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Unfinished Business: The Essential Hillary Clinton. Aired 8-10p ET

Aired September 5, 2016 - 20:00   ET


[20:00:00] ANNOUNCER: The following is a special CNN report.


CHELSEA CLINTON, DAUGHTER OF HILLARY CLINTON: This is the story of my mother, Hillary Clinton.

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The most famous woman in the world, and perhaps the most controversial.

CHELSEA CLINTON: I don't remember a time when my mom wasn't being attacked.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: What difference at this point does it make?

DAVID AXELROD, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think there is a lot of scar tissue from the battles that she's fought.

BROWN: From first lady --

H. CLINTON: Human rights are women's rights and women's rights are human rights.

BROWN: To senator --

H. CLINTON: Seeing it shows what a total hell it is.

BROWN: To madam secretary, making headlines --

REPORTER: Will you explain the e-mails, Secretary Clinton?

BROWN: And making history.

H. CLINTON: I accept your nomination for president of the United States.

REP. PETER KING (R), NEW YORK: She's not the great heroin that her supporters think she is. And she's not that evil person that her enemies think.

BROWN (on camera): There are so many versions of you out there.


BROWN: But did you ever see a version and say, who is that person?

H. CLINTON: Oh, all the time.

BROWN (voice-over): Who is the real Hillary Clinton?

A CNN special report, "Unfinished Business: The Essential Hillary Clinton".

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hillary Clinton sale, folks.

BROWN: In June of 2008, after a year and a half long campaign hundreds of Hillary Clinton's friends and supporters gathered in the nation's capital.

BETSY EBELING, CHILDHOOD FRIEND: It was like running seven/eighths of the race. You could see that finish line and you knew you weren't going to cross it. And it was surprisingly emotional for all of us.

BROWN: The woman who many hoped would make history as the country's first female president had fallen short.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She was surrounded by her daughter. On the other side of her was her mother.

H. CLINTON: Well, this isn't exactly the party I planned but I sure like the company.


CHELSEA CLINTON: I did feel as if I was standing there at another step in history, because my grandmother was born before women had the right to vote, and she lived long enough to vote for her daughter for president. That to me is an amazing American ark.

H. CLINTON: Although we weren't able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it's got about 18 million cracks in it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think that Hillary Clinton is a fighter, first and foremost. We knew that this was not going to be the last chapter.

H. CLINTON: Always aim high, work hard and care deeply about what you believe in. When you stumble, keep faith and when you're knocked down, get right back up and never listen to anyone who says you can't or shouldn't go on.

BROWN: These are the lessons that have guided Hillary Clinton throughout her life, lessons she first learned as a young girl from her mother, Dorothy.

H. CLINTON: I did not know how hard her childhood had been until I was a teenager. When I was growing up, she was just my mom.

BROWN: Abandoned by her own parents as a young girl, Dorothy Rodham survived a harrowing childhood, marred by neglect.

H. CLINTON: As I learned more about what she went through, it was very humbling because I often wondered, how would I be able to cope with being abandoned and reject bid my parents, my grandparents, not being able to go to college? I mean, all of the struggles that she had.

But out of that she pieced together what she wanted do as a mother. I was the beneficiary of that. She was an absolutely fabulous mother.

BROWN (on camera): So, this is where Hillary Rodham grew up?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is where we grew up. Park Ridge, Illinois, salt of the earth, a town that took a great deal of pride in its middle class values.

BROWN (voice-over): The conservative nearly all white is where he and Dorothy Rodham would raise all three of their children.

Ernie Ricketts was a neighborhood friend.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On this corner, we would play baseball and the manhole covers were the bases.

[19:35:01] BROWN: In addition to baseball, they say Hillary loved a good debate.

EBELING: Hill's dad, he loved nothing better than to throw out a topic where he would go no way. I think we all learned to debate from sitting around their dinner table.

BROWN: But according to biographer Carl Bernstein, Hugh Rodman was know to turn family dinner table debates into something much less palatable.

CARL BERNSTEIN, BIOGRAPHER: He would go around and call on Hillary and call on Hillary's brothers and then Dorothy Rodham, Hillary's mother, would try to express herself and he would say what the hell do you know, Miss Fancy Pants? He was kind of vicious and disdainful.

BROWN (on camera): How tough was he as a father?

H. CLINTON: He was tough. He was a man of his time. He had been a chief petty officer in World War II, training thousands of young sailors to go off mostly to the Pacific. My dad was very old fashioned. If I bring home a good report card he would say oh, you must go to an easy school. He was always trying to push me further than I might go.

BROWN (voice-over): Her mother taught her no matter what was standing in he way she could always push through.

BERNSTEIN: One day she took a carpenter's level. While all held can be breaking lose around you when you're like this and like that, what you want to do is come back to center.

BROWN: Part of finding that center was religion.

EBELING: Her faith and prayer were a foundation she could always return to. And it has served her very well at difficult times in her life.

BROWN: Dorothy was a Sunday schoolteacher at United Methodist Church, where Hillary would cultivate meet her mentor, youth minister Don Jones.

BERNSTEIN: Not only did he preach the Gospels of Christ, he also came with Bob Dylan records and most significantly, he took them downtown in Chicago to hear Martin Luther King speak.

BROWN: Meeting Dr. King was transformative for Hillary who had rarely made it outside the confines of Park Ridge.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here is a white kid growing up in an all white suburb who actually gets a chance to hear one of the leaders of the civil rights movement and then shake hands with him. What just an unbelievable experience.

BROWN: An experience that would also mark the beginning of Hillary's political evolution.

EBELING: She and I were Goldwater girls together in Park Ridge and set up the Republican headquarters for Gold Water. And then, we went away to college.

BROWN: In the fall of 1965, Hillary arrived at Wellesley College, an elite all women school outside Boston.

BERNSTEIN: It was a huge change, because suddenly, she was at Wellesley, and Hillary's upbringing had been very sheltered compared to these girls.

BROWN: When Janet Hill (ph) arrived at Wellesley that same fall, she too felt fished out of water, and quickly bonded with Hillary.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I found her to be friendly and easy to get along with.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When Hillary was at Wellesley College, she was very popular. And it was popularity that results from exercising leadership and being successful at exercising leadership.

BROWN: Allen Schecter (ph) was Hillary's political science professor and faculty adviser.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She was very interested in these major issues of the her, which were issues of race, gender, poverty.

BROWN: Issues that would push Hillary to abandon her Republican roots and begin leading the way for change.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She was no doubt the leader of not just the senior class but the entire college. BROWN: It was that which lead her classmates insist that Hillary be

their voice at graduation.

BERNSTEIN: There was no tradition of a student speaker at Wellesley, but the student body insisted that there'd be one and they chose Hillary.

BROWN: She was scheduled to speak at the commencement after the invited guest, Republican Senator Edgar Brooke of Massachusetts.

BERNSTEIN: And he gave a speech that was dismissive and patronizing, about the anti war movement, about what students were going through in the country.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There was polite applause but mostly from our parents. Then Hillary spoke.

And it is a great pleasure to present to this audience Miss Hillary Rodham.

She got up and discarded her prepared and vetted remarks and spoke extemporaneously.

[20:10:03] HILLARY CLINTON'S SPEECH: We've had lots of empathy. We've had lots of sympathy. But we feel that for too long, our leaders have viewed politics as the art of the possible, and the challenge now is to practice politics as the art of making what appears to be impossible, possible.

BROWN: While the administration was stricken by Hillary's rebuttal, the students erupted in applause.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'll tell you what, we were ecstatic. We gave her a standing ovation. We were so proud of her.

BROWN: The following week, Hillary Rodham made national headlines for the very first time.

BERNSTEIN: It got tremendous attention. "Life Magazine" did a story on her and her political future.

BROWN: And her future appeared wide open.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Someone put a piece of paper in the dorm. They predicted I would marry a football player. The only thing written about Hillary was that she would be the first female president of the United States, 1969.

BROWN: Up next --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She said, bill asked me to marry him again, but I'm afraid if I say no, he will never ask me again.



[20:15:07] BROWN (voice-over): From the Vietnam War to Woodstock, as the '60s ended, the world was in transition.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The '60s and the war had -- and, the civil rights had changed lots of people, absolutely.

