On June 7, 2008, Democratic Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York delivered a famous concession speech conceding the party nomination to future President Barack Obama. Exactly eight years later on June 7, 2016, Clinton delivered a speech celebrating her status as the first woman to become a presidential nominee (video below).
On June 7, Clinton all but officially secured the Democratic party nomination, becoming the first woman to become a major party standard bearer heading into a general election.
After winning the primary contests in California, New Jersey, New Mexico and South Dakota, Clinton now has 2,191 pledged delegates while her competitor, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, only has 1,816. Factoring in superdelegates, Clinton has clinched the party's nomination.
Taking to the stage at a rally held in Brooklyn, New York, Clinton celebrated the historical milestone of breaking the gender barrier. She riffed on her famous statement on the glass ceiling she had made in her 2008 concession speech.
"Although we weren’t able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it’s got about 18 million cracks in it, and the light is shining through like never before, filling us all with hope and sure knowledge that the path will be a little easier next time,” Clinton had assured her disappointed supporters in 2008, according to The Guardian.
Now standing as the presumptive nominee of the 2016 Democratic primary, Clinton was able to give a conclusion to her famous statement.
"It may be hard to see tonight, but we’re all standing under a glass ceiling right now," Clinton told her supporters, according to Vox. "But don’t worry. We’re not smashing this one. Thanks to you, we’ve reached a milestone."
Clinton attributed the history-making achievement to the hard work of activists in the 19th and 20th centuries lobbying hard for women’s suffrage. She later noted that her own mother, who passed away in 2011, was born on the same day that Congress passed the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote.
The former Secretary of State congratulated Sanders “for the extraordinary campaign he has run. He has spent his long career in public service fighting for progressive causes and principles and he’s excited millions of voters, especially young people.”
While Clinton was congratulatory towards Sanders, she aimed her ire at her general election opponent, Republican nominee Donald Trump.
“[Make America Great Again is code for] let’s take America backwards,” Clinton said of Trump's campaign slogan. “Back to a time when opportunity were reserved for some, not all. Promising his supporters an economy he cannot re-create.”
After accusing Trump of being both bigoted and temperamentally unfit for the White House, Clinton pivoted to the personal. She talked about her mother, “the biggest influence in my life.”
Noting that June 4 would have been her mother’s 97th birthday, Clinton told the audience that she wished that her mother “could see her daughter become the Democratic Party’s nominee.”
Clinton concluded her speech by asking her supporters to be prepared to make the case “if we stand together, we will rise together.”
Social media was abuzz with women across America celebrating the historic moment, The Huffington Post reports.
“Tear streaming down my face, on behalf of all those women who came before, and on behalf of all who will come behind,” Jennifer Granholm tweeted.
Emma Gray tweeted out, “We are allowed to revel in this moment 227 years in the making.”
“To every little girl who wants to be president when she grows up,” tweeted Alanna Vagianos, including a screenshot of Clinton’s speech. “Here’s proof you can do it.”
Stephanie Zawistowski tweeted out, “Just kissed my sleeping daughters and told them, ‘we did it.’”