Hillary Rodham Clinton

Clinton, Hillary Rodham (rŏdˈəm) [key], 1947–, American lawyer and political figure, wife of U.S. President Bill Clinton, b. Chicago, grad. Wellesley College (B.A. 1969), Yale Law School (LL.B., 1973). After law school she served on the House panel that investigated the Watergate affair. She was in private practice from 1977 until 1992, becoming an expert on children's rights. After her husband's election as president, she initially played a highly visible role in his administration, co-chairing the task force that proposed changes in the U.S. health-care system. Less publicly involved in policy issues after that program failed to gain support, she won sympathy for her support of her husband during the Lewinsky scandal and impeachment proceedings. She became the first first lady to be subpoenaed by a grand jury when she testified about the Whitewater affair in 1996. In 2000, Clinton won election as a Democrat to the U.S. senate from New York, becoming the first wife of a president to win election to public office; she was reelected in 2006. A candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008, she ultimately narrowly lost to Barack Obama, but she subsequently served (2009–13) as his secretary of state after he was elected president. Clinton is the author of It Takes a Village (1996) and the memoir Living History (2003).

See biographies by D. Radcliffe (1994), D. Brock (1996), G. Sheehy (1999), G. Troy (2006), Carl Bernstein (2007), and J. Gerth and D. Van Natta, Jr. (2007); W. H. Chafe, Bill and Hillary: The Politics of the Personal (2012).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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