BROWN: Including recent Wellesley graduate Hillary Rodham who had just enrolled at Yale Law School and quickly caught the attention of classmates like Nancy Bekavac.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She had big glasses. She wore bell bottom blue jeans and work shirts. The thing that was most different about her was this focus on children. While the rest of us wandered around, taking various kinds of classes, she was focused on women and children, children's welfare from the first. She never deviated from that at all, ever.

BROWN: Perhaps the only thing that would break Hillary's focus during her time at Yale was the adoring gaze of one promising young law student, a strapping, smooth talking Rhodes Scholar from the great state of Arkansas.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was tall, 6'2", 6'3". And he had this huge head of frizzy reddish hair. And he had an accent.

BROWN: Did he make his political ambitions known?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Absolutely. When I first met him, I remember he had been at law school maybe two or three days, and we went through the line in the lunchroom, and he knew the names of everyone at the lunch room. He knew all the servers, called them by name.

BROWN: But it wasn't until the spring of 1971 in the Yale library that Bill Clinton would learn the name of the young woman who would change everything.

Years later, Hillary recounted the exact moment.

H. CLINTON: I put my books down and I went up and I said, you know, if you're going to keep looking at me and I'm going to keep looking at you, we ought to at least know each other's name. I said, I'm Hillary Rodham, who are you? He said that he couldn't remember his name. That makes me feel so good when he says that.

BROWN (on camera): So, what were they like together?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yin and yang. I think he saw in her a great partner, somebody who is smart, who was driven, who was utterly disciplined and persistent. I think she saw in him someone who is exciting and emotional. And since they both cared about public policy, it was a terrific combination.

BROWN (voice-over): A combination so special that soon Bill would ask Hillary for her hand in marriage for the first time. (on camera): What was holding you back initially when Bill Clinton

was asking you to marry him?

H. CLINTON: I just hadn't thought about getting married. I was clearly in love but I just wasn't quite ready to commit to marriage. And I also didn't know what I wanted to do.

It was very clear what Bill wanted to do. He wanted to go into politics. And I thought, well, before I get married I should know what I want to do. So, I said no that first time. And then he came back and asked me again. I said, no, I'm still not ready.

BROWN (voice-over): So instead of tying the knot and moving to Arkansas, where Hillary was forging his political career, Hillary followed her passion to Massachusetts and went to work for her mentor, Marian Wright Edelman at the Children's Defense Fund.

H. CLINTON: My work with the Children's Defense Fund showed me how much we need to do to help kids, abused and neglected kids, kids and adult in jails, kids with lousy schools, all kinds of problems.

So, I was fixated on what we could do as advocates to make changes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everything she did, she did very well. I trusted her to send her out to do any bit of research, whether it was basic research or whether it was to go onto the field. Hillary was always a star.

BROWN: But soon another opportunity immerged that gave Hillary a front row seat to history.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What did the president know and when did he know it?

BROWN: In 1974, Hillary moved to Washington, D.C., to work on the investigation into President Nixon's impeachment and called her friend Sarah Ehrman looking for a place to stay.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So she moved in with all of her junk, and Hillary and I really became sort of like roommates, you know?

BROWN (on camera): Was she a good roommate?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, she doesn't appreciate my telling this story but I'll tell it anyway. She never made her bed and that really got me.

BROWN: Did you ever tell her, will you make your head?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think I once said that, Hillary, for crying out loud, make your bed.

BROWN: And did she start making her bed?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. She never made her bed.

BROWN (voice-over): She may not have made her bed, but Hillary certainly made a name for herself in Washington.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She earned the respect of every attorney and staff members that was on that committee. As well as the House Judiciary Committee members.

[20:20:01] BROWN: Terry Kirkpatrick (ph) was also an attorney working on the investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And we worked hard. We worked seven days a week, 12 to 16 hours a day until the president resigned.

RICHARD NIXON, FORMER PRESIDENT: I shall resign the presidency effective at noon tomorrow.

BROWN: That same week, Hillary had an announcement of her own.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She said, I'm going to move to Fayetteville, Arkansas. I said, why? She said, I want to be with my boyfriend. That was Bill Clinton. But he was from Arkansas.

I said to her, you're not going to move down there.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was stunned and I did not know anything about him. I obviously was kind of, who is he, you know, in Arkansas?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I said, you've got the world in front of you now. You can go work on the Hill. You can do anything you want. And she said, "I love him and I want to be with him", and there's no arguing that.

BROWN: That wasn't going to stop Sarah from trying. So, she devised a plan to drive Hillary from Washington, D.C. to Fayetteville, all the while trying to go convince her to change her mind.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And all the way down, Sarah would stop every 20 miles and say for, God's sake, do you know what you're doing? You're throwing your future away, why are you doing this? And she would say, "But I love him and I want to be with him." So we drove and we drove.

BROWN: After two and a half days of meandering through the South, Sarah's strategy had failed. Hillary had arrived in Arkansas.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was the beginning of the life that she wanted. And when she hugged me good-bye, I thought I will never see her again.

And the next day, I went to watch Bill Clinton running for Congress. He stood up on a tree stump and he talked.

BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT: We are on the verge of a great economic prosperity boom in our state.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And that's when I knew she was right.

BILL CLINTON: We need a government that cares more about helping small farmers and consumers than placing the big grain companies and big oil companies and foreign friends.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was brilliant. He was charming. He was articulate. He was down home. He was himself. He was amazing.

BROWN: Clinton asked his friend Margaret Whillock to make sure Hillary felt right at home.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And right before she came he called me and said, don't forget, she is coming. She is coming. I want you to call her. I said, OK. OK. I will. I will.

I did call her the second day she was at the law school and that's when I met her.

BROWN: Hillary had accepted a position to teach at the University of Arkansas Law School, and to expand the school's legal aid clinic. But while Hillary was starting her new caeer, Bill was busy running his first campaign.

H. CLINTON: I had never known anybody in politics before. And so, I was a little bit hesitant to be thrust into that, but it was his dream. I wanted to support him, but I also wanted to be sure that I was continuing my work as well.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean she was so smart and she was so good.

BROWN: Jim Blare (ph) and his then-girlfriend Diane bonded with Hillary almost immediately.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You would be very surprised to know that an awful lot of times politics was discussed. They loved talking politics.

BROWN: But in the fall of 1974, the only politics they were talking was Bill Clinton's run for Congress.

Though Bill Clinton lost that race, a year later, he'd take one last shot at something else he had been fight for.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She said Bill asked me to marry him again. I want to marry him. I want to spend the rest of my life with him, but I don want get married right now, but I'm afraid that by saying no, he will never ask me again. And my advice to her, which may not have been the best advice anybody ever gave her, was to say yes.

BROWN: In a small ceremony in their Fayetteville home on October 11th, 1975, Hillary and Bill would say I do.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bill saw the smartest woman he had ever seen, a woman that could read his mind, a woman that understood him down to the core. She saw somebody that could make her laugh no matter how bad things got.

BROWN: But Hillary would have no way of knowing just how bad things could get.

Coming up -- GENNIFER FLOWERS: Yes, I was Bill Clinton's lover for 12 years.




BILL CLINTON: This is a victory for the future of Arkansas.

BROWN (voice-over): 1978, Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham officially entered the national political stage.

BERNSTEIN: Bill was elected as the youngest governor in the country and now Hillary's star is hitched to build. You now have, quote, "the journey".

H. CLINTON: There is still a lot to learn and a lot to be done.

BROWN: Right off the bat, it was clear, that journey was going to be a bumpy ride.

[20:30:07] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does it concern you that maybe other people feel that you don't fit the image that we have created for the governor's wife in Arkansas?

H. CLINTON: No. Because just as I said before, I think that each person should be assessed and judged on, you know, that person's own merits.

BROWN: But for Hillary, it wasn't going to be that simple.


BROWN: A big job, the first female partner at Little Rocks renowned Rose Law Firm.

WHILLOCK: I can't think of any other governor's wife up to that time, who had actually had an 8:00 to 5:00 kind of job.

BROWN: But what Hillary didn't have was her husband's last name.

WHILLOCK: That name thing is what got everybody and people talked about that forever.

ANN MCCOY, GOVERNOR'S MANSION ADMINISTRATOR: They simply thought that she should take his name.

BROWN: Ann McCoy would get to know that first lady while working as a governor's mansion administrator.

