What Young Feminists Think of Hillary Clinton

It’s not quite what you’d expect.

This illustration can only be used with the Molly Mirhashem piece that originally ran in the 5/16/2015 issue of National Journal magazine.
National Journal
May 15, 2015, 1:01 a.m.

Al­ex­an­dra Svokos was six years old, grow­ing up in Frank­lin Lakes, New Jer­sey, when she be­came a Hil­lary Clin­ton fan. It was 1998, and Clin­ton had pub­lished Dear Socks, Dear Buddy, a col­lec­tion of chil­dren’s let­ters ad­dressed to the first fam­ily’s pets. Svokos be­came so ob­sessed with the book, she re­calls, that she wrote her own let­ter—not to Socks the cat or Buddy the Lab­rador, but to Clin­ton her­self. When she got a reply on of­fi­cial White House sta­tion­ery with the first lady’s sig­na­ture, Svokos was thrilled.

Clin­ton was an early fem­in­ist icon for many wo­men of Svokos’s gen­er­a­tion—long be­fore they even began to think of them­selves as fem­in­ists. Svokos, who’s now 23 and a fel­low at The Huff­ing­ton Post, grew up with par­ents who called them­selves fem­in­ists and prac­ticed gender equal­ity in the house, bal­an­cing house­hold re­spons­ib­il­it­ies and en­cour­aging Svokos and her two sis­ters to “fight for what we de­served.” Mostly, she says, fem­in­ism meant “girl power” to her—and that meant, in turn, root­ing for Clin­ton when she made her first run for the pres­id­ency in 2008. Svokos was in high school then, and her ideas about fem­in­ism were still pretty simple; she ad­mired Clin­ton “be­cause she was a wo­man, rather than know­ing much about what she stood for.”

Eight years later, Svokos’s no­tion of fem­in­ism has evolved—and the pro­spect of Hil­lary Clin­ton be­com­ing pres­id­ent no longer fills her with un­bridled ex­cite­ment. Svokos says her ideas about fem­in­ism began to change when she stud­ied eco­nom­ics at Columbia Uni­versity, be­gin­ning in 2010. As she learned about eco­nom­ic in­equal­ity in the United States and around the world, she says, she began to see how gender, race, and class were in­ter­twined—how, for in­stance, ex­pand­ing ac­cess to birth con­trol can stim­u­late an eco­nomy by en­abling wo­men to pur­sue their own ca­reers.

Fem­in­ism came to mean something very dif­fer­ent from girl power. And Hil­lary Clin­ton came to look like the sym­bol of an older gen­er­a­tion of wo­men more con­cerned with fe­male em­power­ment—in par­tic­u­lar, with white, middle-class, Amer­ic­an fe­male em­power­ment—than with broad­er is­sues of so­cial and eco­nom­ic justice. Svokos says she’ll vote for Clin­ton in 2016, but she’s not ex­pect­ing her to make so­cial justice and in­equal­ity true pri­or­it­ies if she makes it to the White House. “I find her lack­ing, in that I real­ize she’s not likely to push for the kind of change I’d like to see,” Svokos says. “At the same time, though, I be­lieve she knows how to man­age polit­ics and will be more than cap­able in the po­s­i­tion.”

(RE­LATED: The Rise of Hil­lary Clin­ton)

Among fem­in­ists of her gen­er­a­tion, Svokos is hardly alone in her luke­warm feel­ings about Hil­lary Clin­ton’s pres­id­en­tial bid. I re­cently in­ter­viewed 47 young wo­men, most in their early to mid-20s, who call them­selves fem­in­ists; they talked about what fem­in­ism means to them and shared their thoughts about Clin­ton’s can­did­acy and pub­lic im­age. While the over­whelm­ing ma­jor­ity of these wo­men said they would likely vote for her in 2016, only about a quarter of them were en­thu­si­ast­ic or em­phat­ic in their sup­port. Jen­nifer Schaf­fer, a 22-year-old week­end ed­it­or at Vice, summed up a com­mon sen­ti­ment among these wo­men: “I’m glad we have a fe­male pres­id­en­tial can­did­ate,” she told me, “but it’s in­cred­ibly dif­fi­cult to get ex­cited about something that should have happened dec­ades ago.” A vote for Clin­ton, many said, would be a vote by de­fault, be­cause no oth­er vi­able pro­gress­ive al­tern­at­ives—fe­male or male—are in the off­ing.

