tv Hillary Clinton Discusses New Memoir What Happened CSPAN September 18, 2017 11:12pm-12:41am EDT
the free c-span radio app. >> earlier this evening, hillary clinton gave her account of the 2016 presidential campaign with her memoir entitled "what ?"ppened and she sat down with the owner of the total tics and prose bookstore. -- the politics and prose bookstore. ais is about an hour and half. [cheers and applause] that is a good start. thank you very much. good evening. i am bradley ram. i am the co-owner of allah tics and prose, along with my wife. prose, alongnd with my wife.
thank you for coming. what a marvelous crowd. and, what a great space for a book event. thanks to the warner theatre for making this spacious place available. hostingas we enjoy authors at our store on connecticut avenue northwest, we had a feeling a somewhat larger than you would be needed for this one. ] heers] and applause >> in fact, this is the largest p&p has ever sponsored. tickets sold out in a matter of minutes. congratulations, you are the lucky ones. since the release of week ago,
hillary clinton's new book about the 2016 election has landed on the best seller list and generated seemingly nonstop commentary and conversation. change.ngs never hillary has given a number of media interviews about the book. tonight she is in with us in person for what is the first stop on a 15-city tour that will take her across the united states and cap -- canada. in the days and weeks immediately following the election, hillary took long walks in the woods with her dogs, consumed more than a few glasses of chardonnay, and tried and tried to regain her bearings. now, 10 months later, she's back with renewed strength and fresh purpose and with a thoughtful and very personal account of why she lost and the lessons that can be learned from what was in so many ways a deeply confounding and disturbing race.
many, of course, are very familiar with hillary's long and storied career. from lawyer and advocate to children to first lady of arkansas, first lady of the why you had states, u.s. senator from new york, u.s. secretary of state, and the democratic party's presidential candidate. [applause] >> she is the daughter of hugh and dorothy, wife of bill, mother of chelsea, and grandmother of charlotte and aden. along the way hillary has also managed to write books.
in fact, this is her sixth. and reviewers of it so far seem to agree on at least one thing. in these pages she is less guarded than ever before, more revealing, blunt, and authentic. she says she didn't intend the book to be a comprehensive recap of the campaign, and it isn't. but it does convey with raw emotion, humor, and insight how it folet to run for president as the first woman nominated by a major american political party. and how it has felt to deal with the aftermath of a shocking defeat. and one other thing comes through loud and clear in "what happened?" hillary intends to remain active and to speak out. [applause] >> hillary will be in conversation up here with my wife lissa. the two of them go back a long way. at various times over the past two and a half decades, lissa has worked with hillary as chief speechwriter, communications director, book collaborator, and campaign adviser, including several stints helping in the 2016 campaign. currently, lissa is writing her own book about her experiences
as part of hillary land, the small group of staffers, mostly women, who started with hillary 25 years ago in the white house and have remained in her orbit since. i'd also like to take a moment to recognize that in the audience this evening are a number of members of hillary's 2000 campaign staff. they're out there somewhere. [applause] >> they toiled mightily for months to help their candidate earn nearly 3 million more votes than the republican nominee. [applause] >> and now, ladies and gentlemen, please join me in welcoming the woman who won more than 65,800,000 votes in the last election, hillary rodham clinton. [applause] [cheering]
[cheers and applause] lissa: thank you all so much for coming. you sound like 65,800,000 people. [applause] lissa: this is great. and it's such a great crowd. thank you all for being here. thank you for being here. i feel like we just did this. but that was three years ago. we did it for your last book, "hard choices" and we're back for "what happened." it's what happened. it is not what happened question mark. it's not what happened exclamation point. it's not what happened but just what happened. congratulations. book number six.
by the way, produced in record time. i might add. it is a very personal book which i'm sure those who have read it already know and if you've watched the interviews and heard about it, you know, but i just want to say one thing before we get started. of course it is about the 2016 election. and because hillary clinton is hillary clinton, it of course goes deeply into a very broad range of very, very important issues from the erosion of our democratic institutions, the growing signs of totalitarianism creeping into too many aspects of our lives, the rolling back of voting rights, healthcare, environmental protection, economic and social justice, and, of course, ongoing, seemingly daily if not hourly and more over the examples of sexism and racism across our country. so what i want to just say as we
get started is that if you don't have it yet, you'll pick your book up on the way out. in washington there's that thing where you look in the index and you kind of pick and choose what you're going to read. uh-huh. start at the beginning. reed all 469 pages because -- read all 469 pages because she has a lot to say. she has a lot to say about really, really, really important challenges facing this country. and if you actually read from start to finish, you will learn a lot. and it's just fascinating and, really, important stuff in the book. so thank you for that. but tonight we'll try to keep it a bit more personal. i am going to remind you we had a conversation back in the early winter and you mentioned you were thinking about writing a book about the election. we had several more conversations over the next weeks and months.
each time i said to her, emphatically, you are nuts. that is a crazy idea. why would you do that? it's way too soon. you're still processing everything. we're all still processing everything. i don't know about the rest of you and i don't know about you but everybody i know was experiencing weird things like insomnia and anxiety, gastrointestinal disorders. [laughter] lissa: a friend of mine who is a doctor in washington said it is an election related syndrome known as trump-arrhea. ok. so we're all going through all this, right? i didn't see how you could possibly in such a short space of time and so soon after this election process all of it for yourself and of course you're the central actor in it. so i advised you consistently not to write it. and of course thankfully she didn't listen to me.
