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New York man on Hillary Clinton
"She can get things done for New York."
 real 28k

Wednesday, 8 November, 2000, 23:48 GMT
Hillary rules out 2004 presidency
Hillary Clinton
Mrs Clinton says she will serve her full term
First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, who made history by winning a New York Senate seat, says she will not run for the White House in 2004.

Mrs Clinton was elected as senator for New York - the first presidential wife to be elected to national office - with a solid victory over Republican Representative Rick Lazio on Tuesday.


I would not have been standing there without the support and work of my husband

Hillary Rodham Clinton

In a news conference on Wednesday, Mrs Clinton, who is reported to have presidential ambitions, said she would serve her full term instead of standing for the White House in the next presidential election.

Heading for her new career in Washington just as her husband's ends, she said she was confident she could work with political figures they have both fought during the Clinton administration.

"I see this as a real opportunity to work in a bipartisan way with people who are interested in many of the same concerns that I have been interested in for a lifetime," she said.

She also praised the roles of her husband and New York State's women in her victory.

"I would not have been standing there without the support and work of my husband," she said.

Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton: praised for his role in Hillary's victory
"And I don't think that as a new Democrat I would have been standing there without his leadership of the Democratic Party and of our country."

Mrs Clinton said that women voters had played a "decisive role" in her victory.

She had received 61% of women's votes and close to a majority of men's.

"It was a very powerful statement about what women voters care about - which is what I care about," she said.

Priorities

Mrs Clinton said that she would make a gradual transition from her responsibilities as First Lady to the role of senator, dividing her time between the two roles in the next two months.

She intended to make the upstate economy, healthcare and education her priorities in the new job, she said.

Loyal Democrats

The First Lady won by a double-digit margin - 55% to 43% -- over Mr Lazio, a four-term congressman.

In her acceptance speech on Tuesday, she promised to reach out across party lines in order to bring progress to all of New York.

Republican Rick Lazio
Lazio regrets aggressive campaign tactics
"I say thank you from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for seeing possibilities of what we can do together for our children, and for our future," she said.

The result marked the end one of the most acrimonious and closely fought campaigns to enter the US senate.

Mrs Clinton fought to persuade loyal Democrats, especially black, Hispanics, Jewish and women voters who turned out in large numbers.

But during the campaign, the Republicans characterised the First Lady as a carpetbagger, opportunistically moving to New York to pursue her political ambitions.

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See also:

08 Nov 00 | Vote USA 2000
The first First Lady in the Senate
26 Oct 00 | Americas
Hillary returns pro-Palestinian cash
09 Oct 00 | Americas
Hillary, Lazio in second face off
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