While it’s not ex­actly news that Clin­ton is a less-than-ideal can­did­ate for many on the Left, the cri­tique of her from those on the van­guard of con­tem­por­ary fem­in­ism is more sur­pris­ing—and po­ten­tially prob­lem­at­ic for her pres­id­en­tial ef­fort. To win in 2016, Clin­ton doesn’t just need half-hearted sup­port from young wo­men; she needs them to be a base of her grass­roots ef­forts, as fired up as young people were for Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. But even as more and more young wo­men are em­bra­cing the “fem­in­ist” la­bel—with pop-cul­ture icons like Bey­on­cé mak­ing it cent­ral to their pub­lic per­so­nas—the fem­in­ism that Clin­ton rep­res­ents seems in­creas­ingly out­moded. While her cam­paign banks on young fem­in­ists like Svokos and Schaf­fer be­ing “Ready for Hil­lary,” these wo­men say they’re ready for more.

Former Sec­ret­ary of State Hil­lary Clin­ton speaks to U.S. Em­bassy em­ploy­ees in Athens, Greece, on Ju­ly 18, 2011. (Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Im­ages)

HIL­LARY CLIN­TON came of age dur­ing the peak years of second-wave fem­in­ism. The first wave began in the mid-1800s, with wo­men’s suf­frage as the goal; the second stretched from the 1960s to the early 1980s, and fo­cused on re­pro­duct­ive and work­place rights. Writer and act­iv­ist Betty Friedan is usu­ally cred­ited with cata­lyz­ing the second wave with The Fem­in­ine Mys­tique. Pub­lished in 1963, the land­mark book called for wo­men’s lib­er­a­tion from house­work, with Friedan fam­ously writ­ing: “We can no longer ig­nore that voice with­in wo­men that says: ‘I want something more than my hus­band and my chil­dren and my house.‘“Š”

(RE­LATED: Why Hil­lary Clin­ton Doesn’t Need Amer­ic­ans to Trust Her)

As the fem­in­ism of Friedan and second-wave stal­warts like Glor­ia Steinem moved in­to the main­stream, some began to cri­ti­cize it as a move­ment tailored to white wo­men of means. Who, they asked, would clean the homes and care for the chil­dren of Friedan’s lib­er­ated middle-class house­wives? Where was their lib­er­a­tion? Such ques­tions fed in­to a lar­ger cri­tique of second-wave fem­in­ism: that it saw white Amer­ic­an wo­men’s con­cerns as rep­res­ent­ing those of all wo­men.

In 1989, a term emerged for a fem­in­ist philo­sophy that would in­clude wo­men of col­or and oth­er mar­gin­al­ized groups: “in­ter­sec­tion­al­ity.” To the un­ini­ti­ated, the word might sound like un­wieldy aca­dem­ic jar­gon. But without my bring­ing it up, many of the wo­men I spoke to said in­ter­sec­tion­al­ity was the found­a­tion of their fem­in­ism—and of their skep­ti­cism about Clin­ton. First coined by leg­al schol­ar and pro­fess­or Kim­ber­lé Cren­shaw, the word refers to the con­nec­tions (the “in­ter­sec­tions”) between dif­fer­ent sys­tems of op­pres­sion—not just sex­ism, but also ra­cism, ho­mo­pho­bia, trans­pho­bia, and classism. It’s a re­cog­ni­tion that a black wo­man, for in­stance, is not af­fected in­de­pend­ently by ra­cism and sex­ism—those forms of dis­crim­in­a­tion are in­ex­tric­ably linked, which makes her ex­per­i­ence sex­ism dif­fer­ently from a white wo­man and ra­cism dif­fer­ently from a black man.

(RE­LATED: NPR’s Michel Mar­tin on Bal­an­cing Work and Fam­ily As a Wo­man of Col­or

The concept it­self was far from new; it stretched as far back, at least, as So­journ­er Truth’s fam­ous “Ain’t I a Wo­man?” speech in 1851, in which she high­lighted the dra­mat­ic dif­fer­ences between the ways black and white wo­men ex­per­i­ence sex­ism. “That man over there says that wo­men need to be helped in­to car­riages and lif­ted over ditches, and to have the best place every­where,” Truth said. “Nobody ever helps me in­to car­riages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain’t I a wo­man?”