that was very wise on your part. and now here we are with this wonderful book. i just am wondering though how did you process it so quickly? and apparently this did not involve any therapy along the way. [laughter] ms. clinton: that's a sign of something. actually it was my therapy, to be really clear. lissa has been a friend of mine and a colleague of mine for a long time now. is a terrific writer, was a great reporter when she worked for "the post" and other publications. so i take what she says very seriously when it comes to writing. she did come to see me like a number of my friends who rallied around, came to support me, you know, just listen to me vent, share their concerns and worries, and i had, after the
election as you can read in the book pretty much nothing i wanted to say to anybody. i was so devastated, and it was incredibly painful, and it took weeks of just getting up every day, cleaning closets, going for walks in the woods, all of the things that i did, to begin to clear my head. but, of course, other people were commenting and writing about the election, and i just didn't think there was a broad enough view, really, and
comprehensive understanding of what it looked like to me in real time and what i believed happened, but i wasn't sure and i knew it would take a lot of analysis and evidence gathering and, you know, i do kind of believe in facts. [applause] ms. clinton: so, you know, i just began to talk and listen to people gather information and i think that it hit me really around the inauguration, people had talked to me about what are you going to do and, you know, will you write something else? i was still just trying to muddle through. it really hit me that there were these very important issues that needed to be discussed, debated, even, that our democracy and
country relied upon that kind of self-examination, and i thought, well, i need to know what happened and i need to be as honest, candid, open as i possibly can in order to figure it out for myself. and maybe, doing it in a book, would provide the discipline, the deadline to try to think it through. and so, really, starting in february i dove in and i just decided i was going to write it. it was painful. i say in the book that i'd write about something and i'd have to go lie down. because it was just so hard to think about the mistakes i made, you know, missed opportunities. but then, also, to come to grips with these other big forces at work that i think had a determinative impact on the outcome. it ended up being really cathartic for me, personally.
from what people are telling me as i've begun to do book signings and talking about the book, i think it does provide some catharsis and some opportunity for reflection for a lot of other people, too. i am very happy about that, because there are really important issues we have to come to grips with, and i wrote it not just to say what happened but what we need to do to make sure what happened doesn't happen again. and that's what i'm going to spend a lot of time on. [applause] lissa: amen. just to follow up for a second on this, how hard it is, as i said, you are the central actor, you're writing about yourself and it was obviously a mind boggling experience. you and i share a favorite author in cheryl strayed. i don't know how many of you have read "wild" or seen the movie. you have a quote from her in the book. i may have mentioned she once said to me, i asked her, how do you write about these things that are so deeply personal? she said, i write to get to a deeper truth. if i'm not going to be honest with myself why do i bother to write? but getting to that deeper truth
as you have experienced is painful, overwhelming, could be sad, and you have to deal with things that are intensely private. did you censor yourself at all? what did you do to try to get to the next level? ms. clinton: i ended up not censoring my thoughts, what i put into the book. i will admit i censored some of the original language i used. lissa: oh, shucks. should have left that in. ms. clinton: yes. some of those early venting sessions. i had a great team of people who vented with me. and did research for me. and helped, you know, me better explain what i was venting about. i didn't hold back at all on what i saw as my own short comings and deep disappointment
not just for me obviously but for the country. it was not censored. it was really candid and did help me get to bigger and deeper truths about me, about our country, about some of the really difficult forces that we have to face, the concerns i have about i'm sure we'll get into it, sexism and misogyny and race and the russians and voter suppression. there's a lot there that i was learning as i was writing. because when you're in the middle of a campaign, and i know there are people here who have been involved in campaigns and for that i thank you, when you're in the middle of it you are so focused on the immediate tasks. you know what the overall goal is obviously to win and you've
got your strategies and your tactics lined up. but, boy, every day is 18 hours of just the hardest concentration and work trying to move things forward. it is hard to lift your head up and sometimes it's hard to really understand everything that's happening at the same time, so being able to step back a little, go through it, take it apart, look at it, analyze it, and then write about it helped me a lot. lissa: did you learn anything about yourself that you didn't know?
ms. clinton: you know, i really believed that -- i think in retrospect it was a misconception or certainly out of sync with the time in which we're living and the candidate i ended up running against. i did have this idea based on my prior experiences in presidential campaigns really going way back into the late 1960's that it mattered greatly if you could make clear what you wanted to achieve. didn't have to have all the details but it was important to tell people what you wanted to do. then when you were in office they could judge you on whether or not you were fulfilling that commitment you made. so we spent a lot of time making sure that everything i said about policy and how we pay for things and all of that was just bullet proof because i kept thinking at some point it's really going to matter. and for all sorts of reasons, it didn't. i think i stayed way too focused on a path that was not the direction that the campaign was heading because of the pressures from outside forces, because of the reality tv candidate i was
running against, i think that i was not as adept or as quick to try to figure out, ok. what is a better way for me to try to communicate this? you know, these are things that, you do the best you can and you think you're running one kind of campaign and you realize that the press is not covering the policy you're putting out every day. they're covering an empty podium. i kept thinking, we're still going to break through because people really do care what kind of jobs and infrastructure and healthcare and other things you want to do for them and their families and their incomes, but there was a disconnect. so i learned that i just wasn't -- i wasn't as i think quick to try to make some adjustments along those lines.
