Clinton Says Wealth Comments Don’t Define Her

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Hillary Rodham Clinton

DENVER (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton says her “inartful” comments about her family’s wealth don’t reflect who she really is, pointing to her efforts to help working families.

The potential 2016 Democratic presidential candidate said in an interview with PBS’ “NewsHour” airing Wednesday that she understands that the recession hasn’t ended for many Americans and “not enough new jobs or new businesses are being created.”

“I shouldn’t have said the five or so words that I said, but my inartful use of those few words doesn’t change who I am, what I’ve stood for my entire life, what I stand for today,” Clinton said.

The former secretary of state has been criticized by Republicans for her recent remarks about her family’s post-presidential wealth. In an interview with ABC News to promote her new book, “Hard Choices,” Clinton said earlier this month that she and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, were “dead broke” when they left the White House in early 2001. Republicans noted the Clintons have made millions of dollars since the end of Clinton’s presidency.

PBS’ Gwen Ifill pointed out in the interview that Bill Clinton felt compelled to defend his wife on stage at the Clinton Global Initiative America meeting. He told NBC News at the event that his wife was “not out of touch.”

Hillary Clinton said it was a “false equivalency” to compare Democrats’ critique of Republican Mitt Romney’s wealth in 2012 and pointed to her record of supporting increasing the minimum wage and equal pay for women. She said her husband was “very sweet” to defend her, “but I don’t need anybody to defend my record, I think my record speaks for itself.”

On Wednesday, as Hillary Clinton attended events on the West Coast, the former president welcomed Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who is also considering a 2016 presidential campaign.

The ex-president called O’Malley a “terrific governor” and noted that O’Malley’s endorsed lieutenant governor, Anthony Brown, won an easy victory in Maryland’s Democratic gubernatorial primary Tuesday. Clinton said it showed people in Maryland “like where they’re going and believe in what they’re doing.”

O’Malley announced a project in the mid-Atlantic to invest in infrastructure projects. The governor is considering a White House bid, which could hinge on whether Hillary Clinton seeks the presidency.

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