MCCOY: She was really surprised at the upheaval about her name.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's one of the reasons that he might have lost the governor ship after one term. BROWN: After only two years in office voters kicked Bill Clinton out of the governor's mansion and a stunning defeat.

BILL CLINTON, 42ND PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I regret that I will not have two more years to serve as governor.

WHILLOCK: Bill Clinton raised the price of their car tax for their license plate and evidently that made people furious.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bill Clinton looses the election and goes into a total depression.

BROWN: A heartbreaking end to a year that began with pure joy. Back in February, Hillary had given birth to their little girl, Chelsea Victoria Clinton.

B. CLINTON: The next two years are very important for our child's development, you know, they are really pivotal years, and I'm grateful that I'm going to be able to spend some more time with her.

BROWN: More time with their daughter and more time to figure out where to go from here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hillary decides that the only way to restore and have their life is if she can bring him back. So what does she do? She takes over.

BROWN: Hillary constructed a political come back plan. Step one, Bill's apology tour.

B. CLINTON: You bet I'm asking for a second chance and I'm proud of it. I've asked Hillary for a second chance more times that I can't remember.

BROWN: Step two, Hillary's new name.

H. CLINTON: So, I'm thinking of perhaps changing my name.

MCCOY: She said, well I love my name but if that's something that makes a difference with the people of Arkansas I'll change my name.

WHILLOCK: She became Mrs. Clinton and she changed her looks and she started taking more of an interest in clothing.

MCCOY: And of course she cut her hair. It was like oh, now we have a first lady.

BROWN: And just like that the Clintons were back.

B. CLINTON: I think what I'm supposed to say is it appears we have won the election.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She did everything and organized everything to make that happen.

BROWN: Bill Clinton would win back the governor's mansion in 1982 and three more times after that. It's where the Clinton family would live for the next decade.

B. CLINTON: She was a magnificent first lady of this state and she will be again.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I thought he was smart. I thought she was smarter.

BROWN: Skip Rutherford was working for Arkansas Senator David Pryor when Bill Clinton returned to office.

SKIP RUTHERFORD, DIRECTOR OF SENATOR PRYOR: Probably the toughest policy initiative that Bill Clinton faced as governor was in education. He tapped Hillary to lead that effort.

H. CLINTON: We want to be sure that our children get the best possible education.

RUTHERFORD: Hillary took on some very tough issues. When you go into small town Arkansas and say, it's important that you teach foreign language. It's important that you have an updated chemistry lab. And by the way we're going to have to pay for it as a state, that creates some criticism.

H. CLINTON: There are a large numbers of children who are ripped off, that a rather early age.

RUTHERFORD: Ultimately what she got done was that Arkansas adopted a whole set of higher education standards.

BROWN: Higher education standards meant higher expectations for children across the state, just like the expectations they had for Chelsea at home.

MCCOY: They treated Chelsea almost as an equal. I mean she was in on all of the conversations that they had. And I think that's why she is so smart, number one and interested in everything.

CHELSEA CLINTON, HILLARY CLINTON'S DAUGHTER: I played softball in our local kind of press (ph) league and I, you know, took ballet and piano and it's ...

BROWN: But no matter what Chelsea was into, both of her parents were always cheering her on.

[20:34:56] C. CLINTON: I think my dad was more the embarrassing one. I mean I like walk on the field, and I was like yes, having done with the yes, dad. So my mom would cheer with just as much enthusiasm but probably more appropriate intervals.

BROWN: Rutherford, spend many evenings with the first lady, cheering on their daughters from the softball stands. But in the summer of 1991 Clinton had something else on her mind.

RUTHERFORD: We started talking about presidential politics. And I was demoting (ph) effect and saying well, I don't think the Democrats have a chance in 1992. There is just absolutely no way. I rare she looked over at me and said what the Democrats need is the right message and the right messenger.

BROWN: October 3rd, 1991 on the steps of Little Rock's state capita capitol ...

B. CLINTON: Today, I am proudly announced my candidacy for president of the United States of America.

BROWN: A candidacy that many said would amount to a test on quickly picked up steam.

H. CLINTON: What we think stands at the end of it is a real opportunity to change the country.

PATTI SOLIS DOYLE, CLINTON CAMPAIGN STAFF: I felt like oh, my god, she is such a powerful person. She should be running for president.

BROWN: Patti Solis Doyle was the first person to join Hillary Clinton's staff during the '92 campaign.

DOYLE: Whenever there was a strategy meeting she was at the table. She was the only woman at the table.

BROWN: And does she hold around at the table?

DOYLE: Oh my god, she ran the table. She ran the table with her husband.

H. CLINTON: My husband, Bill Clinton.

B. CLINTON: Ladies and gentlemen, you have just heard a stunning illustration of my real campaign slogan, buy one get one free.

REP. PETER KING, (D) NEW YORK: She was the first spouse of a candidate to play an active issue role. People weren't ready for that, she was controversial.

H. CLINTON: I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies at Tennessee, but what I decided to do is to fulfill my profession which I enter before my husband with this public life.

BROWN: When you heard to her say that, what was your reaction or you're thinking uh-oh we might have a problem here?

DOYLE: That's exactly that's what I was thinking, uh-oh.

BROWN: But tea and cookies was a walk in the park compare today the bomb shell allegation a month earlier that rocked Bill Clinton's campaign and his marriage.

GENNIFER FLOWERS, AMERICAN MODEL: Yes, I was Bill Clinton's lover for 12 years.

BROWN: January 27th, 1992, a former nightclub singer Gennifer Flowers came forward and a nationally televised news conference.

FLOWERS: The truth is I loved him. CARL BERNSTEIN, HILLARY CLINTON BIOGRAPHER: It looked like the campaign was going down and they had to do something.

H. CLINTON: I think it's real dangerous in this country if we don't have some zone of privacy for everybody.

BROWN: Just weeks before the New Hampshire primary on Super Bowl Sunday Hillary Clinton appeared on CBS' 60 minutes alongside her husband.

H. CLINTON: You know, I'm not sitting here some little woman standing by my man like Tammy Wynette. I'm sitting here because love him and I respect him and I honor what he has been through and what we've been through together. And, you know, if that's not enough for people then heck, don't vote for him.

DOYLE: She called me right after it and asked my opinion on how I thought it went. And I said I thought you were strong and forceful and committed to your husband and your family. So I thought it went great.

BROWN: Weeks later Hillary was by her husband's side again when his strong second place finish in the New Hampshire primary jolted his primary back to life.

B. CLINTON: New Hampshire tonight has made Bill Clinton the come back kid.

BROWN: Bill Clinton went onto win his party's nomination and that fall the White House.

DOYLE: I think if it weren't for Hillary, Bill Clinton would not have been president for sure.

B. CLINTON: So help me, God.

BROWN: Up next.

DOYLE: The fact that Hillary had an office in the west wing was a big deal and ruffled a lot of feathers.


[20:43:13] B. CLINTON: But I will faithfully execute the office of president of the United States.

BROWN: January 20th, 1993, Bill Clinton's inauguration filled with ceremony and tradition. Inaugural balls and celebrations, even a saxophone playing president.

Bill Clinton joined the band at nearly all 11 balls with his wife by his side.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: God bless Bill and Hillary.

BROWN: And when they returned to their new home, the White House, the party continued.

What was it like the first night?

JIM BLAIRE, BILL CLINTON'S FRIEND: Well it was eerie because all of Bush's items had been taken away and the Clinton's items hadn't been unpacked.

BROWN: Close friend, Jim Blare and his wife Diane, and a couple of other friends were there.

BLAIRE: Bill Clinton wanted to play cards so we found a card table somewhere and drag it out.

BORWN: Did Hillary play?

BLAIRE: She did not play. She is too smart to get caught up in those games.

BROWN: It didn't take long for Clintons to settle in and from day one it was apparent they would do things differently.

DOYLE: The fact that Hillary had an office in the west wing was a big deal.

BROWN: Patti Solis Doyle was Hillary's senior adviser.

DOYLE: Traditionally first ladies have their offices in the east wing, and so the idea that this first lady would have an office not, you know, next to the Oval but in the same wing of the White House, that ruffled a lot of feathers.

We were very up front about what her role was going to be as first lady. She is going to be an adviser to her husband.

[20:45:02] BROWN: Hillary Clinton wanted to focus on policy, not parties. Lisa Caputo was the first lady's press secretary.