“I think it’s prob­lem­at­ic to as­sume that just be­cause she’s a wo­man, she’s the best spokes­per­son for all wo­men.”

Now the idea had a name. But in the 1990s, as in­ter­sec­tion­al­ity was gain­ing pop­ular­ity in aca­dem­ic circles, Hil­lary Clin­ton was bring­ing her own, more tra­di­tion­al brand of fem­in­ism to her role as first lady. Her do­mest­ic ini­ti­at­ives in­cluded ad­op­tion, foster care, and child care. In 1995, Clin­ton gave her fam­ous Beijing speech to the United Na­tions’ Fourth World Con­fer­ence on Wo­men, de­clar­ing that “wo­men’s rights are hu­man rights.” She helped to form the Justice De­part­ment’s Vi­ol­ence Against Wo­men Of­fice and partnered with then—Sec­ret­ary of State Madeleine Al­bright to found the Vi­tal Voices Demo­cracy Ini­ti­at­ive, a series of con­fer­ences de­voted to pro­mot­ing fe­male lead­ers and in­volving wo­men around the globe in polit­ics.

In the early and mid-2000s, after she left the White House and took up res­id­ence in the U.S. Sen­ate, Clin­ton largely shif­ted away from a wo­men-centered agenda as she worked to bol­ster her pres­id­en­tial résumé. At the same time, young blog­gers like Lauren Bruce (Fem­in­iste) and Jes­sica Valenti (Fem­in­ist­ing) were bring­ing fem­in­ist the­ory out of the Ivory Tower. “Each month seemed to bring a new site with fem­in­ist con­tent,” Re­becca Tra­ister writes in her 2010 book, Big Girls Don’t Cry. “At vari­ous points there were about six sites call­ing them­selves The F-Word.”

So­cial me­dia changed the land­scape of fem­in­ism. Young wo­men who might not learn about fem­in­ism in their schools or com­munit­ies could find primers on Tumblr blogs with names like in­ter­sec­tion­al fem­in­ism 101. Their fem­in­ist awaken­ings thus in­volved, from the start, de­bates about second-wave fem­in­ism’s per­ceived fail­ures of in­clus­iv­ity. “Any­one who entered the fem­in­ist con­ver­sa­tion in the In­ter­net age has im­me­di­ate ac­cess to not only re­search about those fail­ures, but also to a lot of the con­ver­sa­tions about them,” says fem­in­ist or­gan­izer and writer Shelby Knox, who’s 28. “The bar­ri­ers are a lot lower for par­ti­cip­a­tion in the move­ment.”

(RE­LATED: Celebrit­ies Who Have Already En­dorsed Hil­lary Clin­ton for Pres­id­ent)

Young wo­men could now do more than read about fem­in­ist is­sues and dis­cuss them in class; they could find com­munit­ies of wo­men on Twit­ter or Tumblr whose ex­per­i­ences they could re­late to—or who could open up new vis­tas for them on what oth­er wo­men’s lives are like. They could par­ti­cip­ate in the cre­ation of a new fem­in­ism—one that would be a far cry from Friedan’s. By 2011, the writer Flavia Dzodan was fam­ously de­clar­ing on her blog: “My fem­in­ism will be in­ter­sec­tion­al or it will be bull­shit.” Her words be­came a ral­ly­ing cry.

As young wo­men’s no­tions of fem­in­ism evolved and broadened, so did their idea of what con­sti­tutes “wo­men’s is­sues” in the polit­ic­al arena. “If you’re tak­ing in­ter­sec­tion­al­ity as the found­a­tion of this kind of fem­in­ism, you wouldn’t just be con­cerned with how any par­tic­u­lar policy is­sue is af­fect­ing wo­men,” says Gwen­dolyn Beetham, dir­ect­or of the Glob­al Vil­lage at Dou­glass Res­id­en­tial Col­lege, the wo­men’s res­id­en­tial col­lege af­fil­i­ated with Rut­gers Uni­versity. “But you would be ask­ing, ‘Which wo­men, and how?’ And you would be ask­ing this wheth­er or not you are a mem­ber of one of those groups.”

