Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton is the 67th United States Secretary of State, serving in the administration of President Barack Obama. She was a United States Senator for New York from 2001 to 2009. As the wife of the 42nd President of the United States, Bill Clinton, she was the First Lady of the United States from 1993 to 2001. In the 2008 election, Clinton was a leading candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination. Super Woman Hillary Clinton, The 100 most influential people and lawyers.
Clinton has received many awards and honors during her career from American and international organizations for her activities concerning health, women, and children.
A native of Illinois, Hillary Rodham first attracted national attention in 1969 for her remarks as the first student commencement speaker at Wellesley College. She embarked on a career in law after graduating from Yale Law School in 1973. Following a stint as a Congressional legal counsel, she moved to Arkansas in 1974 and married Bill Clinton in 1975. Rodham cofounded the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families in 1977 and became the first female chair of the Legal Services Corporation in 1978. Named the first female partner at Rose Law Firm in 1979, she was twice listed as one of the 100 most influential lawyers in America. First Lady of Arkansas from 1979 to 1981 and 1983 to 1992 with husband Bill as Governor, she successfully led a task force to reform Arkansas’s education system. She sat on the board of directors of Wal-Mart and several other corporations.
In 1994 as First Lady of the United States, her major initiative, the Clinton health care plan, failed to gain approval from the U.S. Congress. However, in 1997 and 1999, Clinton played a role in advocating the creation of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Adoption and Safe Families Act, and the Foster Care Independence Act. Her years as First Lady drew a polarized response from the American public. The only First Lady to have been subpoenaed, she testified before a federal grand jury in 1996 due to the Whitewater controversy, but was never charged with wrongdoing in this or several other investigations during her husband’s administration. The state of her marriage was the subject of considerable speculation following the Lewinsky scandal in 1998.
After moving to the state of New York, Clinton was elected as a U.S. Senator in 2000. That election marked the first time an American First Lady had run for public office; Clinton was also the first female senator to represent the state. In the Senate, she initially supported the Bush administration on some foreign policy issues, including a vote for the Iraq War Resolution. She subsequently opposed the administration on its conduct of the war in Iraq and on most domestic issues. Senator Clinton was reelected by a wide margin in 2006. In the 2008 presidential nomination race, Hillary Clinton won more primaries and delegates than any other female candidate in American history, but narrowly lost to Illinois Senator Barack Obama.
As Secretary of State, Clinton became the first former First Lady to serve in a president’s cabinet. She has put into place institutional changes seeking to maximize departmental effectiveness and promote the empowerment of women worldwide. She has set records for most-traveled secretary for time in office. She has been at the forefront of the U.S. response to the 2011 Middle East protests, including advocating for the military intervention in Libya.
Cultural and Political Images
Hillary Clinton has frequently been featured in the media and popular culture from a wide spectrum of perspectives. In 1995, New York Times writer Todd Purdum labeled Clinton “the First Lady as Rorschach test”, an assessment echoed at the time by feminist writer and activist Betty Friedan, who said, “Coverage of Hillary Clinton is a massive Rorschach test of the evolution of women in our society.”
Hillary Rodham Clinton, January 2007
Clinton has often been described in the popular media as a polarizing figure, with some arguing otherwise. James Madison University political science professor Valerie Sulfaro’s 2007 study used the American National Election Studies’ “feeling thermometer” polls, which measure the degree of opinion about a political figure, to find that such polls during Clinton’s First Lady years confirm the “conventional wisdom that Hillary Clinton is a polarizing figure”, with the added insight that “affect towards Mrs. Clinton as first lady tended to be very positive or very negative, with a fairly constant one fourth of respondents feeling ambivalent or neutral.” University of California, San Diego political science professor Gary Jacobson’s 2006 study of partisan polarization found that in a state-by-state survey of job approval ratings of the state’s senators, Clinton had the fourth-largest partisan difference of any senator, with a 50 percentage point difference in approval between New York’s Democrats and Republicans. Northern Illinois University political science professor Barbara Burrell’s 2000 study found that Clinton’s Gallup poll favorability numbers broke sharply along partisan lines throughout her time as First Lady, with 70 to 90 percent of Democrats typically viewing her favorably while 20 to 40 percent of Republicans did not.] University of Wisconsin–Madison political science professor Charles Franklin analyzed her record of favorable versus unfavorable ratings in public opinion polls, and found that there was more variation in them during her First Lady years than her Senate years. The Senate years showed favorable ratings around 50 percent and unfavorable ratings in the mid-40 percent range; Franklin noted that, “This sharp split is, of course, one of the more widely remarked aspects of Sen. Clinton’s public image.” McGill University professor of history Gil Troy titled his 2006 biography of her Hillary Rodham Clinton: Polarizing First Lady, and wrote that after the 1992 campaign, Clinton “was a polarizing figure, with 42 percent [of the public] saying she came closer to their values and lifestyle than previous first ladies and 41 percent disagreeing.” Troy further wrote that Hillary Clinton “has been uniquely controversial and contradictory since she first appeared on the national radar screen in 1992” and that she “has alternately fascinated, bedeviled, bewitched, and appalled Americans.”
