Amid age critiques, Clinton urges ending age discrimination
April 23rd, 2014
05:42 PM ET
9 years ago

Amid age critiques, Clinton urges ending age discrimination

(CNN) – Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used remarks at a women's leadership conference in Boston to urge more female participation and, in a new comment for the former first lady, pushed to end age discrimination of women.

The push from Clinton, which came largely unprovoked and in the last question of the Wednesday event, is especially interesting considering a chorus of Republicans who are charging that Clinton will be too old to run for president in 2016.

"The other thing is to end age discrimination," Clinton said at the Simmons Leadership Conference. "You know, a lot of women who drop out of the workforce in their late 20s and their 30s, they raise their children, you know their brains have not atrophied. They still have great abilities, great talents, great opportunities to participate."

She added: "There’s an army and frankly a very large group of older women who could make a difference to America’s corporations, America’s business, academia, politics, you name it. So I think we have to be supporting these different life choices and breaking down, which often go hand-in-hand with the stereotypes we’re talking about."

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Since Clinton's daughter, Chelsea Clinton, announced last week that she was having a baby later this year, a number of Republicans have said the former secretary of state would be "old" if she ran in 2016.

The influential conservative site Drudge Report posted a black-and-white photo of an older looking Hillary Clinton atop shortly after the announcement. While the banner headline underneath read "Grandma Hillary," the subtext was obvious: Hillary Clinton is old.

Filling in for Rush Limbaugh on Tuesday, Erick Erickson, the editor of Red State, said, "She’s going to be old. I don’t know how far back they can pull her face!"

He further explained his comments in a Red State post on Wednesday morning, stating that "Any objective fact about Hillary Clinton will be declared racist, sexist, misogynist, homophobic, heterophobic, agoraphobic, xenophobic, and everything else you can think of."

If Clinton, 66, is elected president in 2016, she will be 69 years old, just a few months younger than the United States' oldest elected president: Ronald Reagan. While Clinton has acknowledged she is thinking about running for president, she has yet to announce a decision despite being the Democrats’ prohibitive favorite for the nomination.

Clinton's remarks at Simmons came in front of 3,500 businesswomen from around the world, according to organizers. Clinton delivered prepared remarks for the first half of the appearance and then took questions from Simmons College President Helen G. Drinan, some of which came from students.

The former first lady, who has long been a champion for women and children and regularly uses remarks to push for female participation, urged the women in attendance to get more involved.

"That is the only way we can open the doors to full participation for every girl and every women, to open the doors to equality and opportunity for all," she said.

Clinton also urged for raising the minimum wage as something that doesn't just help women, but instead "helps us all."

"Too many women trying to build a life and a family in our country, don't just face ceilings," she said. "They feel that the floor is shaky, even collapsing beneath them. Again, that is not only their problem, that is our problem."

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soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Gurgyl

    --all say, yes on Our Hillary16. Amen!!!

    April 23, 2014 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  2. Al-NY,NY

    and how old was the old man McCain would he have been elected? And if he's so old, did anyone with a grasp on reality want that shreiking harpie from alaska in line to take over???

    April 23, 2014 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  3. Jed_Faun

    So... when Clinton runs, the repubs say she's too old. When a much older John McCain runs, the dems say he is too old. What the the oldest age you trust for someone to be president? I am confuzzled...

    April 23, 2014 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |

    Hillly is so old she would have to take bill on a carbon date .

    April 23, 2014 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  5. Hector

    If Clinton, 66, is elected president in 2016, she will be 69 years old, just a few months younger than the United States' oldest elected president: Ronald Reagan.
    hillary is no Ronald Reagan.

    April 23, 2014 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  6. zombietimeshare

    Hillary finally has an accomplishment. She got old.

    April 23, 2014 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  7. Rick McDaniel

    That is never going to end......because companies can get away with it. In Hillary's case........if she got 2 terms she would be 77 before leaving office. That's too old in my view.

    April 23, 2014 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  8. God MAY NOT be a Liberal, but He IS a Democrat

    A couple of things that make you go . . . hmmm
    1.) Gopers decried Barack Obama as too young but now Hillary Clinton is too old?
    2.) Women typically out live men and today`s 65-year old does not look like a 65-year old did in 1981[some 30 years ago]. So if Reagan could be POTUS then, why not Ms. Clinton NOW especially because she`s a female and aging science is an order of magnitude better than it was for Ronnie?

    BTW, what has Barack Obama accomplished? Only the best deficit reduction performance in 20 years since Bill Clinton left George Bush a budget SURPLUS. Mr. Obama may well be on his way to balancing the books, especially if the GOP would work with him. As it is, his fiscal accomplishments, particularly in light of the Great Recession, are praiseworthy.

    April 23, 2014 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  9. S. B. Stein

    Just because someone is old doesn't mean they can't do the job. It is just like someone not hiring a woman or some other person who isn't like them. I've worked for various kinds of people and found that it doesn't matter if it a woman or man, homo or heterosexual as long as the job is done correctly and well.

    April 23, 2014 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  10. ED1

    Just stay out of politics and enjoy being a granny.

    April 23, 2014 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  11. Marie MD

    Oh please, don't worry about Hillary in 2016. Chelsea is having a baby and Hillary will be so taken, as a woman and grandmother, with the baby that her life will completely stop. Barf!
    I guess it's okay to demean women but the twit and his army of sons and spawns were not a problem for him nor did anyone, faux news and other media fools, seem to bring that up as a problem. Right, the twit is a man. Well, he seems to be human and look like a man.

    April 24, 2014 06:43 am at 6:43 am |
  12. sifto

    Women need to earn their respect..they are not victims..most of us have more respect for ourselves than to be labeled as "victims" . Hilary is out of touch..still living in the past..

    April 24, 2014 06:50 am at 6:50 am |
  13. devil's advocate

    Thd level of panic, and fear she instills in the gop is comical. We know she's not the greatest thing since sliced bread, but upon comparison, its a no brainer. Most hardcore right wing bloggers site reasons they don't like the left, and literally all of them are patently false, and most of them know it, but can't help but feel better voting for the rich white establishment guy. They're lives keep getting worse, and yet they refuse to accept the facts, oh like, more tax cuts to the top 1%, will somehow make their life better, sad really.

    April 24, 2014 07:19 am at 7:19 am |