June 24th, 2008
04:40 PM ET
8 years ago

Clinton turns attention back to the Senate



Clinton talked with reporters about her first trip back to the Capitol since ending her presidential bid. (Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (CNN) - After wrapping up the longest presidential primary campaign in modern history, Hillary Clinton told reporters Tuesday she is ready to turn her attention back to being the junior senator from New York.

"I look forward to being back with this great team," she said as she returned to the Senate at the end of a two-week vacation, taken after she conceded the 17-month-long primary contest to Sen. Barack Obama.

Watch: Clinton greeted with cheers

The second-term New York Democrat pledged to "immerse myself in there," pointing to the chamber.

She had just emerged from the party's weekly luncheon that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called "one of the most emotional caucuses" he's ever attended on Capitol Hill. He said the New York senator entered the event to a sea of high fives, cheers, and a standing ovation from her Democratic colleagues.

Clinton said the opportunity to run for the Oval Office allowed her to "immerse myself in the extraordinary resilience and resourcefulness that is the American people."

Listen to Clinton's comments

"And I come back with an even greater depth of awareness about what we have to do here in Washington," she said. "So many of the concerns that people have expressed to me over the course of this campaign are ones that they can't individually solve. They can't even really take it on just at the state or local level."