With only days to go before the New Hampshire primary, Senator Hillary Clinton sat down exclusively with Access Hollywood’s Maria Menounos for a candid interview.
From a love of “Dancing With the Stars” to not knowing how to program her iPod, the presidential candidate revealed she’s more of an everyday woman than some might think.
In an era when image can make or break a presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton told Access Hollywood that she is concerned with the same issues many other women think about, including weight and body image.
“Who isn’t, really?” Clinton said.
Clinton credits her friends for lending their support and sense of humor when it comes to dealing with image concerns.
“I have such a great group of friends — friends that I have going back to literally kindergarten,” she enthused. “Sometimes we have the same conversations we had in high school or college. I am still being kidded by my friends because I am, you know, hopeless when it comes to doing my own hair.”
The senator has very little free time while crisscrossing the country in her bid for the White House, but when she’s able to find a few moments to herself, she enjoys a very popular habit.
“Sleep!” Clinton said. “[I] catch up on that.”
Another thing the former First Lady uses her personal time for – getting her home in order.
“Usually I do some kind of cleaning activity. I find cleaning closets and drawers to be extremely gratifying because you know there is a beginning, a middle and an end, unlike a lot of what I do which seems to be much more long term,” she laughed.
Clinton also admitted she has a fondness for heading outdoors with her husband, former President Bill Clinton, and their dog, but she’s happy to spend time on her own as well.
“I have even been known, on occasion, to go to a movie by myself because I don’t get a lot of chances to go to movies,” she said.
She also has a penchant for at least one reality television show.
“My 88-year-old mother lives with us and she is a big fan of ‘Dancing With the Stars.’ If I am home, which is not that often, I will watch it with her,” Clinton said. “She has a running commentary about everybody!”
Like millions of Americans, Clinton owns an iPod. Just don’t ask her how to program it.
“Luckily I have a lot of smart, young, technologically-savvy people around me,” she said. “They do all of that kind of work for me, to get me sort of clued in and available to understand what is going on in your life and their lives.”
Reality TV and iPods may be fun banter, but Senator Clinton is a presidential hopeful and she shared with Access her passion for change.
“I am passionate about this country and what we need to do to change what is happening,” she said. “I know that you don’t get change by hoping for it or demanding it. You get change by working hard to bring people together. That’s what I have done my whole life and I want people to know that about me. To know that I am a fighter, you know you can’t be a president that says, ‘Send me to White House and everything will be wonderful!’ That is not the way the world works.”
And speaking of her fighting spirit, when asked specifically about women turning out in large numbers in Iowa apparently handing Barack Obama a victory, Clinton responded optimistically saying she is looking forward to the next caucus.
“You know elections have sort of rhythms to them,” she explained. “Now we are in New Hampshire. The reason you have so many different contests between January 3 and February 5 until we pick our nominee is because you want to see a candidate evolve, you want to see the give and take in the campaign. I feel that is happening here in New Hampshire. So I feel very good about that.”
Though positive about her New Hampshire outlook, what will Clinton do if she doesn’t take New Hampshire?
“Well, I am gonna do everything I can to do the very best here in New Hampshire,” she said. “I feel good about the excitement that’s building. I have never been in a campaign with my husband or on my own where there wasn’t ups and downs, so none of this is surprising to me.”
In fact, Clinton noted that her husband didn’t win everything during his White House bid.
“My husband was laughing the other day because he didn’t win anything for like a month. There were five or six different elections and caucuses — he didn’t win anything. He came in second, he came in third and then he broke through. So you don’t think about it. You just get up and you keep going,” she said. “I had always planned to run a national campaign and that’s what I’m going to do. You know, end on midnight February 5th on the west coast when California votes. That’s a pretty important point to aim toward.”
When asked about the challenges of being a woman in a male dominated presidential field, Clinton recognized it can be tough.
“I think it’s very daunting because it hasn’t been done before and that means you just have to be yourself,” she said.
And though this woman may be running for president, Clinton conducts the end of her day like many Americans – with a chat with her spouse.
“We talk back and forth,” she smiled. “It is so wonderful having Bill and Chelsea with me here in New Hampshire. It brings back a lot of great memories for us and we are making new memories everyday here.”