LISA CAPUTO, HILLARY CLINTON'S PRESS SECRETARY: No one was even thinking about hosting state dinners or movie screenings and inviting members of the Washington establishment. They were about getting things done.

BLAIR: She got off on the wrong foot with the Arbiters of D.C. Society, and she could never get back on the balance beam.

BROWN: Unfortunately those were relationships she would soon need barely a week after the inauguration.

B. CLINTON: Today I am announcing the formation of the president's task force on national health reform. This task force will be chaired by the first lady.

DOYLE: He saw what she had done in terms of education reform in the state of Arkansas and he, better than anyone, knew how brilliant she was. B. CLINTON: I think that in the coming months the American people will learn as the people of our state did, that we have a first lady of many talents but who most of all can bring people together around conflicts endemic issues to hammer out consensus and get things done.

H. CLINTON: What we are trying to do.

BROWN: She traveled across the country learning about the health care problems that faced patients, doctors and nurses. But when she returned to Washington she retreated with a tight circle of trusted advisers to privately draft the legislation.

BERNSTEIN: Her management in health care is really clumsy. Her secrecy, her combativeness, her insistence on my way or the highway.

BROWN: Critics say she was far from the inclusive concisus build that her husband have promised.

Republican Congressman Peter King.

KING: Having this secret team of experts and was very secretive arrogant plan coming, is going to be imposed on the American people.

BROWN: As her public battle for health care intensified a personal medical crisis surfaced in Arkansas.

H. CLINTON: My father had a massive stroke and I immediately flew to Little Rock and was by his bedside.

BROWN: Less than three months after she arrived at the White House, Hillary's father, Hugh Rodham died.

H. CLINTON: It was, you know, just a terrible loss.

CAPUTO: He was very demanding of his kids. And I think Hillary gets a lot of her tenacity and her determination from her father.

BROWN: Tenacity and determination she would need five months later for her marathon health care ceremony before five sub committees on The Hill.

H. CLINTON: First of all, there is no free lunch in this health care plan. It is not going to be free, everybody is going to be paying something, even people who are on Medicaid now will be paying something if they work unlike today. And we think that as a big step forward for responsibility.

CAPUTO: The dish (ph) as were surprised. I mean it was a tour to force. It just was incredibly substantive, direct.

BROWN: Republicans saw it quite differently.

KING: I don't think it swayed the average person in the street. If it doesn't sway the average person on the street, it's not going to sway the politicians who have to vote on it. BROWN: And in fact it didn't. Congress never put the healthcare reform plan to a vote. A significant defeat for the Clintons, especially Hillary. And that was far from their only issue.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you going to answer questions on Whitewater today?

BROWN: As part of a larger investigation federal officials were looking into a failed business venture in Arkansas in which the Clintons were investment partners known as Whitewater, for the real estate deal that was part of a federal probe.

It sparked mistrust of the first couple, especially when missing Billing records from Hillary Clinton's Arkansas law firm were suddenly found in the White House residence. She was called to testify, the first time a first lady had been subpoenaed to appear before a grand jury.

CAPUTO: Nothing was going to throw her and if they want to bring her before the federal courthouse to testify, by God, she is going to do it. I remember her saying, that's what they want, i will walk in with my head held high.

H. CLINTON: I was glad to have the opportunity to tell the grand jury what I have been telling all of you. I do not know how the billing records came to be found where they were found.


BROWN: Build their investment partners, Jim and Susan McDougal were both convicted as part of the larger case, the Clintons where never charge with any wrongdoing involving Whitewater.

[20:50:05] But it would become one of several scandals that would mar Bill Clinton's presidency.

CAPUTO: It was a dark time, you know, the feelings of humiliation and vulnerability.

BROWN: While the Clintons weather the scandals, many Democrats did not. Midterm November 8th, 1994.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Republicans will take more than enough seats to take control of the House of Representatives for the first time in 40 years.

B. CLINTON: And since I'm the president, I have to take some responsibility for that.

DOYLE: She felt terrible. She felt guilty. She felt it was her fault.

BROWN: There were some tough times in the White House. Your failed health care initiative, the Whitewater investigation, the impeachment proceedings. Looking back, what was the hardest moment for you in the White House? H. CLINTON: When my father died and when Bill's mother died in the same year. The tragedies that make a big hole in your heart because you lose somebody that you know, you care about, a family member, those were the hardest. The others, of course, had their difficulties as well, but it was the loss of my dad and my mother-in-law that were really tough.

BROWN: So Hillary Clinton went back to her roots advocating for children, women and veterans. She became an ambassador of sorts for her husband. It was September 1995.

MELANNE VERVEER, FORMER CHIEF OF STAFF OF H. CLINTON: No one had any idea what she was going to say.

BROWN: Hillary Clinton traveled with her chief of staff Melanne Verveer to China for the United Nations Conference on women.

VERVEER: There were expectations that she probably would tread lightly and not say a whole lot that was news-making.

BROWN: But those expectations were wrong.

H. CLINTON: We are the primary care takers for most of the world's children and elderly, yet much of the work we do is not valued, not by economists.

VERVEER: This vast room filled with hundreds of hundreds of people, began to awaken as though the sun had come up in the morning and with each utterance got more and more excited.

H. CLINTON: Let it be that human rights are women's rights and women's rights are human rights once and for all.

VERVEER: She realized that she had a role to play that could make a difference, not just at home, as important as that is, but around the world.

BROWN: Hillary Clinton had orchestrated her own comeback. Until an unexpected revelation ...

B. CLINTON: I did not have ...

BROWN: ... that almost ended it all.

DOYLE: She was devastated by it. She felt betrayed.


[20:57:05] BROWN: Spring, 1997. Tanzania. One of the 82 countries Hillary Clinton visited as first lady. With her, 15-year-old Chelsea.

C. CLINTON: We have a big problem with people not thinking they have a future. Women, young women and young men were very cynical about their future.

BROWN: Chelsea was no longer a little girl. She had grown up and like her mother, had her own opinions and her own voice.

C. CLINTON: They shared these magnificent and almost life-changing experiences together.

BROWN: Experiences that Hillary Clinton made sure were balanced with a healthy dose of normalcy.

C. CLINTON: Well, growing up in the White House, I think was really both extraordinary and pretty ordinary. It was extraordinary because it was the White House. It was also pretty ordinary. Most of the time we had dinner together every night. It was one of the benefits of, you know, what my dad calls living above the store.

H. CLINTON: We just made it more like a real home and her friends were always welcome. We had lots of kids in the White House all the time.

C. CLINTON: Amazing memories of being kind of 12, 13, playing hide- and-seek, like so much fun. And that my parents were just like always don't break anything. But otherwise, like go forth and play hide-and- seek.

H. CLINTON: Well this is the green room and it's one of my favorites.

BROWN: If something did break or there was a mess, Hillary made sure Chelsea cleaned it up.

VERVEER: The kids were watching a movie and Hillary went down when it concluded and discovered there was popcorn all or the theater, and she said to them you are not leaving here until you pick up every kernel of that popcorn.

BROWN: From the beginning, the Clintons asked the press to steer clear of Chelsea.

CAPUTO: She and President Clinton were adamant about maintaining a zone of privacy around Chelsea. Hillary had spent a lot of time talking to Jackie Kennedy Onassis about that, about how to raise young children in the White House.

BROWN: And how to raise a teenager. Imagine having your date pick you up at the White House and your father is the president.

C. CLINTON: My father would intimidate them as I think any father. Oh just, you know, kind of quite sternly standing there on top of the stairs as they kind of just walk out and sheepish they say like, you know, I'm here to take your daughter to dinner or a movie or whatever we were doing. I think he loved that intimidation factor.

BROWN: What about your mom? What was she like when you would bring boys home?

[21:00:00] C. CLINTON: Well she already knew all about them. You know, I'm so close to my mom that she kind of already asks me, even grilled me, kind of anything and everything she felt she needs to know. H. CLINTON: I remember one boy she brought, and he was going through that stage where he was wearing a baseball cap the whole time. And I finally told him you have to take off your baseball cap. You're in the White House and we're going to have dinner and you cannot sit at the table with your baseball cap on. So it was just thing a regular mom.

BROWN: Another regular mom moment? When Chelsea graduated from high school and left the nest. Fall, 1997.

PATTI SOLIS DOYLE, FORMER ADVISOR TO HILLARY CLINTON: She was teary, almost every day, that her child was going away to college.

