Posts Tagged ‘William Jefferson Clinton’

Statement from President Clinton and Secretary Clinton on the Passing of Tom Hayden

Hillary and I were saddened to learn of the death of Tom Hayden. His eventful life in pursuit of peace and justice ran the gamut from protesting to legislating, with lots of writing and teaching along the way. Attacked first by the right as a dangerous radical, then by the left for his willingness to compromise, Tom always marched to the beat of his own drummer, doing what he thought at any given time would advance his lifelong goals. Hillary and I knew him for more than thirty years and valued both his words of support and his criticism. His intelligence, intensity, and willingness to put himself on the line was uniquely American. He will be missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with Barbara and his children.


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Paraphrasing JFK, Bill Clinton introduced himself as, “the man who accompanied Hillary Clinton to Iowa.”   It was his fourth appearance at the Tom Harkin Steak Fry where, Harkin noted, a steak has never been fried.  WJC said that the gingham shirt he was wearing, very trendy right now, was his birthday gift from Hillary.  She, in turn, on her first visit to Iowa since 2007, told the audience that Bill calls the steak fry “the stir fry,” and warned that she is on “grandma alert” in case they happened to see the two Clintons suddenly run off stage.

For his part, Tom Harkin, saying that after 40 years it was time to step aside,  introduced his family: daughters Amy with son-in-law and grandchildren,  and Jenny with his “granddog” Ollie who received a little grandfatherly stroke under the chin.  Retiring from the Senate and speaking at the last of these annual events,  he said he and wife Ruth are looking forward to being back home in Iowa.  People in the audience held signs thanking him for his years of service.

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New York Times Video >>>>

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We all join Hillary in wishing Bill Clinton a very Happy Birthday!




A very Happy Birthday to my very wonderful husband today.

With Congress in recess and President Clinton’s birthday coming up on August 19, House of Cards’ Frank Underwood has found a new way to make mischief.

Watch as he tries to involve Secretary Clinton in his schemes and join them in wishing President Clinton a happy birthday.

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This needs no explanation.


I’m following my leader!

Just in case you don’t tweet, live under a rock, or somehow misplaced your Clinton Decoder Pin, here is The Leader and her reply.


Well, that explains what happened to my iPad! RT : I’m following my leader!

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Mark the date!

Hillary Clinton       Live at 9pm (ET), January 27


Hillary Clinton

William Clinton
Soon my staff became known around the White House as ‘Hillaryland.’ We were fully immersed in the daily operations of the West Wing, but we were also our own little subculture within the White House. My staff prided themselves on discretion, loyalty and camaraderie, and we had our own special ethos. While the West Wing had a tendency to leak, Hillaryland never did.

Born – October 26, 1947 in Park Ridge, Illinois

Parents – Hugh Ellsworth Rodham & Dorothy Howell

Married – October 11, 1975 to William Jefferson Clinton

Children – Chelsea Victoria (1980 – present)
Education – Bachelor of Arts degree at Wellesley College in 1969; J.D. at Yale Law School in 1973

Occupation – Lawyer, political activist

Firsts – 1st First Lady to host a webcast from the White House. 1st First Lady elected to a public office. 1st First Lady to be a “de facto” federal official. 1st First Lady to have an office in West Wing.

Post White House residence – Washington, D.C.

Other offices – First Lady of Arkansas 1983 – 1992. U.S. Senator of New York 2001 – 2009. Secretary of State 2009 – 2013.

Click here to see full bio of Hillary Clinton

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August is the month that finds Hillary Clinton in the Hamptons  at least for part of the month.  Bill Clinton has routinely rented a mansion in East Hampton for a few weeks of the past several summers and has celebrated his birthday there.   Last year, Hillary had an especially abbreviated 10-day stay sandwiched between an extended farewell tour of Africa and a trip to the Pacific starting with the tiny Cook Islands.

According to Maggie Haberman at Politico, there is an invitation circulating indicating that once again the Clintons are planning some R & R in the Hamptons this summer.

Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton to host ritzy foundation fundraiser


Bill and Hillary Clinton will co-host a high-dollar event next month in a tony Long Island enclave to benefit their family foundation, according to an invitation that started circulating last week.

