Hillary, Jeb in spotlight before Bush library dedication

Hillary, Jeb in spotlight before Bush library dedication
Thursday, April 25, 2013 - 8:58am

One day before the dedication of the President George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, two people considering runs for the White House in 2016 are giving speeches in the same city.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton addressed the National Multi Housing Council. The trade association, which represents apartment owners, developers and lenders, told CNN that Clinton would address around 350 people, speaking for about an hour, with a moderated question and answer conversation.

As Clinton spoke at the event--held at a resort in Irving, a city that borders Dallas-outside the building, Clinton supporters urging her to run for the White House in 2016 held a rally. That gathering was put together by the Ready for Hillary super PAC, which held similar events at recent Clinton speeches in New York and the nation's capital.

Mark York, one of the supporters holding a "Ready for Hillary" sign outside the event, said Clinton could be the candidate to turn Texas, long a red state in presidential elections, into a blue state.

"Once Texas goes blue, so goes the rest of the country," he said, adding Clinton would be "able to reach minorities, and turn out the Hispanic vote in Texas who have been silenced for so long."

Another supporter, Soyna Smith, said she had skipped her weekly Bible study group to cheer on Hillary.

"I'm ready for a woman to be in the White House. I love Hillary and the Clintons, they've done wonderful jobs over the years," she said.

"We want to let her know that we do support her in (running for president,)" Smith said.

The address is Clinton's first paid speech since stepping down as secretary of state earlier this year. Shortly after leaving the State Department, the former first lady, senator from New York, and 2008 Democratic presidential candidate, signed on with the Harry Walker Agency as her representative for speaking engagements.

While Clinton's representatives haven't given a figure on how much she's getting paid for Wednesday's address, she's considered a very highly sought speaker who could earn in the six-figure range per appearance.

Clinton's comments were closed to media. That request came from the Harry Walker Agency, but is considered standard in these types of arrangements.

A couple of hours before Clinton gave her address, former two-term Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who is mulling a bid for the GOP nomination, spoke in front of the World Affairs Council at a hotel in Dallas. His address was not closed to the media.

During his remarks, Bush addressed the ongoing immigration debate, which is also the topic of his recently released book "Immigration Wars."

Both Bush, the younger brother of George W. Bush, and Clinton, the wife of former President Bill Clinton, will attend the dedication Thursday of the George W. Bush Presidential Center at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. President Barack Obama and all four living former presidents (Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush) will be in attendance.

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