The presidential profile: background, political career, stance on issues, of Hillary Clinton, a candidate currently ranked second among the Democratic hopefuls.
by Morgan Dorn
She was born Hillary Diane Rodham, to father Hugh Rodham (a small business owner) and mother Dorothy Rodham (a homemaker), into a middle-class household in suburban Park Ridge, Illinois in 1947. Rodham led a lively childhood. She attended Maine South High, was active in her Methodist church youth-group, was a Girl Scout, a member of the National Honor Society, and was developing into a Republican, volunteering in Barry Goldwater’s 1964 presidential election campaign.
After graduating from Maine South High in 1965 Rodham attended Wellesley College, a women’s liberal-arts school located in Massachusetts, where she majored in political science. Rodham’s four years at Wellesley College were successful. She served as President of College Government, and as a presiding member of the college senate, while at the same time earning high marks in classes. Rodham was in Wellesley’s 91st graduating class, and was the first-ever student commencement speaker. It was during her time at Wellesley that Rodham, in 1968, switched to the Democratic Party and campaigned for presidential hopeful Eugene McCarthy.
Rodham continued her academic career at Yale Law School in 1969. Her achievements at Yale include her serving on the Board of Editors of the Yale Law Review and Social Action and her internship with children’s advocate Marian Wright Edelman. While at Yale, Rodham met her future husband, and future President of the United States, Bill Clinton. Rodham graduated from Yale Law School in 1973 as a Juris Doctor with a three year law degree.
Serving as one of the lawyers advising the House Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives considering the impeachment of Richard Nixon, and as a staff attorney for the Children’s Defense Fund, Rodham followed Bill Clinton to Arkansas where they married in 1975. Rodham – now Clinton, was the First Lady of Arkansas for 12 years as Bill was elected Governor in 1978, and worked as a partner at the Rose Law Firm in Little Rock.
In 1993 Bill Clinton was elected President of The United States and, as President, asked Hillary to lead the Task Force on National Health Care Reform. In 1996 Hillary faced accusations of being involved in illegal activity involving Rose Law Firm and the Whitewater Development Corporation. She testified before a federal grand jury, and in 2002. Independent Counsel Robert Ray released his final report on the lengthy investigation, saying the Clintons had not committed illegal acts, but that they had given inaccurate testimony.
Hillary Clinton was elected to the United States Senate from New York in 2000, becoming the first ever First Lady to be elected to the U.S. Senate. In 2006 Clinton was re-elected for her second term. She announced seeking the Democratic candidacy on January 22, 2007.
“I believe abortions should be safe, legal and rare,” stated Clinton. If elected, she pledges to sign the Freedom of Choice Act into law.
Clinton plans to end President Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act. She also proposes a universal “pre-kindergarten” program for four-year-olds, so they can begin education earlier.
Stem Cell Research
Clinton supports the increase in federal funding used for embryonic stem cell research.
"Our message to the president is clear. It is time to begin ending this war — not next year, not next month — but today,” is Clinton’s statement posted on her website, which describes her three-step plan that pledges to bring American troops home, to bring stability to the region, and replace military force with a diplomatic initiative that would engage countries around the world in securing Iraq’s future. Clinton’s website states that she would bring American troops back to US soil starting within her first 60 days in office.
Proposes fuel efficiency increases in automobiles to meet a 55 miles per gallon goal by 2030. If elected, Clinton would double federal funding into energy research.
Clinton voted in favor of the 2001 PATRIOT ACT and voted for its 2006 re-authorization. However, Clinton sees immigration as the largest threat to Homeland security. “It is the number one issue, because we’ve got to have secure borders. This is not only about immigration, this is about security… and we know that we had people who flew those planes into the buildings in New York City, who were there legally initially, and overstayed their visas,” Clinton said.
Clinton voted in support of a 700 mile fence along the United States and Mexico Border. She also supported Bush-backed immigration reform. “A strengthening of our borders, greater cross-cooperation with our neighbors, strict but fair enforcement of our laws, federal assistance to our state and local governments, strict penalties for those who exploit undocumented workers, and a path to earned legal status for those who are here, working hard, paying taxes, respecting the law, and willing to meet a high bar,” states Clinton’s website.
Clinton is currently ranked second in the race for the Democratic Nomination, with 1,480 votes to Barack Obama’s 1,611 votes. The Democratic magic number needed to win is 2,025.