November 8 inches closer and closer and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton sat down with Power 105.1’s The Breakfast Club today (October 26) on her birthday (she didn’t divulge her age, but there’s Google for that). She spoke on a range of topics before Election Day where she will go up against Republican nominee Donald Trump. From the political to the passé, the former Secretary of State and now Democratic nominee shared her thoughts on police brutality and the infamous Death Row memes inspired by her debate outfits.
Check out our 10 takeaways:
What It Means To Be The First Woman President
If elected to be President of the United States of America, Hillary would be the first woman to hold the position. This follows eight years of President Barack Obama leading the nation as the first black Commander in Chief. Clinton shares her thoughts on the accomplishment when asked why the “first woman president” title isn’t being touted as much as when President Obama was campaigning to be the first black man to sit in the Oval Office.
“I’m not exactly sure,” she says. “I think part of it is people are trying to figure out what that means and most people are ok with it, but some people are still having questions about it. I’m proud to be a woman running for president. I’d be just incredibly humbled and honored to be the first woman president, but I’ve tried to emphasize to people that, hey, just like President Obama was a really good president, and the fact that he was black, I think was historic and unprecedented, but he also claimed and owned his excellence. That’s why I’m saying, ok, I think it’s really exciting and historic that I would be the first woman president, but I’ve got a lot of work I wanna do and I hope that people will say hey she’s getting it done.”
Embracing Younger Generation
With the race looking tight, Clinton knows the importance of reaching young voters, who are possibly casting their ballots for the first time. She says that it’s important for millennials to understand that the work doesn’t end at the voting booth.
“Every election’s about the future, which by definition means it’s more about the future of young people than it is about me,” Clinton states. “… I want young people to be involved and I especially want young people to vote. I’m excited when I go to events and somebody comes up and says, ‘I’m gonna give you my first vote.’ Or ‘This is my first time to vote.’ But I don’t want it to stop there.”
Her Thoughts On Debating Donald Trump
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump squared off in three debates that seemed grueling for both parties (and the internet). Clinton says she wished she could’ve shared more of her plans to tackle important issues that everyday Americans face instead of media fodder.
“I’m sitting there thinking, ‘What is going on here?'” Clinton says. “We’ve got incredible opportunities as well as some big challenges. That’s what we should be talking about. I am debating someone who is the nominee of the other party. So they chose him and I have to accept that, but who isn’t ready to talk to me about what’s the best way to make college affordable, or what are we going to do to really reform criminal justice from end to end, or how are we going to deal with the epidemic of gun violence, or what are we going to do about prescription drug costs. I’ve laid out plans on all of this because that’s what people have talked to me about. It was hard even getting some of those important issues into the debates because of the way that he wanted to talk about as you say so correctly, insults, not issues, insults.”
How She’s Going To Stop Gun Violence
So if she didn’t get to share her visions at the debates, The Breakfast Club hosts allow her the platform to share her thoughts on issues such as gun violence.
“This is a public health epidemic,” she says. “It is the number one cause of death for young African-American men. More than the next nine causes put together. It also kills 33,000 people a year. Some of those are suicides and some of those are terrible accidents and some of them are killings, murders. So here’s what I say, the first thing is, we got to make sure we get guns out of the wrong hands. I want comprehensive background checks, I want to close what’s called the online loophole and the gun show loophole. I want to reverse this terrible law, President Obama and I were in the Senate together, we voted against this, but it passed because the gun lobby wanted it, and it was to just give like a free pass, no liability to gun makers and sellers. So we gotta have a really concerted effort and the sad part is, a vast majority of Americans agree with everything I’ve just said, and a big majority of gun owners. But what happens is, the gun lobby whips up people and makes them believe that President Obama or I, we’re coming for their guns. Well, that’s ridiculous. He’s said it. I’ve said it, but we do want to save your life by keeping the gun out of somebody who shouldn’t have it’s hands.”
How Bill Clinton Will Be As The First “First Man”
Not only would Hillary be the first woman president if elected, but her husband and former president Bill Clinton would be the first “First Man” in United States history. She is adamant Bill will not do any of the White House decorating, but she does share what they have talked about for his passion project.
“I’ve asked him to work on trying to bring more economic opportunity into places that have been left out,” Hillary shares. “He did a lot of that when he was president. But we have inner cities, we have rural communities, we have Indian reservations, we have places in our country that really have been just forgotten. I would like him to work with the government, work with the cabinet, to come up with ideas about what we’re gonna do. There’s a great proposal by Jim Clyburn, the Congressman from South Carolina, he’s the highest-ranking African-American in the Congress, he has something called 10-20-30, which is saying that 10 percent of federal funds should go to 20 percent of the communities that have had longstanding poverty for 30 years or more. I love that idea because there are places that are thriving in America that don’t need very much help, then there are places where people feel so discouraged and so left behind like nobody cares about them and I wanna try to help there and he can be a big help.”
How She’s Going To Address Police Brutality
With racial tensions high in the country, Clinton says she understands the importance of addressing police brutality. She’s hopeful she can create an environment where police and the communities they serve can have healthy communication for an issue that has deep roots. She cites the example of a barber in North Carolina who started a program called Cops & Barbers where he seeks to find common ground between his community in Charlotte and the police who are called to serve and protect.
