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Neha Dewan
15 Mar 2016 . 3 min read

Hillary Clinton – can she break the glass ceiling?


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A renowned lawyer, a social activist, the Senator, the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton is the first prospective woman presidential candidate of America. With more than 20 years spent in powerful positions, her life is that of endurance and perseverance.

The struggles of her mother as an abandoned child and later hearing a speech by Martin Luther King Jr. in her younger days inspired her to serve the public. She married Bill Clinton, her classmate at Yale, in 1975. As the First Lady of US from 1992 to 2000, she witnessed many professional and personal hiccups. She failed as the head of the National Health Reforms Task Force in 1993-94. The federal government incurred a cost of $73 million because of the Clinton couple’s botched investment in the real estate Whitewater project. Furthermore, her husband’s link-up with Monica Lewinsky in 1998 not only rocked the White House but their marriage as well. Though she supported him in public, it drained her emotionally. The Clintons were under huge debt when they left the White House. They charged a fee for their speeches to support the family and daughter’s education. The six hundred seventy five thousand dollars she received from Goldman Sachs culminated into a dispute.

Her political choices demonstrate her strong character. She became the first American First Lady to be elected as the U.S. Senate in 2001. She supported Barack Obama despite losing the Democratic Party’s Presidential nomination to him in 2008. When President Obama announced her appointment as the U.S. Secretary of State in 2009, she gracefully accepted the new role to serve the nation. She wriggled with many controversies during her term. For example, she was accused of unsuccessful leadership and management during the Arab Spring, a series of revolts in the middle-east nations like Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and Yemen in 2010 in response to youth unemployment and supressed freedom of expression.  Her support for the war in Iraq was widely condemned. She was also criticised for using her personal e-mail for government business communication. Moreover, she was held accountable for the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya in 2012 resulting in the demise of the U.S. Ambassador. She took full responsibility and stepped down in 2013.

Despite the struggles, she worked hard for the causes she believed in. She actively voiced her concern for women, children and LGBT rights, and worked at the policy level to ensure citizens’ access to healthcare and education.  She toiled for technological boon and internet freedom.

Last year, she made public her plan of running for the presidential race once again. She took the criticism of her last held office in her stride, accepting her mistakes and learning from them. It was evident from her memoir, Hard Choices as well as her election campaign emphasising the welfare of the people. She managed to keep ahead of her Democrat rival Bernie Sanders according to the latest CNN/ORC Poll on account of the confidence posed by the U.S. citizens in her capability for effectively solving country’s problems. Let us wait and watch if Hillary Clinton can break the highest glass ceiling of one of the most flourishing economies of the world this year.

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Neha Dewan
An environmentalist by training, I worked in the corporate sector during the initial years to find a confluence between the industries and nature. At present, I teach Biology online to higher secondary students. I love exploring the sabbatical blues faced by women like me and how the magnanimous internet could help us.

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