"I Could Have Had a Baby in the Time I've Been Campaigning"
A voter in Iowa gave Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton some advice on Tuesday: to tie her shoes.
Noticing the senator's unsecured footwear, a woman in the audience took the microphone and asked her to fix her shoes to avoid tripping and falling. Clinton laughed, then pointed out she had bought the moccasins at the Fort Dodge Museum Gift Shop (of course! Another nod to Iowa!). Then she answered the voter's substantive complaint, that elections have become too extended. Clinton said that if she could, she would shorten the process, noting that her husband had only just announced his candidacy at roughly this point in 1991.
"I could have had a baby in the time I've been campaigning," Clinton said.
The extended campaign continues for Clinton in Iowa, as she rolled along on her "middle class express" tour. She proposed a retirement savings program that would give workers a matching tax cut if they invest in an account designed to expand current 401(k) programs. Clinton ruled out privatizing Social Security, as she has in the past, and promised to strengthen the existing government program if elected president. But she said she would encourage taxpayers to save for their retirements through new, portable accounts that would ease savings efforts, particularly for women who enter and leave the workforce, small business owners, and the self-employed. Her campaign described it as one of her most important domestic policy initiatives to date.
After her speech, given in Webster City, Iowa, Clinton took questions from the audience. Her campaign had suspended question-and-answer time for a brief spell following tough questioning from an audience member on Iran on Sunday. On Tuesday, she fielded queries about exorbitant campaign costs, health insurance company regulations and Iraq.
As Clinton and her team canvass Iowa, her campaign has some Hollywood help as well. Director Rob Reiner--who's dipped into politics on the big screen before with "Primary Colors" and "The American President" --is featured in a campaign video urging volunteers to "give it a real knock" while going door-to-door on the Senator's behalf.
--Anne E. Kornblut
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