Clinton Makes First Public Appearance Since Concession

By Autumn Pattison 11/21/16

Hillary Clinton is making an emotional plea, urging supporters “not to give up” and to “stay engaged” in politics. Clinton’s comments came at a charity gala in Washington D.C. Wednesday evening, her first public remarks since conceding the election to President-elect Donald Trump. The gala was sponsored by the Children’s Defense Fund, which was founded by Marian Wright Edelman in 1973. Clinton and Edelman have a mentor-student relationship, as Clinton’s first job out of Yale was at the CDF. Edelman introduced Clinton Wednesday night, calling her “the people’s president.”
The former secretary of state admitted that “coming here tonight wasn’t the easiest,” but Clinton’s career in public service started at the fund, so one of her aids says it was a “fitting place for her first formal remarks following last week.”  Clinton’s speech was emotional, and focused on her relationship with her mother. Dorothy Rodham had a difficult childhood, and had to fend for herself going into adulthood. Clinton remarked that she wished she could speak to her mother. “I dream of going up to her, and sitting next to her and taking her in my arms and saying, ‘Look, look at me and listen. You will survive. You will have a family of your own: three children,'” Clinton said, choking up. “And as hard as it might be to imagine, your daughter will grow up to be a United States senator, represent our country as secretary of state, and win more than 62 million votes for president of the United States.”

Clinton went on to discuss her relationship with Edelman, saying she was “as inspired by Marian today as I was the first time I met her.” Clinton made no comment about a Trump presidency, but conveyed a sense of urgency about the next four years. “We have work to do, and for the sake of our children and our families and our country, I ask you to stay engaged, stay engaged on every level,” Clinton said. “We need you. America needs you, your energy, your ambition, your talent. That is how we get through this.” Her remarks were intended to inspire her audience not to give up, and to continue fighting for American values.

The former secretary of state has long been a champion for children and families, and made that a hallmark of her presidential campaign. Since she will not be spending the next four years in the Oval Office, Clinton seems to be turning her attention to continuing to fight for families and children.