To young wo­men like Sylvie Ed­man, a 20-year-old stu­dent at the Uni­versity of Mas­sachu­setts, Am­h­erst, Clin­ton em­bod­ies “cor­por­ate fem­in­ism,” which Ed­man defines con­cisely: “It’s em­power­ing wo­men who are already power­ful.” Clin­ton and Sheryl Sand­berg, the Face­book COO and au­thor of Lean In, are of­ten name-dropped in this con­text; while they ex­per­i­ence sex­ism, the think­ing goes, they’ve been able to dare greatly be­cause of their race and class—while be­ing helped along the way by work­ing-class wo­men and wo­men of col­or who didn’t have the same op­por­tun­it­ies.

Some of the con­cerns raised by the wo­men I spoke to about Clin­ton were tra­di­tion­al “wo­men’s is­sues” like re­pro­duct­ive justice and equal pay. But just as many brought up po­lice bru­tal­ity, crim­in­al-justice re­form, and en­vir­on­ment­al is­sues as primary con­cerns—and as in­teg­ral to what they mean by “fem­in­ism.” Some of the most com­monly ex­pressed cri­tiques of Clin­ton echoed those of many left-of-cen­ter Amer­ic­ans: She’s “hawk­ish” on for­eign af­fairs, “part of a polit­ic­al dyn­asty,” and simply “not very pro­gress­ive.” Col­li­er Mey­er­son, who writes for the web­site Fu­sion, told me that her ideal can­did­ate “wouldn’t be part of a leg­acy, and wouldn’t be a ca­reer politi­cian.” A can­did­ate more like Barack Obama—”some­body who is rooted more in com­munity-or­gan­iz­ing”—would fit the bill bet­ter, Mey­er­son says.

(RE­LATED: A Uni­fied The­ory of Hil­lary Clin­ton)

Aye­sha Sid­diqi, the 24-year-old ed­it­or-in-chief of the on­line magazine The New In­quiry, says that this range of con­cerns should be no sur­prise. “Fem­in­ist is­sues,” she says, “are no more com­plic­ated than the is­sues of people’s lives.” But that philo­sophy makes young wo­men’s views of Clin­ton—and her cam­paign’s ef­forts to gal­van­ize them be­hind her—very com­plic­ated in­deed.

At April’s Wo­men in the World sum­mit, Clin­ton talked about in­equit­ies in what wo­men are paid, tak­ing care to note the “even wider gaps for wo­men of col­or.” Will such rhet­or­ic speak to young fem­in­ists’ con­cerns that she’s a clas­sic “cor­por­ate fem­in­ist”? (An­drew Bur­ton/Getty Im­ages)

AT THE AN­NU­AL Wo­men in the World Sum­mit in New York this April, Sam Viqueira stuck out from the crowd. The sum­mit, a high-powered gath­er­ing of lead­ers and act­iv­ists launched by former New York­er and Daily Beast ed­it­or Tina Brown in 2010, this year fea­tured a key­note ad­dress by Hil­lary Clin­ton. Most of the wo­men in at­tend­ance looked like Clin­ton’s crowd, her gen­er­a­tion: Dressed busi­ness cas­u­al, the mostly middle-aged wo­men flocked to the free cof­fee and Luna bars on of­fer, chat­ted in small groups, and snapped selfies in front of a Dove-sponsored back­drop. The 17-year-old Viqueira and her high school friend stood off to the side in a small lounge, look­ing like they were dressed for a reg­u­lar day of school. They’d taken the train in from Maple­wood, New Jer­sey. “To me, fem­in­ism isn’t only about want­ing equal­ity for all genders,” Viqueira told me later, “but want­ing and ad­voc­at­ing for the equal­ity of all op­pressed groups, which can and do in­ter­sect.”

In some re­spects, Viqueira ex­em­pli­fies the rising gen­er­a­tion of fem­in­ists—and their con­flic­ted feel­ings about Clin­ton. She grew up with three sis­ters and par­ents who were big on wo­men’s em­power­ment, en­cour­aging the girls to play sports and study math and sci­ence. But she cred­its so­cial me­dia with teach­ing her about the in­ter­sec­tion of race and gender, and the is­sues wo­men face out­side of the United States; she first read the term “in­ter­sec­tion­al­ity” on­line when she was just 15 and now fol­lows a lot of young wo­men on Twit­ter who help broaden her per­spect­ive.