lissa: you also say in the book that you developed a new appreciation for big, simple ideas. i think that's part of what you're getting at, isn't it? ms. clinton: well, there is a difference. the big, simple ideas, i still believed, you know, that a big, simple idea like we're going to raise taxes on the wealthy, that is a big, simple idea. i did have that idea very much centered in my campaign, but there is also i think an important debate about in politics today when we have a really intense, quick movement of news and it's very short attention span and social media plays a bigger and bigger part, you know, trying to develop a relationship with voters or to engender confidence in voters
that you know what you're talking about and you're going to deliver because you do understand the complexities may not be as significant as just repeating those big ideas over and over again and leaving the details for later. who knows, though? by 2020 maybe people will want to know details again and policy again. you never know. [applause] lissa: to be clear she is not saying big, simple ideas without details, just not outlining every single detail ahead of time, necessarily. which i thought was a pretty interesting observation. just one other quick thing about what it feels like because you're so revealing in the book about what it feels like to be a presidential candidate. of course, you've got constant incoming, right, good, bad, medium.
you're trying to assess all sorts of information from all sorts of people all the time. and it was interesting to me in the book that you say in a number of places that there were times when you wish you had struck back when you've been criticized or challenged by bernie on wall street and other things. by matt lauer in that really awful interview. by comey. and then of course we had the "jaws" imitation by trump on the debate stage. [laughter] lissa: in each of those -- i just want to say, also, by the way, even though you didn't say it, do you know how much it warmed the hearts of tens of millions of americans to know that you thought about saying "back up, you creep?" [cheering] lissa: but in those situations -- honestly it was such a relief to know you were thinking about it. in those situations you weren't able to do that and you felt yourself constrained. you say you felt like you were in a straitjacket at times. what is it that makes it so hard
to be able to do that in those situations? i'm sure it has something to do with being a woman but i'll let you answer that. ms. clinton: i think it does have a lot to do with being a woman because it's very hard to be perceived as strong as opposed to aggressive or any other word you can think of. so part of the challenge is how you modulate, how you present yourself in a mature, appropriate way as a woman seeking a job, no other woman has ever had. and i write a whole chapter on being a woman in politics. but much of what i say goes for being a woman in business, being a woman in any profession. it's not just politics. i think as i tried to describe my thought process up on that stage in the second debate, it
was hard. we had practiced what i would do if he invaded my space, because we kind of assumed he would, because he had his own issues that he was trying to, you know, push through at that time. so we knew it. but once you're there and it is actually happening to you in real time in front of, i don't know, 60 million people or something, you are discomfited, you are annoyed. you are a little frustrated that he is stalking you and staring at you. and so i was going back and forth. but i had believed that it's better not to show that kind of reaction in the middle a presidential debate. as you might think back, funny gestures, facial expressions,
heavy sighs, things really do affect viewers and i just ended up believing that in addition to the gender-linked aspect of this, there was a history of people in presidential debates who had deviated in a way to show frustration, anger, dismissiveness, whatever their feelings were, and paid a heavy price for it and i thought, whatever price they paid, i would pay double or triple. so i just thought, ok. you know, i sort of thought at the end of the day people would say, yeah. we really do want somebody who is calm and composed in the oval office.
[applause] so i was aware of all the different cross currents, but i carried on in a way that i thought was what a president or somebody who wants to be president should do. lissa: you say in the book and i think you are referring to longer than this campaign that you sort of have to wear your composure like a suit of armor and that's what you did. ms. clinton: yeah. but you know everybody in this audience knows that feeling that the next day or the middle of the night you wake up and say oh, if only i hadn't said that. there is always that. you do -- it is the toughest job in the world. it's a job that requires or at least used to require a level of -- [applause] -- you know, curiosity and focus and things that you'd want to think somebody with that responsibility would have.
and i honestly believed we were in a different kind of campaign unlike any i had ever seen before. i've watched people go up and down in campaigns. i've worked in them. i, you know, was deeply involved obviously in my husband's two campaigns. i know the ebb and flow of a campaign. this was really different. i don't think anybody fully grasps how it was a variation on a presidential campaign unlike any we've ever seen. i, now looking back, see a lot of different, you know, signals about that, that maybe i could have and my campaign could have done a better job trying to figure out how to push back on or make more transparent so that people would understand, you know, boy, i'll tell you what, that campaign of his. they have the best empty podium that anybody's ever seen.
i mean, get people to think and even laugh a little bit about what was happening in that campaign. that didn't happen soon enough and didn't happen in quite enough places. lissa: did you watch the emmys last night at all? [laughter] [applause] ms. clinton: i did. i did. lissa: i think many people may know you and your husband are big fans of television dramas and comedies, and if you watched as i'm sure many of you did you know the hand maid's tale was a big winner. [applause] lissa: and you and i have actually talked about that book in the past, written in 1985, a work of fiction that of course is now this wildly popular tv series that is about a liberal democracy slowly and very definitively becoming a totalitarian state, which of course is sadly and distressingly resonant at the moment.