C. CLINTON: My mom just I think couldn't believe that I was going to California. I mean, I think that was more upsetting to her than just thinking of me going to college. She's like can't you find somewhere closer?

BROWN: Chelsea arrived at Stanford on Air Force One. Was welcomed by fans and friends. She had a Secret Service detail but Hillary still tried to make it as normal as possible.

C. CLINTON: My mom put contact paper in every drawer. Like she kept like trying to find things to reorganize and finally my dad was like we need to go. My mom was like there has to be something else. My dad was like it's now time. I think if my dad hadn't intervened my mom would have like still been there when I graduated four years later.

BROWN: Chelsea was an adult now on her own. Shielding her from controversy as Hillary had done for 18 years would be much harder.

How difficult is it for you to hear so many people harshly criticize your mother?

C. CLINTON: Well, candidly, it's just been something I've gotten accustomed to over my life. You know, I don't remember a time when my mom wasn't being attack.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Charges of sex, lies and audiotapes.

BILL CLINTON, 42ND U.S. PRESIDENT: There is not a sexual relationship. That is accurate.

BROWN: January, 1998. Halfway through Chelsea's freshman year. News broke that Bill Clinton had an affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sources say the tapes include Lewinsky's graphic descriptions of a long-term sexual relationship.

BROWN: He denied it.

B. CLINTON: I want you to listen to me. I'm going to say this again. I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky.

BROWN: And as she had done so many times before, Hillary stood by her husband.

DOYLE: She immediately said well, it's just not true, Patti. And so she felt get out there, get ahead of this, deny it and say that, you know, we're not going to let this affect your job.

BROWN: She kept her commitment to a previously scheduled appearance on the "Today" show.

MATT LAUER, "TODAY" SHOW HOST: What is the exact nature of the relationship between your husband and Monica Lewinsky?

BROWN: It wasn't going to be easy.

H. CLINTON: This vast right wing conspiracy that has been conspiring against my husband.

DOYLE: That's what she believed, this was another attempt to bring down her husband and attack them.

BROWN: Meanwhile, Federal investigators and a grand jury looked into the allegations of perjury and obstruction of justice. By midsummer, Monica Lewinsky agreed to testify and supply evidence in exchange for immunity. The President was scheduled to testify as well. It was the middle of August in the early morning hours before he was to be deposed when Bill Clinton confessed.

DOYLE: He let her know that was actually true, and she was devastated by it. She was -- she felt betrayed. She felt lied to. She felt that she had been defending him all this time and unknowingly, she was lying.

B. CLINTON: Indeed I did have a relationship with Ms. Lewinsky that was not appropriate. In fact, it was wrong.

NANCY BEKAVAC, LAW SCHOOL FRIEND: I don't know what got her through there, but being in the White House, subject to all that scrutiny.

BROWN: Hillary was desperate to the escape Washington, D.C. But morning after admitting the affair, Bill Clinton and his family left to go on vacation. The world was watching.

DOYLE: You know, she was angry. She was upset.

[21:05:02] It's an iconic photograph with Chelsea in the middle and I think at that point, that's who was keeping them together.

BROWN: Chelsea.

DOYLE: Chelsea.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's the President's birthday.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The President and First Lady have shown little affection.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Following the grand jury testimony. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a family that's got healing to do.

BROWN: How difficult was it to go through something so private, so personal, under the glare of the spotlight as the first lady?

H. CLINTON: It was really hard. It was painful. And I was so supported by my friends. My friends just rallied around. They would come, they would try to make me laugh, they would recommend books to read. We would go for long walks. We would hang out, you know, eat bad food. I mean just the kind of things you do with your friends.

And it was something that you just had to get up every day and try to deal with while still carrying on a public set of responsibilities. So it was very, very challenging.

BROWN: Hillary Clinton took care of daughter and stood by her husband, even when others didn't. Hillary confided in Jim Blair's wife, Diane.

BROWN: And she explains to Diane why she was sticking by her husband during this time. She said she's in it for the long haul, partly because she's stubborn, partly her upbringing, partly her pride.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think there's only one real reason and that's because she loves him. That's the end of the day.

BROWN: Simple as that?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Simple as that.

MARK PENN, CLINTON POLLSTER: Hillary Clinton during this period I think rises really to the status of most admired women.

BROWN: Clinton pollster Mark Penn.

PENN: People look at this and they said well, look, anybody that could go through this, I mean, that's a strong woman.

BROWN: An image she'd carry into her next stage in life. As the first lady becomes a senator.


[21:11:32] JOHN MCLAUGHLIN, U.S. ASSOCIATE JUSTICE: William Jefferson Clinton, by such conduct, warrants impeachment and trial.

Senators, how say you? Is the respondent, William Jefferson Clinton, guilty or not guilty?

BROWN: As Bill Clinton was fighting for his political legacy, Hillary Clinton was planning hers. It was February 12, 1999.

DOYLE: It was such a surreal moment.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. McCain, guilty.

DOYLE: Because as the impeachment vote was happening on the floor ...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Moynihan, not guilty.

DOYLE: ... she was with the quintessential expert on the State of New York, of all things, New York.

BROWN: That expert was Senior Advisor Harold Ickes. Inside the private quarters of the White House, Ickes and First Lady Hillary Clinton were contemplating a run for Senate.

HAROLD ICKES, BILL CLINTON SENIOR ADVISOR: We talked about everything, from fund-raising to how much it was going to cost. We ran the gamut.

BROWN: Hillary pored over research and debated strategy. Then the phone rang.

ICKES: She told the White House operator to put whoever was calling on.

PETER KING, (R) NEW YORK REPRESENTATIVE: So, I just called and said I could to talk to the first lady.

ICKES: We didn't have a television or radio on. And she listened, she said I understand.

KING: What I figured I was the 30th person to call. I had no idea that I was the first guy through.

Where are we going as a nation?

BROWN: New York Republican Congressman Peter King, who had voted against impeachment, delivered the news. President Clinton had been acquitted by the Senate of perjury and obstruction of justice.

ICKES: She put the phone down and it was a slight pause, and she said, "Now, Harold, you know, what were we talking about Herkimer County?" It's an upstate county in New York.

BROWN: So instead of talking about the fact her husband had been acquitted, she wanted to get back to business?

ICKES: Yeah, right back. I could see in her body language that there was a sense of real relief, but she's not easily distracted from the issue at hand.

BROWN: That issue was the launch of her own political career.

BETSY EBELING, HILLARY CLINTON CHILDHOOD FRIEND: Bill was really encouraging her to do this. Lots of people come forward and say you really should think about doing this.

MAGGIE HABERMAN, "NEW YORK TIMES" POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Hillary Clinton felt like she needed something of her own. She needed to essentially move away from being an adjunct of her husband.

BROWN: Maggie Haberman was a local newspaper reporter covering the Senate campaign.

HABERMAN: She saw an open seat and the field was basically cleared for her.

CLINTON: You know, I'm starting a listening tour of New York.

PENN: This Senate race had been a mini-presidential race in terms of stress from day one.

HABERMAN: The idea that the circus was coming to town was really pretty dramatic. We chronicled literally every single movement of the pre-campaign and then the eventual campaign. It was literally seen as the greatest show on earth.

BROWN: The press even followed along as Hillary Clinton house hunted for the first time in decades.

JIM BLAIR, HILLARY CLINTON ARKANSAS FRIEND: They spent most of their married life in public house, so Hillary wants a real house with a real yard. Dorothy looks at her and says, "Now Hillary, the park service is not going to come mow this yard."

BROWN: She settled on this house in the quiet suburb of Chappaqua, New York, 300 miles away from the White House and her husband.

HABERMAN: It was astonishing. In the final few months of her president's term, she was not there at all. It was extremely unusual.

[21:15:05] BROWN: But necessary.

PENN: The question was, how do you go from the White House to running the New York State. You didn't live in New York State. You didn't represent New York State.

BROWN: Clinton had to convince New Yorkers she wasn't an outsider. So, she went on a listening tour of the entire state, all 62 counties.

PENN: This notion of listening first, understanding people's problems first, and then kind of explaining what you thought the solutions might be really just worked perfectly.

CLINTON: Well, I'm not in a campaign yet.

RUDY GIULIANI, NEW YORK FORMER MAYOR: I think they even have flies in Arkansas.