The event is being billed as a “very special dinner with President Bill Clinton and Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton” on Aug. 23 in Bridgehampton, at $5,000 a head.

Co-chairing the event costs $25,000 and chairing it carries a $50,000 price tag.“All proceeds will support the life-changing work of the newly renamed Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation – improving global health, strengthening economies, promoting health and wellness, and protecting the environment by fostering innovative partnerships among businesses, governments, NGOs, and private citizens,” the invitation reads.

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Back at the end of January, when Ed Koch passed away,  I went to the Clinton Foundation website multiple times in search of a press statement and found none.  By the next week,  WJC was speaking at the funeral,  and I searched no further.  Visiting there again today, suddenly there was this.  Better late than never.  I thought you would like to see the Clinton’s joint statement on the passing of their friend.

Statement by President and Secretary Clinton on the Passing of Mayor Ed Koch

We were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our friend, Ed Koch. He was a man whose convictions ran deep.  You knew where Ed stood on any topic, and whether or not you agreed with him or what he said, you couldn’t help but like him.

His personality was enormous, big enough for the city he called home for nearly his entire life. Ed stood up for the underprivileged and underrepresented in every corner of every borough because he knew that struggle firsthand. He fought for those without a voice because he knew the plight of the voiceless. He used all the tools at his disposal to pull New York out of one of its darkest times.

The son of Polish immigrants is now forever in the city he loved so much. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends and all those who benefited from his life and service.


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Mme. Secretary  began the  month on foreign travel,  most of it her typical country-a-day routine, to countries engaged in disputes over rights in the South China Sea.  It was a particularly hectic trip with a lot of bilaterals that would have been less necessary had the Law of the Sea Convention not been killed by the Tea Party members of Congress.

September is always a heavy month for a secretary of state with the U.N. General Assembly convening at the New York headquarters.  For this particular SOS it has always been even busier since her husband simultaneously runs his Clinton Global Initiative in NYC,  and she always makes an appearance.   This year was altogether heavier than in the past since it was an election year and the president stayed only a short time and left her in charge in his wake.  She acted as head-of-state through most of UNGA this year.

Punctuating all of this were demonstrations and riots at embassies in the Middle East and North Africa.  The American School in Tunis was destroyed, and of course there was the deadly attack on the consulate in Benghazi that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.

Here are some pictures from September starting with her visit to the Cook Islands.


On the third she was in Indonesia.

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On the fourth she left Indonesia for China following a stop at Embassy Jakarta and a visit to the ASEAN Secretariat.


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She remained in china through the fifth.

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She was in Timor-Leste on the sixth when her husband addressed the Democratic Convention in Charlotte.  Somehow they managed to find an internet connection for her to be able to watch.

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The same day she arrived in Brunei, the first top U.S. diplomat to visit all 10 ASEAN countries.


From there she traveled to Vladivostok, Russia (birthplace of Yul Brynner) where she and Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov signed a cooperation agreement.

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She attended and spoke at an APEC conference.

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She left Russia on the ninth for D.C. and although she had no public events on the 11th, we later learned from State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland that she was indeed at her office late into that night when the attack on the consulate occurred.  The next day the sad aftermath rolled out from the Rose Garden of the White House to the State Department where devastated colleagues mourned the dead.

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On the 14th, the coffins came home.  She and President Obama were at the transfer  ceremony.

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The 18th was “Ladies’ Day”  at the State Department.  She welcomed  Aung San Suu Kyi and held a signing ceremony with her Mexican counterpart Patricia Espinosa.

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As world leaders began to arrive in the U.S. for UNGA, there were events in D.C.


And on the 23rd it was off to UNGA and CGI in New York where her September ended.

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When the General Assembly convened, it was clear how much she would be missed on the world stage.

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Here is the archive for September 2012.

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Wishing you a lovely Christmas with your family.  Mme. Secretary, praying for your speedy and complete recovery,  and a happy and healthy 2013 for all.  We are going to miss seeing you here, Mme. Secretary.  Hoping we will still find a way to follow your work.

