With a recent series of highly compensated speeches to wealthy and influential groups, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (shown) has unofficially but effectively launched her 2016 presidential campaign. In July Clinton spoke to Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, a $40 billion international private equity firm, followed by another to the $31 billion international asset manager Carlyle Group in September. On October 24 and then again on October 29, she addressed conferences sponsored by the international banking firm Goldman Sachs. At $200,000 per speech, Clinton has raked in nearly a million dollars in two months.

This coincides with an alleged slip of the tongue that occurred on September 13when Clinton was being awarded an honorary degree from St. Andrew’s University. She was asked the inevitable question about whether she was going to run in 2016 for the presidency of the United States, and she initially responded with her usual answer: “I haven’t made up my mind yet.” But when guests joked that that response was unsatisfactory, she added: “Yes, it is unsatisfactory … I’m minded to do it.”

Then she formalized her re-entry into politics on Saturday, October 19, when she attended a rally in Virginia for Democratic governor candidate Terry McAuliffe. She used that occasion to begin to practice her sound bytes for her campaign:

Recently in Washington unfortunately we’ve seen examples of the wrong kind of leadership. When politicians choose scorched earth over common ground … when they operate in what I call the “evidence-free” zone [of] ideology trumping everything else … that’s not the kind of leadership we need in America today.

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