“We have to face up to systemic racism,” she says. “We see it in jobs, we see it in education, we see it in housing, but let’s be really clear, it’s a big part of what we’re facing in the criminal justice system. African-American men get arrested, charged, convicted and incarcerated far more often and for far longer for doing the same thing that white men do. So for me, that is just fundamentally unfair. That’s against American values. So I’m going to do everything I can to restore trust and build back those bonds between the police and communities. I think we’re all safer when the police respect the communities they’re supposed to serve and the communities respect the law. So we got a long way to go before we’re back there. But I’ve been working with a really broad range of people, including yesterday in North Carolina, I was with some of the mothers of the movement, including Gwen Carr, Eric Garner’s mother and she’s traveled around with me and I’ve gotten to know her and the other mothers pretty well, mothers who’ve lost children through police incidents or through gun violence. And she said something that, boy, really made a huge impression on me. She said, after Eric died, she thought to herself she couldn’t get out of bed. Then she almost heard God saying to her, ‘You need to get up and do something to honor him.’ So she’s been going around talking to churches, talking to community groups, and she said look, we’re gonna turn our sorrow into a strategy and our mourning into a movement. So that’s what I wanna see. I want people to come together and listen respectfully. We need better police training. I think there should be national standards on the use of lethal force. I think one of the big problems we’ve got and police tell me this, is most police don’t know how to deal with mental health problems, so we need better mental health response. I don’t think the police, even if we train them, can be as good as psychologists and psychiatrists and others knowing what’s happening to somebody. So we’ve got to have a more coherent, comprehensive approach. It’s going to be one of my highest priorities in bringing the community together.”
How Her Supporters Encourage Her To Unite The Country
Hillary says she is “thrilled” to have the support of so many people. It was announced this week that Jay Z is going to perform at a concert in the swing state of Ohio to show he is with her. She expresses that Trump’s divisive tactics give her extra motivation to bring people together.
“What Trump has done is to make it possible for people who have racist and sexist and all kinds of prejudices and bigotry, to put them right out there,” she says. “Now, I’m not going to be able to wave a magic wand and change everybody’s thoughts — that’s something that can only happen by people working on themselves and being held to account by the rest of us. But what he’s done really unleashed a lot of darkness and divisiveness. We’ve got to say, hey look, that is just not acceptable. We’re not gonna sit here and accept that. People, when we do humor, when we make speeches, when we’re just talking to our friends, everybody needs to have a little bit more of an attitude, hey you know what, we can’t say that about somebody else because you know what, that can create a real repercussion, and somebody’s gonna be saying that about us.”
Her Reactions To Death Row & New York Memes
The internet had a field day during the debates, which featured the infamous lines “bad hombre” and “nasty woman.” But perhaps the best memes were those comparing Hillary’s fashion choices to that of Death Row artists Tupac, Suge Knight and Snoop Dogg. Clinton shares that she does in fact take time to laugh at everything going on and watches the Saturday Night Live skits of the election. When the radio hosts show her the Death Row meme, she laughs heartily.
“I think Death Row and a lot of other fashion sources have influenced my look, don’t you?” she says.
Charlamagne Tha God is wearing a T-shirt of Clinton wearing a New York Yankees hat and says people are making memes with her and the infamous Empire State saying, “deadass.” She laughs again and explains her love for the baseball team.
“When I was a little girl, my father was just an incredible fan of the Cubs, we used to watch every game, every game we could watch,” she says. “And in those days, games were on in the afternoon because there were no lights in Wrigley Field. They just kept losing, so I said to my father, I said, I was like really young 5 or 6, but I understood there was a difference between winning and losing. So I said, you gotta get a winning team. He said, well you can’t. You gotta stick with the Cubs. I said, ‘Ok, well I’ll stick with somebody who doesn’t play the Cubs.’ I couldn’t be a White Sox fan, ’cause that’s like being a Mets or a Yankees fan. So I started looking at baseball cards and talking to kids. I said, the Yankees always win, so I’ll be depressed about the Cubs and I’ll be happy about the Yankees. That’s how I balanced it out.”
She explains where the image came from and shares a favorite story about celebrating Michelle Obama’s birthday party with Beyonce.
“I think that was when the Yankees came to the White House,” she says. “That was a long time ago. But I went to Michelle’s 50th birthday party and Beyonce performed and that was great dancing.”
How Her Health Is Holding Up
When asked about her health because of recent scares, Hillary says she is perfectly fine now.
“I spent four and a half hours debating Donald Trump in three debates, which I think should put to rest any questions about my stamina, my ability to do this job,” she says. “It’s exhausting. There’s no doubt about it.”
Stevie Wonder Co-Signs Hillary Clinton For President
Stevie Wonder joins the show to sing “Happy Birthday” to Clinton and shares why he’s voting for her. He says that he supports people for more than the words they say, but because of their genuine spirit. As a blind man, he appreciates Clinton’s awareness for the needs of many people, including those in the disabled community.
“Contrary to what people are saying, you can’t go by what people say, but by their spirit,” he says. “And when she talks about the things that she’s done for far longer than just the 30 years that she talks about, I think since she had in her spirit what she received from her father, from her parents, the lessons she learned, to understand that we have to be respectful to one another, that we have to have pride in not just one people, but all people, we have to truly become a united people of the United States of America and divisiveness can not make that happen. Disrespecting one’s ethnicity or their religious preference, on and on and on, if they have a disability, is not anything that has to do when we talk about democracy, equality. We can’t live in a place of fear. Fear is what puts dreams to sleep. So I think that first law and order comes from having respect for one another. You can’t just have it one way because you’ve got the power. The power has to be in your desire to see everyone thrive.”