Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton indirectly blasted President Donald Trump during a commencement speech at her Alma Mater.
While Clinton did not mention her 2016 presidential election opponent by name, she pointedly spoke of the scandals that plagued former President Richard Nixon and his eventual impeachment (video below).
On May 26, Clinton delivered a commencement speech to the graduating class of Wellesley College in Massachusetts. The former secretary of state had graduated from the all-female school in 1969, CNN reports.
Clinton used disarming humor to address her loss in the 2016 presidential election, telling the graduates that she coped with the defeat with wine.
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"Long walks in the woods," she said. "Organizing my closets. Chardonnay helped a little too."
Clinton did not directly comment on the Trump administration, but offered an indirect critique of her victorious opponent by describing the angst she and her peers had felt about Nixon's election in the same year she had graduated.
"We were furious about the past presidential election of a man whose presidency would eventually end in disgrace with his impeachment for obstruction of justice, after firing the person running the investigation into him at the Department of Justice," Clinton said of Nixon.
The loaded comparison to recent events was not lost on the graduates, who reportedly erupted in applause.
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On May 9, Trump dismissed FBI Director James Comey. The White House initially asserted that Trump fired Comey because of how he handled the investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server. However, the move drew criticism because the bureau director had been heading the federal probe into whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Russian officials to subvert the 2016 presidential race, according to The Washington Post.
It was later disclosed that Comey had written a memo detailing a meeting between him and Trump on Feb. 14, during which Trump had allegedly asked the FBI director to drop the investigation into former White House National Security Adviser Michael Flynn -- a move the president's critics have asserted was an obstruction of justice.
On the same day that Clinton delivered her commencement address, a New York Magazine profile of her post-election life revealed her further thoughts on Comey’s firing.
"I am less surprised than I am worried," Clinton said of the FBI director's dismissal. “Not that he shouldn’t have been disciplined ... Having said that, I think what's going on now is an effort to derail and bury the Russia inquiry, and I think that's terrible for our country.”
The former secretary of state hoped Comey's firing would bring more scrutiny to the Russia inquiry and "raise enough questions in the minds of Republicans for them to conclude that it is worthy of careful attention, because left unchecked ... this will not just bite Democrats ... this will undermine our electoral system."
Clinton concluded her commencement address by urging the graduates to become politically active.
"Get to know your elected officials," Clinton said, CNN reports. "If you disagree with them, ask questions. Challenge them. Better yet -- run for office yourself, some day. In the years to come, there will be trolls galore, online and in person ... They may even call you a nasty woman ... So go forth, be great, but first, graduate."