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Tuesday, November 12, 2019

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Hillary Clinton and daughter Chelsea visit campus promoting new book


Hillary and Chelsea Clinton appeared in the Cullen Performance Hall to discuss their new book on bold women. | Trevor Nolley/The Cougar

Hillary and Chelsea Clinton appeared in the Cullen Performance Hall to discuss their new book on bold women. | Trevor Nolley/The Cougar

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her daughter, Chelsea Clinton, appeared at Cullen Performance Hall Friday evening to talk about their co-written book on famous bold women in history.

The sold out event, presented by Brazos Bookstore and moderated by Democratic politician Barbara Ann Radnofsky, focused on promoting “The Book of Gutsy Women: Favorite Stories of Courage and Resilience.” However, the discussion veered between politics, their bond as mother and daughter, and the women they researched and wrote on.

“These stories need to be told not just to girls and women, but to boys and men as well,” Hillary Clinton said. “We wanted to write about these women in their fullest, their wholeness.”

Hillary  Clinton made multiple glib references throughout the evening to President Donald Trump and the current administration, without mentioning his name.

“I’ve been outspoken about the damage done to our institutions,” the former First Lady Clinton said.

Hillary Clinton hinted at a possible presidential campaign, when Radnofsky asked her what her plans were.

“I’ve been having some fun on Twitter,” the elder Clinton said, referencing her joking tweets about entering the 2020 race. “I don’t think it would surprise anyone that I would do anything to make sure we have a different president.”

On the topic of motherhood, Hillary and Chelsea both brought up “a soul-expanding” feeling when they became mothers, and said they shared that bond.

Chelsea Clinton spoke of a letter she wrote to President Ronald Reagan as a child, urging him not to visit a military cemetery in Bitburg, Germany, where members of the Waffen-SS, the military arm of the SS, were buried.

“As a gesture of good will, I enclosed two sheets of rainbow heart stickers,” the younger Clinton said. “So he knew it was coming from a place of kindness.”

Reagan never responded to her letter, Chelsea Clinton said, and later visited the cemetery to much criticism.

However, when her father, former President Bill Clinton, won the presidency, he and Hillary asked her what she wanted out of “the adventure they were about to go on.”

“I told them I wanted every kid to get a response, whether they write to my dad or my mom,” Chelsea Clinton said.

Hillary Clinton, as First Lady, set up the Children’s Correspondence Unit.

The topic returned to the women that were the subject of the Clintons’ book — women like Harriet Tubman, Helen Keller, and Greta Thunberg — and issues like children’s marriage and voter suppression.

“We could have had hundreds and hundreds of women in this book,” Clinton said. “Women deserve to see themselves in history.”

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