- The Washington Times - Monday, February 7, 2000

She cares about your children almost as much as you do.
That was the message of the 18-minute campaign video shown yesterday in New York as Hillary Rodham Clinton announced her bid for a Senate seat.
From the opening moments when a child sang a song for the first lady until the end, when she spoke of her "profound gratitude" for daughter Chelsea, the video profile emphasized Mrs. Clinton's role as an empathetic surrogate mother to the nation's children.
Recalling her own childhood in Park Ridge, Ill., a wealthy Chicago suburb, Hillary spoke of growing up in a "close-knit neighborhood" with "good public schools." But, she soon learned that not all children had those advantages.
"When I think about why I became so concerned about and devoted to the well-being of children," Mrs. Clinton said in the video, she thought of her youthful experience "baby-sitting at a migrant labor camp."
There, she said, she discovered that poor kids "were children just like me."
The video was produced by Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, the successful Hollywood TV producer who also made "The Man from Hope," the video biography of Bill Clinton shown at the 1992 Democratic National Convention.
Throughout the video, images of Mrs. Clinton surrounded by children were interlaced with testimonials to her deep devotion to the well-being of children. Among those testifying to her love of children were famed pediatrician Dr. T. Berry Brazelton, who said, "Hillary Clinton is my hero."
Officials in Arkansas lauded Mrs. Clinton's role in that state's children's health programs and public education during her husband's tenure as governor.
Her husband, President Clinton, made just one brief appearance in the video, saying his wife can "bring people together and lift them up." But Mrs. Clinton's mother, Dorothy Rodham, was featured throughout.
"She was always very thoughtful," Mrs. Rodham said of her daughter. "A good child, without being too good."
Mrs. Clinton herself appeared in interview segments, bathed in golden light and looking at least a decade younger than her 52 years. "I think health care is a fundamental right," she said.
Later in the video, apparently seeking the housewife vote, Mrs. Clinton exclaimed: "I make a mean tossed salad. I make a great omelet."
In the campaign's bid for veterans' votes, an ailing Army colonel testified to Mrs. Clinton's efforts on his behalf. "She took a direct, personal interest in my illness," retired Col. Herbert Smith said on the video. "Because of Hillary, Gulf War Syndrome is being taken seriously… . I can't help but admire her. She's a beautiful lady."
Democratic Party regulars also appeared to offer enthusiastic praise in the video. Sen. Barbara Boxer of California, Mrs. Clinton's sister-in-law, reminded viewers that, even as a young woman, the future first lady "was a star."
Mrs. Boxer referred to the Wellesley College graduation speech that landed young Hillary Rodham on the cover of Life magazine. But there was not a word of the 1969 speech itself, in which she proclaimed: "We are, all of us, exploring a world that none of us understands and attempting to create within that uncertainty" and, "We're searching for a more immediate, ecstatic and penetrating mode of living."
Rep. Nita Lowey, New York Democrat, promised that Mrs. Clinton's "thoughtful, eloquent words will be heard" in Washington. Viewers saw Mrs. Clinton addressing a 1995 U.N. conference on women in Beijing.
"She's very good at bringing people together to find common ground," Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin assured viewers.
Another strength her mother recalled, "She's got a great sense of humor."

This story is based in part on wire service reports.

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