Former secretary of State and Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton met with the leader of New Zealand at an unofficial breakfast Monday, where she complained that she didn’t receive fair treatment in the U.S. election.
“I was surprised at the level of ingrained sexism and misogyny in people’s reactions and the coverage of the campaign,” Clinton told New Zealand news outlet The Stuff.
“And the more I thought about it and studied about it, the more I realized was a factor.”
Clinton met with Jacinda Ardern, the leader of New Zealand’s labour party, who was elected prime minister in October, and the two reportedly discussed the difficulties of motherhood on holding office and other issues.
“When she won I was thrilled because, after my election, to see a young woman become prime minister was such a … really a shot of optimism,” Clinton said.
“So when we talked, we talked about everything. We talked about being a mother and combining public official responsibilities with motherhood,” Clinton said.
Since losing the U.S. election to President Donald Trump, Clinton has traveled to many countries around the world and blamed her loss on different factors, but in New Zealand she focused on another aspect of the 2016 cycle.
She delivered a speech in Auckland, New Zealand, about her book and about how she sees the future of global politics.
“This is so new,” Clinton said of Trump’s style of campaigning. “Part of our problem was this unprecedented reality TV campaign and him being the first reality TV candidate in our history.
The media didn’t know how to cover him. It was like they were watching a car wreck or train wreck all the time they couldn’t take their eyes away, they didn’t know what to make of it.”
Clinton said she would not challenge Trump in 2020, but believes now that the world knows who Trump is, someone could beat him.
“I mean I’m not going to run. But we now know a lot more about the kind of campaign he runs and the kind of candidate he is.”
At a press conference after the breakfast, Ardern said her meeting with Clinton would not affect New Zealand’s relationship with the Trump administration because it was not an official visit.
Ardern said they discussed “domestic policy here in New Zealand, the future of work for instance, geopolitical environment, and also being a mum in the political frame.”
“When it comes to the visits of those who are not guests of the government I make sure that they are treated appropriately,” Ardern said. “It wasn’t a formal meeting, there was, therefore, no media,” she said.
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