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Last night, for the fourth, and final time,  Mme. Secretary and her handsome beau hosted the Kennedy Center honorees at a gala dinner at the State Department.  We  have always looked forward to seeing  the  secretary in her evening wear.  This green gown with its ruching is simply stunning on her.  This year’s honorees are John Paul Jones, Buddy Guy, Jimmy Page, Natalia Makarova, Robert Plant, Dustin Hoffman, and David Letterman.  We also see Mme. Secretary with last year’s honoree, Meryl Streep.

Here are Mme. Secretary’s remarks.


Remarks at the 35th Annual Kennedy Center Honors



Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State

U.S. Ambassador Kenneth Merten

Benjamin Franklin Room

Washington, DC

December 1, 2012


Well, we’re going to give everyone a minute to get back from taking a break or sitting down or coming off of the terrace outside. As we begin the program for this 35th Kennedy Center Honors, one of the highlights of the year here in Washington by any measure, and especially exciting this year as we honor a group of legends and icons as diverse as they are talented. We have in our group of honorees tonight a broad cross-section of talent and energy from comedian to chameleon, ballerina to bluesman, and three men so synonymous with rock and roll they need no more description than Page, Plant, Jones. (Laughter.) And I am delighted to welcome back one of last year’s honorees who has graciously agreed to be the MC for the evening, Meryl Streep. (Applause.)

You are all in for a treat. I had the extraordinary experience earlier this year at the Women of the World conference in New York of being introduced by Meryl, and I’ve decided to bring her along every chance I get. (Laughter.) Now, of course, two of the people who make this night so special aren’t with us. It’s the first time they’ve missed the dinner in 35 years. George Stevens, who conceived of the Kennedy Center Honors and produces them each year, and Liz Stevens, who chairs this dinner every year, happen to be in Hollywood. Michael, their son, told me that George wouldn’t leave until the rehearsal was over, so we hope they’re in Hollywood, because he didn’t get on a plane until sometime mid-afternoon.

George is receiving an honorary Academy Award for his lifetime of contributions to film and the performing arts, including these awards. (Applause.) They will be back in time for tomorrow’s gala, but tonight we send our congratulations long-distance.

I am sure, like many of you, I am a fan of all of this year’s honorees. Now speaking personally, who hasn’t, among us, fallen in love with Dustin Hoffman at some point or another? (Applause.) In a lifetime of roles, there really is something for everyone – handsome leading man in The Graduate, handsome leading woman in Tootsie – (laughter) – handsome red panda in Kung Fu Panda – but a lifetime of such exhilarating performances, making you cry, making you laugh, making you think. And we are delighted that he and his beautiful family are with us tonight.

Now Buddy Guy – (applause) – actually, Buddy Guy and Led Zeppelin have been part of the soundtrack of our lives. I grew up with Chicago blues and married Delta blues – (laughter and applause) – and I think my husband is especially happy to be here tonight because he may get to say a few words about Buddy Guy. He’d rather be playing with you, but he’ll stick to talking, I hope. (Laughter.) And then of course, when we were at law school, which seems so long ago, back in the 1970s, a decade of terrible clothes but good music, Led Zeppelin was always coming out of what we called in those days “record players.” And even forty years later, there is something about their music that speaks to the unbound joy and possibility of youth.

Now you may remember that earlier this year, Buddy Guy managed to get President Obama to do a few bars of “Sweet Home Chicago.” And now some of you may be looking a little nervous here, because he may be trying to get one or more of you to do a few bars of something. But it won’t be me; not even Stairway. (Laughter.) But it will be a reminder of how well our President sang that night, which I think was worth a couple of points in the polls, myself.

And of course for Chelsea and me, ballet was a big part of her life. She performed in the Washington Ballet, went to so many ballets over the years. And there is such a great sense of anticipation tonight in being able to honor a ballerina that has meant so much to so many. And I was thrilled to see so many of the greats of ballet here tonight. I think that tomorrow should be a special treat for anyone who loves the ballet as we honor Natalia Makarova and what she has meant to the art. (Applause.)