that whole idea of the normalization of the abnormal is terrifying. by the way, doesn't it just bug you when people say trump is -- this is the new normal? we should never call it normal, right? we should never say -- it's like the new abnormal. not the new normal. but, i mean, seriously. it is terrifying and the hand maid tale resonates because of that. you do talk about that in your book from voter suppression, from the manipulation of the media to fake news to everything else. just the assault on the democratic institutions we rely on that we need to be able to trust. ms. clinton: well, part of the reason i was motivated to write this is because of what happened at the inauguration and i write
the first chapter about what it felt like to go to the inauguration. and what a hard decision it was but how i thought it was important to show continuity of our government. i was certainly hoping to hear words of reconciliation and bringing the country together after a very divisive campaign. didn't hear that. and i felt very uneasy about that inauguration. i've been to a bunch of them. i've been when people i supported won and people i supported lost. but this was different. this was not a normal inauguration. and then it was made even more surreal with the claims about the crowd size and the introduction of alternative facts.
and then i started thinking, whoa. this is much more than just transfer from a two-term democratic president to an unusual but, you know, republican president. and i just couldn't really grasp how big a challenge they intended to pose to facts and evidence and reason. all of which are fundamental to the functioning of a democracy like ours, and so when i saw that -- [applause] ms. clinton: -- i thought, you know, this is much, much bigger than any transfer of
presidential power that i'm aware of in recent history, because of the assumptions that the new administration was operating on and the brazenness of their attempt to distort reality and impose that version of facts and truths on all the rest of us despite what we saw with our own eyes. that bothered me greatly, because i said before, if i had lost, you know, to another republican candidate, somebody else emerged from the republican primary, i would have felt bad. i would have been really disappointed.
but i wouldn't have worried about the fundamental future of our country, our institutions, our rule of law, and this imperative of reason that motivated our founders and which is still absolutely essential. so i think this became a resonant theme with me, because you can disagree about policies, you can disagree about all kinds of things, but you can't begin to chip away at the basis of our government's functioning and our democratic norms without paying a very big price. so, yes. in the book i -- you won't be surprised -- i mention the handmaid's tale. i mention 1984. i mention "brave new world." because i want readers to say, ok. i may not agree with everything she says, but you know what? i have to agree with this fundamental premise that we can't sacrifice truth and facts on the altar of partisanship and the desire on the part of a
particular president and his administration to control the news, to undermine the first amendment, to just create this alternate reality. because i think the stakes of what we face in this time are just profound. and i said before, and i will repeat it here, i think that this president and the people who serve him on this alternative reality track are posing a clear and present danger to the future of our country. [applause] lissa: i think one of the most colorful, clearest, most persuasive chapters in the book is the one about controls and russian and fake news.
you have a line from a book that begins, when reason fails the devil helps. and then of course you talk about trolls bots, fake news, and my favorite term "from russia with no love." in all seriousness, this is an incredibly clear connecting of dots based on what evidence is now available. presumably there will be more coming out. thank you for that because it is really essential that everybody read that. i also have never had a chance to thank you for something publicly that i would like to thank you for now. how many of you were in washington during what is now infamously known as pizzagate?
[applause] lissa: ok. and those of you who have been to "politics and prose" on connecticut avenue know the store is only a few doors down and you of course were on to this stuff because of what was going on in the campaign before a lot of us realized the extent of it. you and i spoke shortly after the election and you knew comet was being targeted and politics and prose and some of the other businesses were being targeted and you said you were willing to speak out about it, for which we were grateful. at the time everybody thought we needed to lie low for a bit. the day the gunman with the assault weapon walked into comet on december 4, about an hour after that you and i communicated and i told you what was going on and you responded instantly and were so supportive, which was incredibly helpful. we were all on lockdown on the entire block with police running up and down the streets.
and then, and people that know this, a few days after that you and your husband said what can we do to support comet? can we buy pizzas? you bought i don't know how many pizzas but a lot of pizzas and sent them to an after school literacy program in d.c., which was never publicized. [applause] lissa: and you checked in on me a lot because we were not dealing with it the same way but we were getting trolled and the whole nine yards and harassment calls. i can't tell you how important it was for me, for brad, for our entire staff, our entire block for the people at comet to know that you and president clinton were there for us. quietly and nobody knew. i've never had a chance to thank you publicly. [applause] lissa: i did want to do that. so thank you. ms. clinton: if i could just say a word because we're in washington and this horrible
chain of events happened here. but this is a terrible example of what can be done by people who are malicious, unacquainted with the truth, and pursuing their own agendas whether it be commercial advantage, partisan advantage, or any other goal. for those who don't follow it or may not remember it when john podesta's e-mails were stolen, i hate the word hacked, they were stolen. they were stolen by the russians. [applause] ms. clinton: and they were then,
through cut-outs, given to wikileaks, which is nothing more than a tool of putin and the kremlin. [applause] ms. clinton: and, certainly, people associated with trump knew about it because in august roger stone was tweeting about how john podesta would find himself, you know, in the barrel at some point ahead. so on october 7, one of the more infamous days in the campaign, the day started with the director of homeland security, the secretary, jeh johnson, the director of national intelligence, jim clapper, saying that with high confidence they knew the russians had been behind those hacks, those thefts of e-mails. that happened in the morning. then hollywood access tape broke a few hours later. and within one hour, such an amazing coincidence, wikileaks dumped all of john podesta's personal e-mails.
