by Daniel Gray ’18
Hillary Rodham Clinton. Just mentioning her name elicits a variety of responses ranging from excitement to distrust—and for some, even deep disgust. Many people continue to have questions about her trustworthiness and honesty. I, for one, am not exempt from having some serious questions with regards to her email scandal.
Why then am I voting for Hillary Clinton on Nov. 8?
I am voting for her because of her character and her policy, both of which are completely and utterly bankrupt in Donald Trump.
I would like to focus mainly around the first point. The true judge of a person’s character is how they behaved before they were in the spotlight. Hillary attended Yale Law School and was one of only 27 women in her graduating class. Immediately after graduating, she turned down several high paying jobs to work in New Bedford, Massachusetts, going door-to-door collecting stories about the educational experiences of children with disabilities.
A few years later, she moved to Arkansas with her husband Bill Clinton and founded the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families. Her commitment to fighting for the rights of children continued into the years of her service in government. Hillary was instrumental in passing the Adoption and Safe Families Act, legislation that encouraged the adoption of children with special needs.
She was also instrumental in passing the Children’s Health Insurance Program, a program that expanded healthcare access to over 8 million children across the country. Hillary has dedicated her career to helping improve the lives of women and children.
In 2000, Hillary became the first female senator from New York, and in 2006 she was reelected with an even larger margin of the votes (67%). In 2009, a Republican Senate confirmed her in a 94-2 vote, and when she exited in 2012, she left with a 66% approval rating. This was a near record setting high.
Not only has Hillary consistently fought for the rights of women and children, she has also worked across the aisle with Republicans to pass a variety of bills from relief aid for 9/11 survivors to tough sanctions on Iran.
Hillary has gone toe-to-toe with Russia, brokering a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, averting a potential war. She has traveled all over the world championing LGBTQ rights and worked with UN Security Council to pass a resolution combating sexual violence against women and children.
In short, Hillary has been a powerful fighter for change her entire career, and she has made it her life’s work to fight for those who do not have a voice. Her journey has been long, and she has made many mistakes. Some of which still haunt her today–such as her missing emails and the Clinton Foundation. It would be unfair not to consider the baggage that she carries with her, and to some that is why they will not be voting for her.
It is important, however, to remember the scope of her career and understand that no one is immune from mistakes, not Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. On Nov. 8, I will not be voting for a perfect candidate or a candidate whose policies I align with perfectly. I will be voting for someone who genuinely cares about the rights of women and children, and who understands that we are truly stronger together.