee for President of the United States, Hillary Clinton made history. She became the first woman to run in the election representing one of the parties. We all know how this story ended,¬†and it’s not the way many of us imagined (or hoped) it would. The impact of her defeat, however, could be huge. An entire generation of women who wanted to see her win have been motivated to get more involved in politics. Despite her defeat, Hillary Clinton has had a career that anyone, male or female, would like for themselves.

Hillary studied law at Yale University and following her graduation she had a number of different job offers. She chose instead to follow her heart and moved to Arkansas with her boyfriend, Bill Clinton. While there she taught at the University of Arkansas as well as helping Bill on his political campaigns. When Bill took office in 1993 she became the first First Lady to have a postgraduate degree. She played an important role during her time as First Lady helping her husband put together his cabinet. She also worked on getting health care reform for the country.

In 2000 Hillary’s own political career began when she ran for Senator in New York. She comfortably won this election and in doing so she became the first female¬†senator of New York. She was re-elected in 2006. Following this she made the decision to run for President of the United States in the 2008 election. In her aim to become the first female President she ran against Barack Obama in the Democratic primary. While unsuccessful, she came closer than any woman before her. In her concession speech she said: “Although we were not able to shatter that highest and hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you it has 18 million cracks in it.”

Following his inauguration Barack Obama, nominated Hillary to be Secretary of State. During her time as Secretary of State she focused on human rights and women’s rights within the United States. She also became the most traveled Secretary of State. During her tenure she visited 112 countries and travelling a total of 956, 733 miles.

In April 2015 Hillary announced that she was running for President in the 2016 election. She battled against Bernie Sanders to win the Democratic nomination. The 2016 election campaign will go down in history as one of the ugliest ever fought. The reporting on the email scandal throughout her campaign played a large role in her losing the election. Despite winning the popular vote she did not win the electoral college.

In her concession speech she said

And to the young people in particular, I hope you will hear this. I have, spent my entire adult life fighting for what I believe in. I’ve had successes and I’ve had setbacks. Sometimes, really painful ones. Many of you are at the beginning of your professional public and political careers. You will have successes and setbacks, too. This loss hurts, but please never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it.

This speech was powerful in that it comforted those devastated by the defeat. It also aimed to galvanize and encourage young people to get into politics. She has also opened the door for other women to run for President in 2020.

-Michelle O’Brien
Junior Girl
Girl Museum Inc.

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