Hillary To Launch Presidential Campaign On Sunday

by Kirsten O'Regan

According to an unnamed source, Hillary Clinton will launch her presidential campaign Sunday with a video on social media proclaiming her candidacy. Clinton is the apparent front-runner so far in the 2016 Democratic race for the top job in the United States, and the announcement of her candidacy has been long awaited after her first bid for nomination, in 2008, was disappointed by the ascendancy of Barack Obama. According to CNN, the video announcing her candidacy will be followed by travel across the country to build on the campaign.

CNN reports that Clinton’s first stop on the official campaign trail is likely to be Iowa, an early caucus state. This information had been provided to the publication by an unnamed source reportedly “close to Clinton's campaign in waiting.” The anticipated move is seen as a gesture of humbleness by Clinton — who came in third in the 2008 caucuses, but now seems to lead the contenders for the Democratic nomination.

Being a front-runner isn’t always a barrel of laughs, and observers have spent many happy hours debating Clinton’s political aspirations — will she or won’t she — in the years between 2008 and the present moment, when it is apparent that she definitely will. A week ago, Clinton announced that she would be running her campaign from a headquarters based in Brooklyn.

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Yet another unnamed person “close to the campaign” told CNN that Clinton had already filmed the video designed to kick-start her bid. When it is released Sunday, it will apparently highlight the major themes of Clinton’s second campaign for President and indicate her serious intent to battle for the top job.

Several weeks ago, another potential Democratic presidential hopeful, Martin O’Malley, criticized the nascent campaigns of both Clinton and Republican contender Jeb Bush. O’Malley told ABC News that the presidency is not “some crown to be passed between two families.” From CNN’s reporting, it sounds as though Clinton’s video will respond to this kind of concern, in an attempt to indicate that the candidate — like her Democratic colleagues — has no interest in a “coronation.”

A key part of this campaign, and one that will presumably be highlighted in the video, will be recasting Clinton — from former first lady to current presidential candidate—and introducing this new, self-forged identity to America. But Clinton has hardly languished unheard since Bill stepped down from the presidential post. She served as Secretary of State under Obama from 2009 to 2013, and as a New York Senator.

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Since 2013, she has travelled across the country, making speeches, promoting her memoir, and supporting the Democrats in 2014 midterms. Polls reveal that there is almost one hundred percent name recognition for Hillary Clinton, so it will be intriguing to see how a very well-known woman is shown in a new light by the upcoming video.

Perhaps one difference in this campaign is that Clinton seems to be gunning to “stand out” as a female candidate. After the disappointing end to her last bid, Clinton made a speech that cast her candidacy in gendered terms. “Although we weren't able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it's got about 18 million cracks in it,” Clinton told supporters. “And the light is shining through like never before, filling us all with the hope and the sure knowledge that the path will be a little easier next time.”

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It was, as NPR reports, an unusual moment, after a campaign in which Clinton had seldom referenced her gender, and had often countered enquiries about a female presidency by saying, “I am not running as a woman.” She presumably didn't want to risk alienating male voters.

More recently, that calculus seems to have shifted. Earlier this year, Clinton gave a speech to EMILY’s List, an organization dedicated to helping elect Democratic women. “Don't you someday want to see a woman president of the United States of America?” she asked. Feminism’s star is now in ascendance, and with that rise, here comes Hillary Clinton.

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