And then there is David Letterman – (laughter) – the big guy, as they call him. (Applause.) David and I have a history. (Laughter.) I have been a guest on his show several times, and if you include references to my pantsuits, I’m on at least once a week. (Laughter.) I wanted to read you a top ten list to celebrate – (laughter) – Dave’s life of contributions, but unfortunately the State Department does not have a desk officer who covers Wahoo, Nebraska, or wherever the home office is these days. But there I was, being gracious, the hostess of the evening, and Dave and his beautiful wife, Regina, came through. And I greeted her and said how happy we were to have her, and greeted Dave and then said, “Look, Dave, I took my pants off for you.” (Laughter and applause.) And Dave without missing a beat said, “I don’t think you meant to say that.” (Laughter.) And Dave, you’ve got to be reminded that what happens here stays here. (Laughter.)

But Dave is probably wondering what he’s doing in this crowd of amazingly talented – (laughter) – artists and musicians. (Applause.) But let me hasten to add we are not wondering. For all of the teasing over the years that you’ve engaged in and some of us have had the fun of engaging with you, we’ve always recognized that talent. It is hard to do what you do every night, and while you always make us laugh, you also make us think.

So these are performers of exceptional skill, matchless ability; but there’s a common strain running through all of their careers, and that is a willingness to take risks. They have refused to be boxed into one genre or category, and in the process, they’ve inspired a whole generation of artists. That is the great beauty of art. It’s a canvas big enough to hold every crazy idea and find a home for all of the boundary pushers. And all who have worn the rainbow laurels of the Kennedy Center Honors have made it here because they refused to accept the world as it is or the limitations that someone or society tried to place on them. They insist on exploring what could be, they challenge our prejudices, and change our perspectives.

Now, art is a calling that not only celebrates doing things differently, it demands it. And I see this in artists around the world, the desire to create rather than conform. The yearning to share the uniqueness we each hold inside is universal. And art is an outward expression of our common human dignity that certainly we here in the State Department work so hard to defend and uphold every day.

Now, in my line of work, we talk often about the art of diplomacy. I really like saying that because so many of the building blocks for art and diplomacy are the same. We have to be willing to try new things, occasionally take big risks. We strive to find a common language, whether that means riffing on an established theme or improvising in the moment, and at base it is always, always about making people’s lives a little bit freer, even a little bit better in some small way.

So the arts and diplomacy actually do go hand in hand. They play out on world stages and reflect our common need to build bonds of understanding with others. Tonight, we honor an artist who actually braved one of the great schisms of the modern world, because when Natalia defected from the Soviet Union in 1970, she risked everything to have the freedom to dance the way she wanted to dance, a freedom that at the time was only available to her in the West.

And when the Kirov Ballet returned to London 18 years later, their first visit since her defection, she was in the audience on opening night, and a few short weeks later, she was on the stage with them. It was a surprise performance, the first time a Russian defector was allowed to perform with a Soviet troop. The negotiations had been in the works for months. It was only approved by the Kremlin at the last minute. In fact, I’m told the Kirov corps had to borrow Swan Lake costumes from the Royal Ballet.

She, of course, turned in a flawless performance. It was an amazing instance of glasnost brought to light. And for all the political overtones and the tensions, it was first and foremost a beautiful human moment. After a thunderous ovation, the Kirov dancers gave her the honor of the last solo bow. She then turned around and offered her final bow to her former troop. Art and diplomacy, indistinguishable.

So I would like to thank these artists for the moments of connection they have given all of us over the years. Thank you for never stopping to take risks. Thank you for having the courage to create. And so for me it’s a bittersweet night, because this will be my last opportunity to host you here in the State Department, and I want to thank the Kennedy Center for the extraordinary cooperation and partnership that we have had over the years, but particularly these last four years.

And on that note, I want to welcome the Kennedy Center’s chairman, David Rubenstein, to the stage so that he can begin the main event. He’s done a wonderful service for the Kennedy Center, and he’s also done a wonderful service for helping us keep these diplomatic rooms at the State Department so beautiful. And he’s also pretty funny himself. So please join me in welcoming the other



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