[ 2016-11-10 ]
Hillary Clinton delivers painful concession speech
With those simple words, Hillary Clinton, who
thought she would wake up Wednesday as the first
woman president-elect but crashed to a stunning
election defeat to Donald Trump, ended her White
House quest and likely her political career.
The Democratic nominee unequivocally conceded the
presidential race, and said that the Constitution
requires a peaceful transfer of power.
"Last night, I congratulated Donald Trump and
offered to work with him on behalf of our country.
I hope that he will be a successful president for
all Americans," Clinton said.
"Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe
him an open mind and a chance to lead," said
Clinton, who was composed and dignified even as
she admitted how painful her defeat was in her
first public comments on the result of the
"This is not the outcome that we wanted and we
worked so hard for, and I am sorry that we did not
win this election," Clinton told supporters and
campaign workers in New York.
Clinton also addressed the historic achievement
for which she twice strived in losing presidential
"I know we have still not shattered that highest
and hardest glass ceiling, but someday, someone
will, and hopefully sooner than we might think
"And to all the little girls who are watching
this, never doubt that you are valuable and
powerful and deserving of every chance and
opportunity in the world to pursue and to achieve
your own dreams."
Clinton's speech was devoid of bitterness and
seemed at times to be an attempt to inspire her
supporters about the virtues of public service and
of fighting for what they believe.
But she also put Trump on notice that the core
American values which many Democrats believe Trump
abhors, citing his proposals for a ban on Muslim
immigration and rhetorical assaults on female
journalists during his campaign, would not be
"Our constitutional democracy enshrines the
peaceful transfer of power and we don't just
respect that, we cherish it. It also enshrines
other things: the rule of law, the principle that
we are equal in rights and dignity, freedom of
worship and expression. We respect and cherish
these values too and we must defend them."
Much of the seating at Clinton's remarks was for
staff and aides and the campaign was treating it
as a farewell to the people who have spent the
better part of two years working on her behalf, an
Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine
also was on hand. The Virginia senator was not
with Clinton Tuesday night.
"I'm proud of Hillary, because she loves this
country," said Kaine, who had tears in his eyes,
as he delivered introductory remarks.
Aides throughout the ballroom were sobbing during
Clinton's remarks. Quiet moments in the speech
were filled with tears, sniffles and some sobs.
Clinton's top aides, seated in the front row, were
almost all crying.
Robby Mook, Clinton's campaign manager, was wiping
away tears. Nick Merrill, Clinton's traveling
press secretary, was weeping.
The most somber moment in Clinton's speech was
when she specifically noted her impact to women
"To all the women and especially the young women
who put their faith in this campaign and in me, I
want you to know that nothing has made me prouder
than to be your champion," Clinton said, her voice
breaking with emotion.
There were audible cries -- and some sobs --
throughout the room.
Bill Clinton, while working the ropeline, wiped
Human Abedin cried during the speech but kept a
stoic face during much of the ropeline.
Clinton worked the ropeline after the event,
moving from tearful conversation to tearful
She first spoke with Anastasia Somoza, the 32-year
old woman diagnosed with cerebral palsy and
spastic quadriplegia who interned for Clinton's
Bending down to hug Somoza, Clinton told her, "You
were so wonderful in every way. I love you."
"Thank you for all your work," Clinton told
She hugged Joel Bennenson and John Anzalone, two
of her pollsters, who acknowledged to other aides
last night that they didn't see the Trump wave
She hugged Jim Margolis and Mandy Grunwald, who
created many of the campaign's television ads.
Clinton left somewhat unceremoniously, departing
through a blue curtain to the left of the room and
later to her motorcade.
Her speech marked a bitter conclusion to a
campaign that will be remembered for failing to
fully energize Democratic voters and for
squandering the party's traditional heartlands in
states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
It also marked what could be the final act on the
national stage of the Clinton double act, the
political partnership between Bill Clinton and the
former first lady and secretary of state that had
seemed poised for a remarkable comeback, 16 years
after they left the White House.
Campaign staffers had spoken throughout Clinton's
presidential bid of the extreme pressure many of
them felt in facing Trump, whom Clinton argued was
temperamentally and intellectually unfit for the
presidency and to be in charge of the US nuclear
Now she is under pressure to call on a nation,
split almost exactly down the middle, to unite
behind the next president.
Jason Miller, a Trump campaign spokesman, lauded
"Very classy speech from @HillaryClinton.
Important step in bringing our country together,"
Source - CNN
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