Clinton: Why I'm Minnesota's best choice
On Tuesday, Minnesotans will help pick the next president of the United States. This is an incredible responsibility. The next president will face unprecedented challenges here at home and around the world -- from a health-care crisis, to a strug...
On Tuesday, Minnesotans will help pick the next president of the United States. This is an incredible responsibility. The next president will face unprecedented challenges here at home and around the world -- from a health-care crisis, to a struggling economy to the war in Iraq. That president must be ready to lead from the moment he -- or she -- takes the oath of office, ready to address crises we cannot predict and make split-second decisions to protect lives.
So when you head to the caucus, I hope you'll ask yourself one question: Who is ready to be the best president and make the real change we need starting on day one?
Each of the candidates in this election has an idea about how you make change. Some believe you make change by demanding it. Others believe you make change by hoping for it. I believe you make change by working hard for it. That's what I've done my entire life.
I've spent 35 years in public service because I believe every American deserves the chance to live up to his or her God-given potential. That's why I went to work for the Children's Defense Fund, advocating for neglected children and children with disabilities. In Arkansas, I helped reform struggling schools. And as First Lady, I traveled to Beijing, stood up to the Chinese government, and said that women's rights deserve to be treated as human rights.
I also fought for health care for every man, woman, and child -- and it was a pretty lonely battle back in 1993. When we didn't succeed, I didn't give up. I helped create the State Children's Health Insurance Program to provide health care for six million children.
The fact is, this election isn't about choosing change over experience. Change comes only with experience. And I'll bring my experience to make change happen starting on day one.
When I'm president, we'll declare a new beginning for the 21st century. We'll achieve health care for all Americans. We'll combat global warming and create five million new jobs in clean energy, biofuels and energy efficiency. We'll support unions, cut taxes for middle-class families and return to fiscal responsibility. We'll fix No Child Left Behind and make college affordable. And we'll return to an old-fashioned idea: appointing qualified people to our government again. I'll end the cronyism and no-bid contracts to Halliburton.
We'll restore America's leadership in the world. When I'm president, the era of cowboy diplomacy will be over. And if the president won't end the war in Iraq before he leaves office, when I'm president, I will.
For Minnesotans it is important for you to know that after the Interstate 35W bridge collapse, I unveiled my Rebuild America Plan, which includes establishing a $10 billion Emergency Repair Fund to address the backlog of critical infrastructure repairs and provides $250 million in Emergency Assessments Grants to states to conduct safety reviews of their infrastructure.
We know that investing in our nation's infrastructure is vital for our safety and our economy. Mining and timber operations require that roads and rails are safe and efficient and that our Great Lakes freighters have clear ports and locks.
I have pledged that as president I will protect and restore the Great Lakes. We need to do this not simply because it is the right thing to do for the environment, but because the economy of this region depends upon our doing so.
But I can't do these things without you. I need your support. So I am asking you to think about the big challenges ahead. I am asking you to choose the candidate best-prepared to make change happen starting on day one. And I am asking you to caucus for me. Together, we'll make history.
Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York is a Democratic candidate for president of the United States.