now, if you read those e-mails, i think it's a little embarrassing to admit they were very boring. but because they were, the way that the russians and their allies whoever they turn out to be were able to -- [applause] ms. clinton: -- were able to generate constant interest, really, was two factors. one, they sent the press on these wild goose chases all over the place. oh, here comes a hundred more. here comes a thousand more. oh, my gosh. then of course the other was they created the illusion of transparency. if you think you're getting something from sort of behind the screen, maybe it's more legitimate even though you're being plagued by a bunch of russians. and the psychology of it was brilliant. and, of course, it's part of the
russian propaganda effort, something called active measures which they've used in many other settings, not just in our election. well, you can only go so far with read these e-mails and listen to people as in every campaign you can imagine debate about what to do when and who says what and all of that, so they had to be weaponized. they had to have elements plucked out and perverted in a way that would be hard to imagine and then sent back out into the cyber virtual world. so in one of the e-mails, john podesta is talking about pizza. he's italian and greek, i mean, you know. [laughter] lissa: and a very good cook. ms. clinton: a very good cook. his risotto recipe is still
there if you want to see it. i'm sure there is something very nefarious about that recipe. so all of a sudden john is writing about pizza and one of these really, i consider evil people, in the media world, and in the online world, out of whole cloth make up this story that john podesta and i are running a child trafficking ring in the basement of the comet pizza parlor. lissa: by the way, there is no basement. ms. clinton: yeah. there is no basement. now, you would think people would be laughing like crazy, shaking their heads, but if you
migrate that crazy story to facebook posts, to news outlets, there are people who will believe that, including this very unfortunate young man in north carolina who believed it. it was meant to be believed to influence voting. even i have to say i don't believe it was meant to be believed to influence somebody to pick up an ar-15 and drive from north carolina to washington to liberate the imaginary children from the imaginary basement of the pizza parlor. but in came this young man, believing that he was on a mission, because he saw it on facebook. he saw it in other places online. he saw it in, "news outlets" and so he was there on a mission of rescue. people could have gotten killed.
he shot his automatic weapon off inside this pizza parlor. the street where politics and prose is was shut down. it was an active crime scene because people who cared more about weaponizing information, making negative stories up, than the truth, than facts, or even public safety, and, certainly, any concern about children was nonexistent, they were determined to stimulate, to propagate the attitudes that would grab some people in some states, some congressional districts, some towns and counties, so that they would be saying, well, gosh, you know, if hillary clinton and her campaign chairman are doing something like that, they should go to jail. i can't vote for that. i can't vote for that. that's the worst example, but there are so many other examples that were the same pattern, from stealing to giving to wikileaks, to propagating, to weaponizing
into somebody's, you know, google chain, into somebody's facebook post, and i think it's one of the most serious challenges we face going forward in politics, not just at the presidential level, but up and down. because if we don't get a handle , on information that is not just controversial, protected by the first amendment, but aimed at spreading lies to the extent that they can cause behavior like we saw in this terrible instance, it will not stop. and i'm glad that the congress and others are looking at facebook and twitter and google because they are the vehicle, one of the very first vehicles to deliver this kind of information to people.
but i was just terrified for lissa and brad and all their employees and everybody on that street. because i could see what the trafficking of that absolutely horrible information was meant to do, and it got out of hand, and we were just fortunate that nobody was injured. and it, you know, keeps going. lissa: but the consolation, and there is consolation, that the outpouring of support from our community was unbelievable for comet, for politics and prose. [applause] people feel tremendous ownership about their communities, and, you know, i might just say, mike pence at that time was living about a mile away in a rented house before he could move into the vice president -- we'd see his motorcade up and down. did he once think about coming in, buying a slice of pizza, of course not.
but the community has been fantastic and any of you who have come to comet or come to p & p after that, thank you. it really made a huge difference. ok. [applause] i want to be a little lighter for a second here. so there is a very funny moment in the book where when you say that president obama told you, don't try to be hip. you're a grandma. [applause] [laughter] just be yourself. my question, did he think you were going to run off to a soul cycle class or take a mixology course? what was he worried about? ms. clinton: there are probably so many examples. lissa: i'm just wondering. president obama, it's ok. ms. clinton: no. he was an extraordinarily supportive and helpful friend throughout the whole campaign. he would call me periodically and he would say, are you getting enough sleep? are you, you know, eating well?
i'd say oh, i think i'm getting enough sleep. i think i'm eating well. he'd say are you exercising? i'd say i think i'm getting enough sleep and i think i'm eating well. [laughter] ms. clinton: he really, you know, stayed up with me. stayed up with the campaign. and i can't remember which of the incidents he might have been referring to, but he was always just in my corner and had my back throughout the whole, you know, 18 months or nearly two years. [applause] lissa: ok. so you love words. she is a great writer herself, by the way. you love words. your husband loves words. did anybody see president clinton's guest cross word puzzle in the "new york times" a few months ago? that was pretty cool. we're going to play little word game if that's ok. you up for this? ok. it is going to get -- have you ever heard of the game boxers or briefs? ms. clinton: what? et the bank "boxers or briefs
[laughter] lissa: you know, like if you're a guy, are you like boxers or brief? we're going to play that brief but don't worry. you don't have to answer that question. and i'm going to give you two words. and you just have to, without thinking, this book is very revealing but, you know, people know now exactly which kind of hot sauce you like and they know you do deep breathing and all that stuff. we're just going to help them out with a few more things. i'm going to give you two words. you are going to just immediately, whichever one most suits you you're going to anne. -- you're going to answer. are you ready? ms. clinton: i do have to say a word about hot sauce first. ok.a bank clinton: i have carried hot sauce since 1992. i just want you to know. [laughter] there were people who were accusing me of just making that up. it is not made up. i do spend more time than i should in the book talking about hot sauce.