This spring, she’s tak­ing the first gender-stud­ies class ever offered at her pub­lic high school. Next fall, Viqueira will be old enough to cast her first vote. That has led her, like so many oth­er young fem­in­ists, to think long and hard about what Clin­ton would—and wouldn’t—rep­res­ent as the first wo­man pres­id­ent. “It’s nice to see a strong fe­male can­did­ate run­ning for pres­id­ent,” Viqueira says, but she can’t help wish­ing it were a wo­man with a dif­fer­ent track re­cord. She’s par­tic­u­larly troubled by Clin­ton’s sup­port of the 1996 wel­fare-re­form bill her hus­band signed and of the Clin­ton-era crime-fight­ing le­gis­la­tion that, among oth­er things, lengthened pris­on sen­tences for drug of­fenses. At best, she says, Clin­ton has been in­con­sist­ent on so­cial-justice is­sues; at worst, she has been a hy­po­crite.

While Viqueira is hes­it­ant to say she’ll vote for Clin­ton, she ac­know­ledges that the lim­ited op­tions for pro­gress­ive-minded voters will prob­ably push her in that dir­ec­tion. But it both­ers her to see Clin­ton held up as a mod­el fem­in­ist: “I think it’s prob­lem­at­ic to as­sume that just be­cause she’s a wo­man, she’s the best spokes­per­son for all wo­men.”

While her deep résumé im­presses many young wo­men, Clin­ton has to grapple with past policies that are ana­thema to oth­ers. (Lu­is Acosta/AFP/Getty­Im­ages)

Clin­ton’s first pres­id­en­tial cam­paign re­lied heav­ily on that as­sump­tion. An in­tern­al cam­paign memo from March 2007, writ­ten by the cam­paign’s chief strategist and poll­ster, Mark Penn, and pub­lished in The At­lantic the fol­low­ing year, ad­vised Clin­ton thusly:

1) Start with a base of wo­men.a. For these wo­men, you rep­res­ent a break­ing of bar­ri­ers.b. The win­now­ing out of the most com­pet­ent and qual­i­fied in an un­fair, male-dom­in­ated world.c. The in­fu­sion of a wo­man and a moth­er’s sens­ib­il­it­ies in­to a world of war and neg­lect.

2) Add on a base of lower- and middle-class voters.a. You see them; you care about them.b. You were one of them, it is your  his­tory.c. You are all about their con­cerns (health care, edu­ca­tion, en­ergy, child care, col­lege, etc.).

For young fem­in­ists, Penn’s memo, and Clin­ton’s cam­paign, rep­res­en­ted the an­ti­thes­is of in­ter­sec­tion­al think­ing. The prob­lem isn’t merely the as­sump­tion that wo­men would be Clin­ton’s primary base be­cause of their gender alone; it’s also the fact that lower- and middle-class voters are item­ized as a sep­ar­ate group, with a dif­fer­ent (and far more spe­cif­ic) set of con­cerns from those of “wo­men.” “With strategies like this,” Tra­ister writes, “it was not un­just to sug­gest that one ser­i­ous prob­lem with the Clin­ton cam­paign lead­er­ship was that it did not think much of the wo­men with whom it was sup­posed to be mak­ing his­tory.” Tra­ister notes that “Penn as­sured Hil­lary that in­tern­al polling showed that 94% of young wo­men would auto­mat­ic­ally vote for the first fe­male pres­id­ent. It was per­haps this con­fid­ence that led him to shrug off con­cerns about reach­ing them.” In the end, ac­cord­ing to a CBS News poll, Penn’s ini­tial es­tim­ates were way off: 53 per­cent of young wo­men backed Obama over Clin­ton.

While these young wo­men, ral­ly­ing for Clin­ton in New York in April, are “Ready for Hil­lary,” oth­ers say they’re ready for more. (Spen­cer Platt/Getty Im­ages)

Far from a high-wa­ter mark for fem­in­ism, Sid­diqi, The New In­quiry ed­it­or, sees Clin­ton’s pres­id­en­tial cam­paigns as “the nadir of the ‘Lean In’ fem­in­ism mo­ment. This is what you get when that’s what your fem­in­ism looks like,” she says. “You don’t get a vic­tory that all wo­men can cel­eb­rate.”

