- The Washington Times - Sunday, January 24, 2016

Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton said Sunday that she plans to win her party’s nomination so former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg “doesn’t have to.”

“The way I read what he said is, if I didn’t get the nomination, he might consider it,” Mrs. Clinton said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “Well, I’m going to relieve him of that and get the nomination so he doesn’t have to.”

Mr. Bloomberg is floating the idea of a third-party presidential bid if the general election is between Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist, and Republican front-runner Donald Trump.

“[Mr. Bloomberg] is a good friend of mine, and I’m going to do the best to make sure that I get the nomination, and we’ll go from there,” Mrs. Clinton said.

Mrs. Clinton also responded to Mr. Sanders’ critiques about her giving paid speeches to Wall Street companies. Mr. Sanders’ central campaign theme has been hitting big banks for having too much power in the political process.

“I gave speeches to a wide array of groups, from health care groups to auto dealers and many, many more,” she said. “And I think what they were interested in, because what we talked about, was the world. Coming off of four years as secretary of state, in a complicated world, people were interested in what I saw, what I thought, they asked questions about the matters that were on their mind.”

She said the paid speeches would not influence her decisions as president.

“Absolutely not,” Mrs. Clinton said. “You know, first of all, I was a senator from New York. I took them on when I was a senator.”

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