BROWN: Her opponent, Mayor Rudy Giuliani, hit her hard on everything.

GIULIANI: Kind of the way the Clintons play politics, in the name of uniting what they're really trying to do is to divide. It's just kind of sad.

BROWN: Then Giuliani dropped out for personal reasons. Clinton's new opponent, Rick Lazio came out swinging.

CLINTON: I'm happy to when you give me the signed letters. RICK LAZIO, NEW YORK FORMER REPRESENTATIVE: Right here. Right here.

CLINTON: Would you give me?

LAZIO: Right here. Sign it right now.

CLINTON: We'll shake on this.

LAZIO: No, I want your signature.

KING: Every woman who had a crummy husband saw this as, you know, Rick Lazio coming over and tormenting and downgrading her because she was a woman. Whether she intended it or not, the women card in that case worked for her.

BROWN: Two months later, Clinton decisively beat Lazio.

CLINTON: Wow. This is amazing. Thank you all. Thank you.

BROWN: Despite having been first lady, Hillary knew when she arrived on Capitol Hill, she was just the freshman senator from New York.

HABERMAN: She did not act like a celebrity. She didn't act like somebody who should stand out or be treated differently.

CARL BERNSTEIN, HILLARY CLINTON BIOGRAPHER: She decides I'm not going to be a bull in a China shop.

BROWN: From the beginning, Clinton made a point of crossing the aisle, even quietly joining a Republican prayer group.

KING: The idea was sending a signal that hey, if we find common ground, I can work with you on it.

BROWN: She was reaching across the aisle to Republicans and people who wanted to impeach her husband years before.

KING: Yeah, that was the real irony of it. Yeah.

BROWN: Ten months into her first term, came her defining moment as the junior senator from New York, September 11, 2001.

CLINTON: The impact of seeing it first-hand shows what a total hell it is.

BROWN: Amidst the devastation and mourning, a harsh reality.

CLINTON: This is the kind of devastating attack and loss of life that it's almost beyond imagination. And, you know, New York is going to need a lot of help.

BROWN: And money. And it was not just getting it, but the painstaking task of figuring out how to distribute it.

KING: She's got police officers, firefighters, Wall Street executives, investment bankers and how do you decide how much a human being is worth. I mean, it was very tough stuff. She was the senator who took the most active role in that meeting with everybody.

BROWN: She also sponsored a bill to cover medical costs for those who became sick after working at ground zero. It finally passed in 2010. And when President Bush sought congressional authorization to use force in Iraq, claiming that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, the memories of what had happened at ground zero weighed heavily.

DOYLE: She was looking at it from the perspective of the senator from New York after 9/11 and all of those people who died, and all those families who lost loved ones.

CLINTON: So it is with conviction that I support this resolution as being in the best interests of our nation. A vote for it is not a vote to rush to war. It is a vote that puts awesome responsibility in the hands of our president, and we say to him use these powers wisely and as a last resort.

DIANNE FEINSTEIN, (D) CALIFORNIA SENATOR: It's very painful. That was not one of the easier decisions of a tenure in the United States Senate. I have to live with my vote. Hillary does, too.

BROWN: A vote she would wrestle with from that day forward. On the "Today" show in 2006.

CLINTON: Obviously, if we knew then what we know now, there wouldn't have been a vote, and I certainly wouldn't have voted that way.

BROWN: And in her book "Hard Choices" writing, "I wasn't alone in getting it wrong, but I still got it wrong, plain and simple."

Her critics say that little else about her Senate career was memorable.

BERNSTEIN: She was not a senator of great importance in terms of any national legislation or national policy initiatives.

BROWN: Is that a fair criticism?

KING: No, I don't think so. But when it came to getting legislation for New York she was never afraid to invite somebody else to share the stage with her.

BROWN: Now, a politician in her own right and a senator in her own right. But was she ready for a bigger stage?

[21:20:07] CLINTON: I found my own voice.


PRES. BARACK OBAMA, (D) UNITED STATES: I certainly didn't expect to find myself in this position a year ago.

BROWN: January 16th, 2007, Barack Obama, then a freshman Senator from Illinois, released this video.

OBAMA: I've been struck by how hungry we all are for a different kind of politics.

HABERMAN: He announced by video and caught everybody by surprise.

BROWN: Including Hillary Clinton.

HABERMAN: She let Obama get ahead of her. She then had to play catch-up.

H. CLINTON: I'm not just starting a campaign, though. I'm beginning a conversation.

BROWN: With four days after Obama, Clinton hastily released hers. And then days later, formally declared her candidacy in New York City.

H. CLINTON: I am very confident I'm in, I'm in to win, and that's what I intend to do. Thank you all very much.

HABERMAN: It did not feel presidential. It did not feel big.

BROWN: She's someone who is viewed widely as so prepared and methodical and yet this was seen as a thrown-together presidential announcement.

[21:25:06] HABERMAN: She's prepared and methodical but she's not always prepared for the unexpected. And so the unexpected was Barack Obama.

DAVID AXELROD, FORMER SENIOR ADVISER TO BARACK OBAMA: She campaigned almost like a quasi-incumbent. She played it very cautious.

BROWN: Perhaps too cautious. While Barack Obama celebrated his historic candidacy, Hillary Clinton downplayed hers.

PENN: The input that she got, be a strong leader, but don't really play up this notion of first woman president.

BROWN: While Clinton and her campaign steered clear of gender issues, others didn't. Instead, focusing on what she was wearing and how she looked.

JOHN EDWARDS, FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I admire what Senator Clinton has done for America, what her husband did for America. Not sure about that coat.

OBAMA: I actually like Hillary's jacket. Well, I don't know what's wrong with it.

BROWN: How did she handle that?

HABERMAN: With some discomfort, some amusement, a little bit of tension.

They didn't want to call too much attention to the fact that she was a woman.

BROWN: While Barack Obama engaged young voters in a new way, Clinton's Campaign seemed stuck in the '90s.

ICKES: There was a scriptness about Hillary in the early part of the campaign. Too measured.

HABERMAN: There was a lot of debate among her strategists about exactly how to humanize her, how to make her more accessible to people.

BROWN: In fact, there was a lot of debate among her strategists about everything.

It wasn't just good old-fashioned healthy debate. There was some in- fighting.

PENN: Yeah, but, you know, campaigns under stress, right, have that. It's true.

BROWN: The race was tight as they approached the all-important Iowa caucuses. So the campaign turned to its secret weapons.

H. CLINTON: So I wanted to introduce you to my mom and my daughter.

BROWN: An ad called Dorothy hit the air waves.

DOROTHY RODHAM, HILLARY CLINTON'S MOTHER: What I would like people to know about Hillary is what a good person she is.

BROWN: And Chelsea joined her mother and grandmother on the stump and in the diners.

C. CLINTON: Laughing a lot with my grandmother and mother, because my grandmother was really excited about the egg salad sandwich that she said was like the best egg salad switch she had had in, I don't even remember, 20 or 30 years.

BROWN: To show voters more of her humor and humanity, Hillary Clinton started to talk less about policy and more about people.

H. CLINTON: My mother had a difficult childhood but worked hard to provide a loving home for us.

BROWN: But it was too late. Obama beat her badly in Iowa and looked likely to do the same in New Hampshire.

DOYLE: Things looked really, really bleak. There were a lot of options put on the table. One of those options was dropping out. And she was just like no. I'm not a quitter.

BROWN: Hillary Clinton was a fighter, like during this debate on ABC.

SCOTT SPRADLING, WMUR ANCHOR: What can you say to the voter of New Hampshire who see your resume and like it but are hesitating on the likeability issue where they seem to like Barack Obama more?

H. CLINTON: Well, that hurts my feelings.

SPRADLING: I'm sorry, Senator. I'm sorry.

H. CLINTON: I don't think I'm that bad.

OBAMA: You're likeable enough.

H. CLINTON: Thank you.

BROWN: The turning point came on January 7th at a local diner in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Clinton was asked a simple question. What gets you up every day?

H. CLINTON: This is very personal for me. It's not just political. It's not just public. I see what's happening. We have to reverse it.

BROWN: What do you remember about feeling in that moment?

H. CLINTON: I've been through a grueling campaign and there had been ups and there had been downs and it was incredibly, intensely exhausting, physically and emotionally and every other way. And a lot of the emotion that had been there but suppressed because you had to get up every day, do 10 events, travel a thousand miles, just came flooding out and ...