so -- [laughter] if anybody wants any recommendations, just let me know. lissa: it is true as long as i , have known you, hot sauce has always been in your purse. that is true, we can all vouch for her. this is going to get progressively harder. tea of coffee? ms. clinton: coffee. lissa: beach or mountains? ms. clinton: beach. lissa: shower or bath? ms. clinton: well, these are all really unfair. [laughter] and that is particularly unfair. this a bank these are easy! ms. clinton: they depend on how much time you have. lissa: pilates or yoga? >> yoga. lissa: vodka or chardonnay? ms. clinton: again, it depends
lissa: i was going to say comey or comey? we are going to take some audience questions. you guys had great questions, there weren't zillions of them and a lot of them were similar. first of all, a lot of people just said thank you. [laughter] [applause] quite a few also related to young people, and young women especially, and getting into politics. here is one. [applause] there are two that are similar. what advice would you give to our young woman who was trying --go into politics, and what would you encourage your daughter to enter politics if she were interested, but you knew she would experience the same level of sexism you have encountered junior medical career? ms. clinton: let me answer this question in general. i would say this to any woman who were to ask.
i would say look, even though i write at length about the challenges that women in politics face, i would point out that it is not just me, it is not just democratic women, it is unfortunately still a very tough double standard. i would still say that if you are willing to enter politics either as a candidate, a campaign staffer, as a person in government and public service, because that is how i view the bigger definition of politics, you just have to be prepared and try to have the confidence without being walled off, too defensive. it is easy for me to say, i have been all of those things at
various points in my public career, but it is a really great experience. it is important to have more women in politics and it is important that we all support eachother in the political arena. [applause] one of the great quotes that i have loved for years is eleanor roosevelt saying for any woman who wants to enter the public arena she should grow the skin as thick as a rhinoceros. because you will be judged from everything, from your hair, to your voice, to whether you are married or not married, whether you have children or don't have children, so it is a constant gotcha game. you have to be clear about why you are going politics and what
you hope to achieve through your efforts. i say in the book, by pulling the curtain back and talking about how hard it is, i do not want to discourage anybody. i want people to be more aware. so we can call it out for what it is. this is common across every walk of life. there is a fascinating article in the new york times sports section about women in sports and the grief they take because of their voice. as someone who has been called everything when it comes to well, everything, that am speaking particularly about voice, it really struck home with me. you have to be prepared, you have to at least have a physics -- a sense of humor, to get through some of what you are going to face.
but if you are prepared and you dedicate yourself, if you are surrounded by good supporters and friends and family, people who can tell you the truth, like off by saying that she did not think it was a good idea for me to write this book. you need someone like that, someone would tell you something is a good idea or a bad idea. i'm grateful for this. i think it is really important. i have this organization that i started and really the primary -[laughter] [applause] purpose is to reward groups, those recruiting young women especially, training them. funding them. we also lift up wonderful groups like "indivisible" which is leading the charge to keep our attention where it needs to be. we have to stop this latest attempt to repeal the affordable care act that is going on. [applause]
i think there is a lot of good work to be done! lissa: it is really interesting you met with howard dean and mchale, who were instrumental in coming up how to -- in figuring out how to involve young people. ms. clinton: after the election, one of the things that got me out of bed and moving were the stories i would hear, people who would say there is this a new group that one of your campaign staffers has started. it is aiming at recruiting more young people. [applause] there is a group called swing left, they are going to try to flip the house. [applause] or another group i have worked with before, "emergent america" which has a great record of
pushing women. or "color of change" which focuses on african-american young people, getting them into politics. there is so much we can do because at the end of the day and i just have to say this and hope you help me figure out how we're going to make it happen, everything we do, we can write books, speak out, go to protests but if we do not get people to vote, starting in virginia and new jersey and then in 2018 we are not going to turn this around. [applause] ms. clinton: it is gratifying to see how many people who were never thinking about getting into office now are. ms. clinton: which of the democratic party should run in the next election? not an easy question.
