Hillary Rodham Clinton presidential campaign, 2008

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Hilary Rodham Clinton is the junior Senator from New York and one of three front-runners among the 12 announced and unannounced candidates for the Democratic Party's 2008 presidential nomination. On January 20, 2007, Clinton announced her candidacy on her campaign website, the formation of her exploratory committee for the 2008 presidential election. She declared, "I'm in. And I'm in to win."

A still of Senator Clinton's announcement video.
A still of Senator Clinton's announcement video.


Campaign Strategy and Focus

Her strategy at the moment is to have an open conversation with the general public. She intends to wage her campaign fiercely online, but also on the trail. After a while, she will doubtless emerge with a more defined campaign focus. So far, she seems to be leaning toward a campaign that focuses on health care and possibly the environment.

It has been suggested that Hillary intends to appeal to Americans as a mother, a claim which is backed up by her appearance on The View (video), and content on her website. It is also likely that she is running as someone "fulfilling the American dream." (She might have this one down - it ties in with her "make history" edge.)

Her campaign biography focuses on the following:

  • Her middle class upbringing. (She devotes a whole page to this.) Also, how she has worked to help the middle class and poor, etc. Health care and job creation show up a few times. The minimum wage and middle-class tax cuts also make their appearance.
  • Her experience as a mother - including a very cute picture of Chelsea and her. After a brief mention of Chelsea, she becomes a sort of mega-mother - protecting children as a lawyer. This all ties in with her hard-won success both in an academic setting and her career. (Which is also linked to her middle class upbringing, in addition to her championship of health care and human/women's rights.) Basically, women and children are mentioned on every page. Her hawkish statements, of which there are only a few, focus on protection.
  • Her vast experience as a lawyer and politician. It is hard to tell if she intends to focus on this or not - it would be hard for her experience to NOT be apparent in any biography, and it didn't explicitly state it... so she may not be running under the banner of "most experienced candidate," though she easily could. (And it would be an angle that Obama would have a hard time dealing with.)

Debates, Events, and Appearances

The South Carolina Democratic Party will host the first presidential primary debate on April 26th, at South Carolina State University.


Hillary is unlikely to accept public funding for her campaign. It is speculated that none of the top tier candidates will, because winning this election will require more money than is made available by the grant. Howard Wolfsonm, a senior advisor to Senator Clinton, said that she would not take matching funds in the primary campaign or general election. Senator Clinton is expected to be one of the top fundraisers. She had a formidable $14 million in the bank left over from her 2006 Senate race, far ahead of the other Democratic candidates. Notable fundraisers, such as Vernon E. Jordan, Jr. and Steven Rattner, agreed to work with her campaign.

Online Campaign

Hillary has shown that she is ready, willing, and able to capitalize on the political potential of the internet. In addition to a plethora of videos, her campaign site offers the opportunity for guest bloggers to make posts. She has also took the brilliant move of asking about healthcare on Yahoo! Answers. (her question) She received tens of thousands of replies. (Note: she had used Yahoo! Answers once before, several months earlier, to ask about what we can do to eradicate breast cancer.)

Her campaign has placed ads on many "liberal" blogs, such as AMERICAblog and Crooks and Liars, in addition to less partisan blogs, such as Feministing. (Note: Feministing is certainly a left leaning blog, however, the site does not stray much from its very specific feminist interests.)



  • January 20, 2007 - announced that she was forming an exploratory committee, by video on her website. (video)
  • January 21, 2007 - first press conference after announcing her candidacy. (video)
  • January 22-24, 2007 - holds a series of three live webcasts on her campaign website. (Jan 22nd video, Jan 23rd video, and Jan 24th video)
  • January 24, 2007 - asks about health care on Yahoo! Answers. (her question)
  • January 23, 2007 - appears on Countdown with Keith Olbermann. (interview part 1, part 2, and part 3)
  • January 26, 2007 - arrives in Iowa, her first visit since 2003. (news clip 1, news clip 2, and NYT article)
  • January 30, 2007 - Hillary visits Florida.


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