BROWN: I imagine that was liberating.

H. CLINTON: It was surprising.

BROWN: Well, and, you know, you're human and we all have emotions.

H. CLINTON: Oh, don't tell anybody. I've been said, that's one of the best-kept secrets.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Huge wins tonight for Hillary Clinton and John McCain ...

DOYLE: That gave her a lot of energy and focus to continue the fight.

H. CLINTON: I found my own voice.

BROWN: And her sense of humor.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you for coming. I love your outfit.

H. CLINTON: Well, I love your outfit.


H. CLINTON: But I do want the earrings back.


[21:30:00] BROWN: Now she campaign like a challenger, not an incumbent.

AXELROD: There were instances in which we'd stay at the same hotel and we'd get there, you know, at 10:00 and she would get there at midnight and we would leave at 8:00 and she'd have left at 7:00. And it was extraordinary to watch.

BROWN: Clinton turned up the heat.

H. CLINTON: Shame on you, Barack Obama.

PENN: Her debate performances were more aggressive. We finally did the 3:00 am spot that would become iconic.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's 3:00 am and your children are safe and asleep. But there's a phone in the White House and it's ringing.

BROWN: And Chelsea Clinton emerged as a force on the trail.

C. CLINTON: I wound up doing like more than 400 events in less than six months I think in 40 states. Sometimes two people showed up, sometimes like 1,200 people showed up.

BROWN: Some called it the Chelsea effect. Whenever she appeared, the gap between her mother and Obama seemed to shrink.

C.CLINTON: I had to go tell anyone and everyone who may have an iota of interest in listening to me, why I'm so passionately supporting my mom as a daughter, as a Democrat, as an American.

H. CLINTON: I think she'll be more than the voice of change.

BROWN: The tide slowly started to turn. But there was not enough time to catch up. June 3rd, 2008, the last day of Democratic primaries, Clinton took South Dakota.

OBAMA: I will b the Democratic nominee ...

BROWN: But Obama won enough delegates to clinch the nomination. It was over. Hillary Clinton responded with the speech of a lifetime.

H. CLINTON: Although we weren't able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it's got about 18 million cracks in it.

C. CLINTON: I was so proud of how just graceful and gracious she was, and how full of gratitude she was for everyone who was in that old post office building who had supported her, and the 18 million people that she talked about who had put cracks in the glass ceiling.

BROWN: Hillary Clinton's race for the White House was over. But more surprises were still to come.


[21:36:25] BROWN: Days after conceding a hard-fought Democratic primary, Hillary Clinton got a surprising invitation.

FEINSTEIN: I called her and suggested that maybe she would meet with Barack Obama.

BROWN: The secret summit took place on June 5th 2008 at Feinstein's D.C. Home. Clinton got there in a mini van hunkered down in the backseat to avoid reporters, while Obama sent his press corps packing.

AXELROD: It was only after the plane took off that we informed them that Obama was not on the plane. This did not sit well with the press corps, by the way.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is he meeting Senator Clinton?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm not going to get into details of his schedule.

BROWN: What do you remember about them arriving at your house, seeing each other for the first time after this hard-fought battle?

FEINSTEIN: I remember some strain. I had two chairs facing each other in the living room and I left and went upstairs. And about 20 minutes, a half hour later, I heard laughter and I said done.

BROWN: Mission accomplished.

FEINSTEIN: Mission accomplished.

BROWN: A good soldier, Clinton campaigned hard for Obama.

H. CLINTON: The time is now to unite as a single party with a single purpose.

BROWN: After Obama's victory, another surprise. He asked Clinton to serve as his Secretary of State. On February 2nd, 2009 ...

H. CLINTON: I Hillary Rodham Clinton.

BROWN: ... Hillary Clinton was sworn in.

ANDREW SHAPIRO, FOREIGN POLICY ADVISOBROWN: During those first couple years, a lot of it was about rehabilitating the U.S. image in the world.

H. CLINTON: Raise your hands if you have a question.

BROWN: Foreign policy adviser Andrew Shapiro.

SHAPIRO: She would always arrange for what they called a Townerview, which is combination of town hall meeting and interview. And it enabled her to establish a real connection often with the people of those countries.

BROWN: Permission to meet not just world leaders.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What is the situation in ...

BROWN: But also regular citizens, she was called people to people diplomacy.

H. CLINTON: The young woman right there and the young man right there.

BROWN: And brought attention to important issues Clinton had long supported, women's rights, child welfare, the environment. But sometimes, other tactics were required.

JAKE SULLIVAN, CLINTON'S DEPUTY CHIEF: Secretary Clinton and President Obama were both in Copenhagen.

BROWN: Clinton's Deputy Chief of Staff Jake Sullivan was with them helping to hammer out an agreement on climate change.

OBAMA: This distinguished group of leaders from nations ...

BROWN: But key delegations were conspicuously absent. Until someone suggested the Chinese might be hiding in a conference room down the hall.

SULLIVAN: And so, the President and Secretary looked at each other and said let's go.

OBAMA: Are you ready for me? You guys need to talk some more? Up to you.

SULLIVAN: President Obama came to the door first and the Chinese guards had their arms up but he sort of pushed his way through.

OBAMA: Are you waiting for me or do want to want ...

SULLIVAN: Then Secretary Clinton came up to the door and ducked under.

BROWN: They took seats at the table. Hours later, the foundations of a landmark climate change agreement were in place.

[21:40:07] But not everything went as planned.

H. CLINTON: I wanted to present to you with a little gift.

BROWN: There was this badly bungled moment with her Russian counterpart.

H. CLINTON: And that is we want to reset our relationship. We worked hard to get the right Russian word. You think we got it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You got it wrong.

H. CLINTON: I've got it wrong.

AMANDA CARPENTER, CONSERVATIVE COMMENTATOR: As secretary of state, she could've had some kind of landmark moment and she never did.

BROWN: Conservative commentator Amanda Carpenter says Clinton made little impact.

CARPENTER: You talk to her people and they'll say, well, she traveled around. She visited a lot of country. That's not a signature achievement.

BROWN: But what happened in May of 2011 was. H. CLINTON: When I became secretary of state, it's one of the things that I said to the President that if there's any chance we can track and find Bin Laden, I think we have to do it.

BROWN: That chance came when intelligence said Osama bin Laden might be at a hideout in Pakistan.

H. CLINTON: It was a tough call because really experienced people looked at the intelligence differently. I became convinced that it was the right thing to do and made that recommendation to the President in that meeting.

BROWN: Obama and Clinton watched the mission unfold from the situation room.

H. CLINTON: Your heart was in your throat the whole time we were in there. I've never spent a more stressful 30 plus minutes in my life.

SULLIVAN: Remember, she was the senator from New York on 9/11. So this was personal to her. So getting Bin Laden I think was for her such an important way to close a chapter, a very painful chapter.

BROWN: Not long after, a more personal chapter was about to close. With her mother Dorothy.

CLINTON: She was such a great support to me during my entire life, but she lived with us the last 10 years of her life. So, she was just there every day and she gave me a lot of good feedback and advice.

BROWN: On November 1st, 2011, Dorothy Rodham passed away.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When Hillary was traveling as secretary of state, she would leave the light on, on the piano and wait for her to come home.

The first time she went away after her mom die and she was coming back from a trip, I know she was upset about coming home to the house without her mom there. And Bill and Chelsea came in from New York to be in Washington.

BROWN: 10 months after her mother's death, Clinton faced her greatest diplomatic crisis. September 11th, 2012.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A radical Islamic group led the ...

BROWN: Armed men stormed the diplomatic outpost in CIA Annex in Benghazi, Libya.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Killed apparently by a rocket attack ...

BROWN: Four Americans died. The White House confirmed including Ambassador Chris Stevens.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The militants were apparently enraged by ...

BROWN: Conflicting reports immediately emerged. Publicly, the Obama Administration said what's happened was the result of spontaneous protests.

H. CLINTON: Today, we bring home four Americans ...

BROWN: Privately, Clinton referred to the assault as a, "Planned attack."

Do you think that Hillary Clinton misled the country during Benghazi?

KING: I think she went along with the Obama Administration in misleading the country, yes.

BROWN: Years of investigations and hearings concluded that the State Department should have taken much stronger security precautions and that intelligence warnings were ignored.