ms. clinton: i think it has been both economic and social justice. [applause] you know, we have the better side of the argument about how to make the economy grow, be inclusive, lift income, provide opportunity. we have to keep plugging away and not get discouraged. we have to keep calling out the other side whose answer to everything is tax cuts for the wealthy. i can imagine a scene in a republican members called home and their kid called saying they do not feel good and they say take a tax cut, you will do better in the morning. [laughter] because it answers everything! whatever ails you! i mean, that is really the inside story of what is going on
with this attempt to repeal the affordable care act, it is to free up money for tax cuts for the wealthy. we have to keep talking and not get discouraged because sometimes we think we make a great argument but it does not take the first time. we have to keep going at it, time and time again. we cannot be promoting and standing up for economic justice to the exclusion of turning our back on all the progress we have made in moving people forward on civil rights and women's rights and gay rights and human rights. [applause] ms. clinton: i just don't buy this false dichotomy, you can only be for the economy, or even only be for civil rights -- that is ridiculous. we want everyone to rise. we want everyone to have a better opportunity and future
going forward. lissa been let's talk about women for a second. we both care about women, i think most people in here do. just getting back to the "handmaid's tale". the other big subtext of " the handmaid's tale" is how women treat other women. women with and without power, women who have been marginalized, it can be very , the way-- very cruel that women treat other women. you have experienced a little bit of that yourself, you obviously. i am glad he asked about that, i read about this. i will start with a conversation i had shortly before announcing , that i was going to run. it was with sheryl sandberg. amebody that i have known for long time, and really appreciate the work that she has done with "lean in" the research, working
, with professors at stanford and the university of pennsylvania, marshaling facts and evidence, about what actually happens in women's lives, how we are perceived, how we perceive ourselves. she wished that everyone who in" wouldook, "lean understand the more professionally successful a man becomes, he becomes more likable. and you know what is coming -- the more professionally successful a woman becomes, she likable, because, our stereotypes, our presumptions about what is appropriate and not inappropriate -- appropriate and not appropriate, are so powerful, they are rooted in our dna and they go back millennia. you say if that is the case, what can we do about? the second point she made,
equally provocative, is that women are liked and viewed much more favorably when they are in service to someone else. so i was in service to our country, and in service to president obama as a member of his cabinet in the first term. -- the statet department with a 69% approval rating. [applause] people thought i was doing a good job and they thought i was doing a good job because they could see me standing up for our country, trying to solve problems, standing beside the president. what was fascinating to me, it was really horrifying but fascinating, was how effective it was to just begin to knock that down and get to the point oh, gosh, we do not
know what we think about her. sheryl sandberg make this clear, she said if you are in service , to someone else, you are viewed favorably. in the workplace, if you go to your employer and say, i think elizabeth should get a raise. she works so hard, you get points. you are viewed as someone who is a team player looking out for your colleagues. if you go and say, i have been working really hard and i would , like to be can enter for a -- to be considered for a raise, if you are a woman, it is held against you. if you are a man, it is not. these are just attitudes that are deeply embedded in how we eat women in the public arena -- how we see women in the public arena. i won the women's vote but i lost the white women's vote. i got more white women's votes however, then president obama did in 2012.
so the problem is one that am a credit nominees have to contend with, have to figure out -- one tot democratic nominees have contend with, have to figure out . i personally believe i was doing well enough with white women before the comey letter but it stopped my momentum and played into the concerns that women have about whether they are , making a mistake with their vote. i started going door to door in politics many years ago and i was always surprised when i auld knock on our door and woman would answer and i would say, i am here for this candidate. and that one would say, i just do not know enough, i do not want to make a mistake. that was my personal experience
and of course, taking it to the last month of this campaign, all of a sudden people are being told you know what, something is going on. they are going to investigate her again. or whatever. we could see, a lot of women in particular turned away. they were discouraged. i do not blame them. they did not know what to believe. i mean it is outrageous what , happened. so, you have got to see how women are trying to do what they think of as the right thing for themselves and their family. they are often under pressure from people around them. a lot of anecdotal evidence out there about that. when a woman runs she has to work extra hard to convince other women that she can do the job that she is running for and
we have made progress, not enough, in the congress and the senate. way not enough in governor's , offices. to feeling people comfortable at the presidential level is still a challenge. there are statistics in my book, democratic women and men it is not 80 or 90% who , think they want to see a woman president. it is in the high 60's for women and in the 40's for men. which is a lot higher than it is for republicans who have a lot harder time thinking about a woman in the white house. these are complicated psychological, emotional, political, economic issues. if you think there is just one answer, you're probably going to be wrong. we have to look at a much broader set of responses and appeals to persuade women to
vote for other women and try to make solidarity around them. lissa: blood of the nice things -- one of the nice things in the book, is the incredible sense of support you have from your own friends, men and women, but especially when you talk about your girlfriends. that has been true, forever, for you. you have these friendships that have gone on. thank goodness for that. women are there for other women when they are close to each other. [applause] next question from the audience. actually, no question, but they say i am drinking chardonnay with you in solidarity. [laughter] [applause] can you demonstrate alternate nostril breathing? [laughter] ms. clinton: i really do highly recommend it, it is not that hard. google it. [laughter] lissa: what has been the most of filling part of your life so
far? ms. clinton: my whole life? lissa: i guess so. printed been well, ms. clinton: my family. my friends obviously and doing work that i believe in and thought made a difference. i write in the book about, i write about my marriage, my daughter, my friends. motherhood, my mother, i write about my friends. because, at the end of the day everybody has disappointments, , everyone has losses. i view this book as much about resilience as about running for president. because, for me, having the support and the encouragement that i got from my family during the campaign and in the
aftermath certainly, and my friends, you made all the difference as to how i felt. summon theould energy and the commitment to continue to play a public role and be a part of causes and values that i care about. so i think i am a very fortunate and i want others, no matter what happens to you in life, to understand that there are ways to get up and keep going and do not give up on yourself. do not give up on your friends, on people you care about. [applause] lissa: here is a serious question we are all distressed about. what is your advice for federal workers facing the internal destruction of their agencies especially at epa? you. we miss
[applause] ms. clinton: wow, you know, i am so distressed because there is so much experiences, expertise among federal employees across our government and it has been hard won, years in the making and there seems to be a total disregard, even content on the -- even a contempt on the part of many in this administration, for what federal workers know, and what they have done, and the advice that they can give! the other night, i was talking with rachel maddow about this, when it came to the state department -- [applause] have such a high regard for so many of the foreign service officers and civil service
members that i worked with on all levels at the state department. i think about some of the crisis that we confront, like north korea -- people who know the language, know the history, have experience in the korean peninsula and china and japan, they should be sitting in meetings with the highest levels of this administration providing , advice and information that could be useful. there is such a disdain for federal workers. so i guess, i would say, if you can stick it out, stick it out. because the tide has to turn. , [applause] ms. clinton: if we an take back one or both houses of congress in 2018, will have people you could talk to again.