Clinton worked at Rose Law Firm for fifteen years. Her professional career and political involvement set the stage for public reaction to her as First Lady.
Burrell’s study found women consistently rating Clinton more favorably than men by about ten percentage points during her First Lady years. Jacobson’s study found a positive correlation across all senators between being women and receiving a partisan-polarized response. Colorado State University communication studies professor Karrin Vasby Anderson describes the First Lady position as a “site” for American womanhood, one ready made for the symbolic negotiation of female identity. In particular, Anderson states there has been a cultural bias towards traditional first ladies and a cultural prohibition against modern first ladies; by the time of Clinton, the First Lady position had become a site of heterogeneity and paradox. Burrell, as well as biographers Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta, Jr., note that Clinton achieved her highest approval ratings as First Lady late in 1998, not for professional or political achievements of her own, but for being seen as the victim of her husband’s very public infidelity. University of Pennsylvania communications professor Kathleen Hall Jamieson saw Hillary Clinton as an exemplar of the double bind, who though able to live in a “both-and” world of both career and family, nevertheless “became a surrogate on whom we projected our attitudes about attributes once thought incompatible”, leading to her being placed in a variety of no-win situations. Quinnipiac University media studies professor Lisa Burns found press accounts frequently framing Clinton both as an exemplar of the modern professional working mother and as a political interloper interested in usurping power for herself. University of Indianapolis English professor Charlotte Templin found political cartoonists using a variety of stereotypes – such as gender reversal, radical feminist as emasculator, and the wife the husband wants to get rid of – to portray Hillary Clinton as violating gender norms.
Over fifty books and scholarly works have been written about Hillary Clinton, from many different perspectives. A 2006 survey by The New York Observer found “a virtual cottage industry” of “anti-Clinton literature”, put out by Regnery Publishing and other conservative imprints, with titles such as Madame Hillary: The Dark Road to the White House, Hillary’s Scheme: Inside the Next Clinton’s Ruthless Agenda to Take the White House, and Can She Be Stopped? : Hillary Clinton Will Be the Next President of the United States Unless Books praising Clinton did not sell nearly as well (other than the memoirs written by her and her husband). When she ran for Senate in 2000, a number of fundraising groups such as Save Our Senate and the Emergency Committee to Stop Hillary Rodham Clinton sprang up to oppose her. Van Natta, Jr., found that Republican and conservative groups viewed her as a reliable “bogeyman” to mention in fundraising letters, on a par with Ted Kennedy and the equivalent of Democratic and liberal appeals mentioning Newt Gingrich.
Going into the early stages of her presidential campaign for 2008, a Time magazine cover showed a large picture of her, with two checkboxes labeled “Love Her”, “Hate Her”, while Mother Jones titled its profile of her “Harpy, Hero, Heretic: Hillary”. Democratic netroots activists consistently rated Clinton very low in polls of their desired candidates, while some conservative figures such as Bruce Bartlett and Christopher Ruddy were declaring a Hillary Clinton presidency not so bad after all and an October 2007 cover of The American Conservative magazine was titled “The Waning Power of Hillary Hate”. By December 2007, communications professor Jamieson observed that there was a large amount of misogyny present about Clinton on the Internet, up to and including Facebook and other sites devoted to depictions reducing Clinton to sexual humiliation. She noted that, in response to widespread comments on Clinton’s laugh, that “We know that there’s language to condemn female speech that doesn’t exist for male speech. We call women’s speech shrill and strident. And Hillary Clinton’s laugh was being described as a cackle.” Use of the “bitch” epithet, which taken place against Clinton going back to her First Lady days and was seen by Karrin Vasby Anderson as a tool of containment against women in American politics, flourished during the campaign, especially on the Internet but via conventional media as well. Following Clinton’s “choked up moment” and related incidents before the January 2008 New Hampshire primary, both The New York Times and Newsweek found that discussion of gender’s role in the campaign had moved into the national political discourse. Newsweek editor Jon Meacham summed the relationship between Clinton and the American public by saying that the New Hampshire events, “brought an odd truth to light: though Hillary Rodham Clinton has been on the periphery or in the middle of national life for decades … she is one of the most recognizable but least understood figures in American politics.”
Once she became Secretary of State, Clinton’s image seemed to dramatically improve among the American public and become one of a respected world figure. She gained consistently high approval ratings (by 2011, the highest of her career except for during the Lewinsky scandal), and her favorable-unfavorable ratings during 2010 were easily the highest of any active, nationally prominent American political figure. She continued to do well in Gallup’s most admired man and woman poll; in 2010 she was named the most admired woman by Americans for the ninth straight time and the fifteenth overall.
Source : wikipedia
source : usatoday.com, wikpedia
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