Investigators concluded Clinton was not directly to blame, but she took responsibility in this CNN interview in 2012.

H. CLINTON: I take responsibility. I'm in charge of the State Department, 60,000 plus people all over the world, 275 posts.

BROWN: That wasn't good enough for Patricia Smith, whose son Sean was killed that day.

PATRICIA SMITH, MOTHER OF SEAN SMITH: I blame Hillary Clinton, personally, for the death of my son. That's personally.

BROWN: How do you feel when relatives of the four Americans killed that night continue to blame you personally for their deaths?

CLINTON: Well, I feel very sorry for them. I understand the grief that they still must be experiencing. And I'm, you know, very sympathetic to their feelings.

[21:44:59] There have been nine independent investigations, most of them done by the other party, and there's no basis for their feelings. But that doesn't mean their feelings aren't real, so I respect that. I just have to accept that, you know, one or two people are going to feel that way and that's their right. And then the weight of the evidence is pretty clear about, you know, what was happening and what we were trying to manage at the time.

BROWN: In fact, the last of the investigations was revealed to also be politically motivated when the number two Republican in the House said this.

KEVIN MCCARTHY, U.S. REPRESENTATIVE: Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she's untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened had we not fought and made that happened.

BROWN: Benghazi remains a haunting legacy for Clinton.

CLINTON: You know, I would imagine I thought more about what happened than all of you put together. I've lost more sleep than all of you put together.

BROWN: But the political fallout didn't keep her from running for president one more time.

CLINTON: Let's go out and make that case to America. Thank you.

BROWN: Next.


[21:50:27] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Congratulations, Chelsea.

BROWN: After stepping down from her post as America's top diplomat, Hillary Clinton soon added another title to her resume, grandma.

You know being a grandmother I imagine that's a big priority for her.

C. CLINTON: I think it's the number one priority for her. I mean, she face times with us every day. She's very hands-on. She changes diapers. She helps give Charlotte her bottle before bed. And I have no doubt that that's the type of grandmother she would be.

H. CLINTON: When you have grandchildren, you can really enjoy them and you can spend time thinking about their futures.

And I want every kid to have every opportunity to just go as far as their hard work and talent will take them, starting, of course, with my grandchildren, but I don't want to stop there. That's not enough. I want kids in our country to feel like the American dream is alive and well for them.

I've spent my life fighting for children, families and our country, and I'm not stopping now.

BROWN: In June of 2015, children were a centerpiece as Clinton announced her second run for president.

What do you think ultimately pushed her to run again?

HABERMAN: I think that she had unfinished business. In 2008, she was very much still running as Bill Clinton's third terms. She was now emerging in her own right and I think that was very important to her.

H. CLINTON: Breathing a big sigh of relief. Thank you, Iowa.

BROWN: Clinton won the Iowa caucuses. But once again, a surprising challenger emerged. 74 year old self-proclaimed Democratic socialist, Senator Bernie Sanders, finished a strong second.


BROWN: And the race was on.

HABERMAN: Sanders was really able to create grassroots movement. The Clinton machine simply failed to see this coming and take it seriously as did many in the press. AXELROD: So, I'm sure there were people who were involved with her in 2008 who had those moments, how could this happen again. But the advantage they had was that it did happened before and they were better prepared for it this time.

BROWN: Better prepared and better organized to amass the delegates needed to win the nomination.

H. CLINTON: Thank you so much, South Carolina.

BROWN: By June, the Clinton campaign's hard work had paid off.

H. CLINTON: The first time in our nation's history that a woman will be a major party's nominee.

LISA CAPUTO, FORMER PRESS SECRETARY TO HILLARY CLINTON: It is historic, but it's almost more than historic. This is profoundly important for, not just the direction of our country, but for women.

BROWN: But one big shadow still hung over the campaign.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Will you explain the e-mails, Secretary Clinton?

BROWN: Back in March of 2015, a "New York Times" report launched the investigation that would unravel throughout her campaign. Clinton had used a private server as her only source of e-mail communication for official State Department business. And it was not government sanctioned.

H. CLINTON: Looking back, it would have been better if I had simply used a second e-mail account, and carried a second phone, but at the time, this didn't seem like an issue.

BROWN: But it was an issue and the FBI launched an investigation.

Why was her use of a private e-mail server so problematic when she was secretary of state?

CARPENTER: A, because it opposes national security risk. But then also, it's very clear that she put this offline so that no one else could see it.

BROWN: And that just feeds into this perception that she's not trustworthy in your view.

CARPENTER: Correct, because there's just been such a legacy of these kinds of scandals built up over time.

BROWN: The muddled response only made matters worse.

AXELROD: There were different approaches, some were dismissive.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you wipe the server?

H. CLINTON: What, like, with a cloth or something?

AXELROD: Some were remorseful.

H. CLINTON: I used a single account for convenience. Obviously, these years later, it doesn't look so convenient.

AXELROD: But they weren't consistent.

BROWN: It would take six months before Clinton said the words many had been waiting for.

[21:54:59] H. CLINTON: That was a mistake. I'm sorry about that. I take responsibility.

AXELROD: If you look at polling, she took a big hit when that story surfaced in terms of those measures of trust, honesty. She's never fully recovered from that.

BROWN: How much personal responsibility do you take for those poll numbers showing that people have a hard time trusting you?

H. CLINTON: Well, I think I have to take ultimate responsibility because, clearly, I am not communicating effectively. There is a disconnect between how I'm perceived when I'm doing a job, and how people are viewing me when I am seeking a job.

BROWN: Just one month after Clinton clinched her party's nomination, the FBI announced the results of its investigation.

JAMES COMEY, FBI DIRECTOR: Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive highly classified information.

BROWN: Though, Clinton would not face any criminal charges, and the court of public opinion, the jury was still out.

You have covered her for so many years. You find that she has a problem with honesty and transparency?

HABERMAN: I think they're not the same thing. I think she does have a problem with transparency. Every politician has some level of a problem with transparency, but the net effect doesn't really matter because that is how voters now see it is that she has honesty problem.

AXELROD: The classic criticism is lack of authenticity, but I think it's a guardedness. I think there is a lot of scar tissue from the battles that she's fought. She's learned to be reserved. She's learned that words can be used against you, so use them very carefully.

BROWN: But yet that hurts her.

AXELROD: It does hurt her. It does hurt her, but, you know, people are complicated.

ICKES: There's no one element that's the real Hillary Clinton. You're talking about a woman who likes to know how thick the ice is before she steps out on it.

There is the engaging, warm, delightful, seductive Hillary. So there are several Hillary Clintons.

KING: She's a complex person, but she's not the caricature. She's not the great heroine that has supporters think she is and she's not this evil person that her enemies think.

BROWN: There were so many versions of you out there. Who is the real Hillary Clinton?

H. CLINTON: Just the same person I've always been. I am always amused by the various scenarios about me and the kinds of caricatures of me.

Again, I don't have a lot of control over that. I just get up every day, do what I believe is the right thing to do. And I don't know anything else to do other than to be me.

BROWN: But do you ever see a version and say, who is that person?

H. CLINTON: Oh, all the time. Oh, I read things about me and I say, well, I wouldn't like her either. I mean, really, who is this person?

C. CLINTON: It's so clear to me who my mother is. She is kind, hilarious, compassionate, warm, loving.

She does have, I think, the best laugh. And I wish more people could see that. And I wish more people on the kind of public advocacy side could recognize kind of her lifelong commitment to children and to families and that that really has been the core thread of her life.

BROWN: The core of her life and the core of her mission to break that final glass ceiling.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Please welcome Chelsea Clinton.

BROWN: That moment when your daughter was on stage and introduced you as her mother and the first female presidential nominee of a major party, what was that like for you?

H. CLINTON: Oh, my gosh. I was watching backstage and I thought, I'm such a lucky person no matter what happens, I just feel blessed.

C. CLINTON: My mother, my hero, and our next president, Hillary Clinton.

H. CLINTON: I was worried that I might just burst into tears. I really thought, oh my gosh, this is going to be so emotional.

Thank you for that amazing welcome.

Thinking about my mother, seeing my daughter, knowing that I was about to accept this nomination and the responsibility that went with it was an overwhelming moment and I will never forget it. And so, my friends, it is with humility, determination and boundless confidence in America's promise, that I accept your nomination for president of the United States.