OF COURSE, plenty of young wo­men will be cel­eb­rat­ing next Novem­ber if Hil­lary Clin­ton wins the pres­id­ency—in­clud­ing some who see them­selves rooted in “in­ter­sec­tion­al­ity.” Gab­ri­el Clarke, a 20-year-old mu­si­cian and stu­dent at Oak­wood Uni­versity in Alabama, says she had a wake-up mo­ment dur­ing protests over the shoot­ing of Mi­chael Brown last sum­mer in Fer­guson, Mis­souri. “A young wo­man grabbed the mi­cro­phone and said, ‘I am a wo­man, but be­fore I am a wo­man, I am black.’ And I was think­ing, that’s not how we have to look at these things. That’s not how we have to be. We have to un­der­stand that we are both of those things sim­ul­tan­eously.”

Wo­men of col­or like her­self have long been “on the back burn­er in the move­ment,” Clarke says. It’s a wel­come change that “people are start­ing to see that you can’t have a so­cial move­ment about equal­ity and leave out every­one else who’s not a white wo­man.” But in­ter­sec­tion­al think­ing hasn’t dimmed her pas­sion for elect­ing Clin­ton. The first time Clin­ton ran, Clarke was just 13. She had a hard time tak­ing the can­did­ate ser­i­ously, she says, be­cause of the me­dia’s re­lent­less fo­cus on her hair, clothes, and man­ner of speak­ing. But the sum­mer be­fore Clarke went off to col­lege in 2013, her im­pres­sion was changed by watch­ing the doc­u­ment­ary Miss Rep­res­ent­a­tion, which shines a crit­ic­al light on the way wo­men lead­ers are por­trayed by the me­dia. “It really opened my eyes and made me see Hil­lary in a totally dif­fer­ent way,” Clarke says. “They talked more about her pant­suits than her policies!”

Like most of the one-quarter of these young wo­men who told me they’re gung ho for Clin­ton, Clarke cites the can­did­ate’s ex­tens­ive ex­per­i­ence—the same ex­per­i­ence oth­ers use to knock her as a “ca­reer politi­cian”—as a prime factor in her sup­port. Clin­ton, says Clarke, is ob­vi­ously the most-qual­i­fied can­did­ate in the race. “But that’s the story of be­ing a wo­man,” she says. “You have to be ten times bet­ter than every­one else to even get your foot in the door.” Clarke real­izes that many fem­in­ists of col­or are “very skep­tic­al” of Clin­ton, won­der­ing “wheth­er she will really be a cham­pi­on or a voice for them, or only for white wo­men”—and she gets the skep­ti­cism. But to her, there’s something more fun­da­ment­al at stake: “I think that even her as a sym­bol for wo­men, that a wo­man can be pres­id­ent, is power­ful enough.”

This time around, the Clin­ton cam­paign isn’t tak­ing that kind of solid­ar­ity for gran­ted. Young fem­in­ists’ so­cial and eco­nom­ic views may have been over­looked in 2008, but in the early stages of Clin­ton’s second run, they’ve been front and cen­ter. You could hear it in her key­note at the Wo­men in the World Sum­mit, where Clin­ton talked about in­equit­ies in what wo­men are paid, tak­ing care to note the “even wider gaps for wo­men of col­or.” You could hear it in an­oth­er speech she re­cently gave in New York call­ing for po­lice re­form and in her fre­quent in­voc­a­tions of in­come in­equal­ity. “Amer­ic­ans have fought their way back from tough eco­nom­ic times,” Clin­ton said in the April video an­noun­cing her cam­paign. “But the deck is still stacked in fa­vor of those at the top.”

Such talk is wel­comed by Clin­ton skep­tics like Viqueira, the 17-year-old, who sees the can­did­ate “re­de­fin­ing her fem­in­ism to be all-in­clus­ive.” Col­li­er Mey­er­son says that Clin­ton’s an­nounce­ment video—which, as pun­dits noted, took pains to fea­ture just about every group of “mar­gin­al­ized” people in Amer­ica—was a clear at­tempt to reach people ig­nored dur­ing her 2008 cam­paign. “My hope is that she con­tin­ues with this thread,” Mey­er­son says, “and goes on to pull in people from dif­fer­ent so­cioeco­nom­ic classes, back­grounds, and races.”

By and large, these wo­men say they’ll need to see more evid­ence of Clin­ton’s new in­clus­ive­ness be­fore their am­bi­val­ent sup­port morphs in­to en­thu­si­asm. “So far, she’s hit on a lot of the things I’m pas­sion­ate about,” says Laura Brown, a 26-year-old fash­ion de­sign­er and seam­stress in Los Angeles. “I want to see her prove it. I want to know it’s genu­ine and not just part of the game.”


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