you will. [applause] but i know how difficult that is because i know what has happened , to people i worked with in the state department, just really being frozen out and demeaned, mistreated. i know it is not easy for me to say this but i did not want us to lose the decades of experience in the epa, the labor department, the state department. a lot of the places the targeted by the administration. i hope you can maintain a core of experienced public service in our government because at some point they are going to need you and in the country is going to need you and i hope you're still , there.
[applause] lissa: we are going to have to wrap it up unfortunately. one last audience question. what is your favorite flavor of ice cream? [laughter] ms. clinton: oh, the hard questions. my favorite flavor is chocolate. anything with chocolate and it. [applause] i did want to say a few more words about the future because that is really what i most focus on. it was important to figure out what happened in order to be better prepared and some of it is institutional, some of it is attitudinal but it can all have an effect on not just our politics, but on who we are as americans. i am concerned that a lot of
permission has been given to people to be very bigoted, to to be prejudiced, to lash out at religion, or on gender, or race, and every other kind of identifying it. i think it is very important that we do not grow weary in standing up for what we see as core american values. not permitting the clock to be turned back and people's progress to be reversed. there is a lot to be proud of, that is the resistance and people in the resistance, what they are doing every single day. [applause] and of course the great contrast i write about between the inauguration on a friday and the
women's march on a saturday -- [applause] and holding the line on repealing the affordable care act -- applause saving insurance for millions of americans is a big deal. and there are ways for everybody, to play a role. not everyone has to start an organization, or run for office but everyone can make sure you and your friends, everyone you know is registered to vote. you can be sure that if you have a free weekend, you can go canvass this year in virginia, or new jersey -- [applause] you can start looking so tediously where your best strategically where your vote will count the most. i know 24 congressional district
that have a republican member of congress in them. and so, thinking hard about how you can support people who stick their neck out and decide they are going to run, going online, to combat on troops and best to , be one of those people standing up and tweeting back or saying something on facebook -- making it clear that people are not going to be given a pass if they are promoting ,alsehoods and personal attacks or really horrible positions, whether it is white supremacy or neo-nazis or ku klux klan, whatever it might be. we are not going to let that go unanswered, because it is critical that people have a sustained commitment to taking our country back in the way w
e believe it is, at its best. in order to have the kind of future that we believe is possible. no one has more of a stake in that, then young people. i am going to spend a lot of my time supporting young people, talking with them, encouraging young people to understand the power of their votes, which is still the great unrealized opportunity in american politics and to keep having cross relationships that cross every line that is meant to divide us. obliterate them, lead integrated, full lives with each be the rebuke to those who want to divide us and undermine us.
i am very optimistic. at the end of the day, at the end of my book i talk about love , and kindness. something we talked a lot about in the campaign. it was something that was my attempt to respond to the sight of some of the rallies on the other side, the yelling, the veins bulging in next, and yelling, the pushing, the violence, you know, come on. that is not who we are. that is not who we should be. i talk a lot about what we can do and should do coming forward and at the end of the book i am optimistic. because, i really believe that we always summon up the energy and get ourselves focused right and keep moving towards that more perfect union. and i will do everything i can, to help us get there. [applause]
ms. clinton: we start the book with harriet tubman and keep going. lissa bank this book is really a collection of your favorite sources of inspiration, quotes, and phrases. first of all thank you for not night. quietly into the [applause] lissa: i just wanted to a us, cane of us, none of afford to go quietly away. voices,ton: we need our our energy, and yes, i really do believe that it the village or
, in this case am a takes a country to get us back on the right track. [applause] it is very consistent with my belief that we have to bring people together to work together. this children's version of it takes a village is intended to say we all have to work together. maybe you think it is politically correct. i think it is america at its best. [applause] so, we are not going to go anywhere! we are still going to be here, and still fighting, and till --still moell moving ving! lissa: you are a model for a lot of people who wonder what they can do. i want to end with a few quotes that you include in your book. i figure we can all turn to as we resist, insist, persist, and enlist.
nelson mandela, the greatest glory is not in never falling that in rising, every time you fall. ts eliot there is only the trying. ralph waldo emerson, " life goes on." the best one, and we will end on this one, this is most appropriate for this evening, most appropriate for you and what you have done for this country for the last 25 years and will for the next 25 plus years -- [applause] maya angelou, "but still i rise." thank you so much for coming out. [applause] applause]
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find it in c-span's video library or at these been.org. -- c-span.org. c-span, where history unfolds daily. washington journal, live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. tomorrow, a look at the hurricane damage which have been in barbuda and antigua. talking about the north korean weapons program. and someone from health talk will talk about the upcoming health care roll out. and the rising cost of description drugs. be sure to watch, live at 7:00 eastern on tuesday morning. join the discussion. ♪ >> also had in the morning, the senate committee considers the nomination of former governor of utah, jon huntsman, to be ambassador to russia.