Hillary Clinton, Y'all

Yesterday, Hillary Clinton sat down for an extensive interview with Nick Kristof (ugh) at the Women in the World Conference. Below, a video of the entire interview, for which I regrettably do not have a transcript.

There were so many good moments during the interview, like this one and this one, but I want to highlight the section in which Clinton talks about Putin and Russian election interference, because it's so smart and so right—and because she and her campaign (and many of her supporters, ahem) were way the hell ahead of the curve in talking about this stuff last summer. She deserves credit for being both authoritative on this subject and courageous for hammering away at it, including calling Trump a puppet of Putin right to his goddamned face during a debate.

So, here is Hillary Clinton, the person who should have been our president, on Putin.

NICK KRISTOF: Do you think that there was collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin?

HILLARY CLINTON: I think that is what this investigation should look at. I'm hopeful that the Congress will pull together and realize that, because of the success that the Kremlin feels that it had, they're not going to go away. So, whatever party you are, whatever business you run, whatever kinds of concerns you have, if we don't take action together to hold whoever was involved accountable, they will be back, time and time again.

Look, from my perspective, I know Putin. I actually have sat with him, much as I'm sitting with you, Nick, and, you know, this is somebody who plays the long game. He plays three-dimensional chess; he's always trying to figure out how to advantage himself, his oligarchic companions, and his country. In that order. And, so, he is very much focused on destabilizing Europe, NATO, the United States—democracies. Real democracies.

And, you know, people have asked me, "Why do you think he did that to you?" And, you know, I don't—I don't think it's too complicated. I think he had his desire to destabilize us and others, and, you know, he's not exactly fond of strong women. So, you add that together, and that's pretty much— [applause]

Although he did shake hands with me! [smiles; Kristof laughs; the audience cheers and applauds]
So, so good.

And let us never forget that one of the major pieces—if not the most significant—of Putin's grudge against Hillary Clinton was that she is a champion of democracy and was an unyielding critic of Putin's subversion of democracy in Russia during her time as Secretary of State.

In order to defeat her, he proved her right.

And she is right about him still.

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