From her whip-cracking one liners to that shoulder shimmy, we’ve been watching Hillary Clinton with a mixture of wonder and awe over the past few months. But, lest we forget that the former Secretary of State, First Lady and New York Senator has been working to change lives both on and off the political stage for decades, let’s take a look back at her greatest moments…
1. Her graduation speech
In 1969, aged just 21, Hillary became the first student to deliver a
college commencement speech at Wellesley College. It wasn’t a
responsibility she took lightly. Before delivering the speech she had
carefully prepared, she took the main speaker, Senator Edward Brooke, to
task, declaring, “We’re not in the positions yet of leadership and
power, but we do have that indispensable element of criticising and
constructive protest.” In a statement that was to prefigure a truly
groundbreaking political career, she continued, “the challenge now is to
practice politics as the art of making what appears to be impossible
2. Her speech at The United Nations Fourth World Congress on Women in Beijing
In 1995, Hillary’s declaration that “human rights are women’s rights,
and women’s rights are human rights” was revolutionary. She has
continued to fight for improvements to women’s pay, safety and
reproductive rights throughout her career.
During her time as First Lady, Hillary played a key role in creating and pushing through the legislation for CHIP. The program, which provides low-cost health insurance to children whose families don’t qualify for free Medicaid, now covers more than 8 million children.
4. Her Grammy win
Yes, really. In 1997, Hillary won Best Spoken Word Album at the Grammys, for the audio version of her book, It Takes a Village. Obama has since won twice.
5. Her reaction to 9/11
Hillary visited the wreckage of the twin towers on 12th September 2001 and, according to onlookers, “She really went out of her way to speak to the first responders on the site to reassure them.” In the wake of 9/11, Hillary fought for ongoing healthcare for first responders and helped to secure $21.4 billion in funding for the redevelopment of the World Trade Center.
6. Her declaration on gay rights
In 2011, Hillary became the first global leader to declare that “gay rights are human rights”.
7. Her action in Israel
In 2012, Hillary travelled to war-torn Israel to broker a peace deal between Israel and Hamas which would see violent action in the region drop to its lowest level for a decade.
8. Her role in the mission that killed Osama Bin Laden
White House sources have revealed that Hillary was virtually alone amongst top level cabinet officers in backing the raid that was to result in Bin Laden’s death.
9. Her performance in the 2016 presidential debates
There’s no denying the fact that Hillary trumped Trump with this particular quote: “I think – I think Donald just criticised me for preparing for this debate. And, yes, I did. And you know what else I
prepared for? I prepared to be president. And I think that’s a good
10. The Hillary Shimmy
When Hillary quite literally “shook off” Trump’s suggestion that she had
“the wrong temperament” during the opening presidential debate, the
whole of Twitter shimmied with her.
11. Her Gracious Presidential Defeat Speech
It was no doubt the most painful speech she has ever had to deliver. But, following her defeat in the presidential election, Hillary gave a rousing speech that has been applauded for its honesty. Although her election dreams were in tatters, she spoke graciously about Trump, explaining that she had both congratulated him and offered to work with him in the future. She also spoke of her disappointment at not becoming the first ever female president, but remained optimistic that the moment would happen, “I know we have still not shattered that highest and hardest glass ceiling, but someday, someone will, and hopefully sooner than we might think right now. She went on to encourage others not to be put off by what she described as a “disappointing” result. She said, “To all the little girls who are watching this, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world to pursue and achieve your own dreams.”