Senate Democrats

Reid Statement on Confirmation of Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State

Washington, DC—Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made the following statement today on the floor of the U.S. Senate before the body voted to confirm Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State: 

“Today we will move to a vote on the nomination of Senator Hillary Clinton for Secretary of State.  Senator Clinton is uniquely capable and profoundly prepared to lead our State Department at a time of unprecedented global challenges, and a time when quick confirmation of President Obama’s national security team is critical to protect us here at home.

“We face two wars abroad, a complex and unpredictable crisis in the Middle East, the nuclear ambitions of a volatile Iranian regime, together with the complexities of dealing with North Korea.

“Senator Clinton has earned the admiration and respect of the global community with her understanding that our international power must be both strong and smart – that the true measure of our influence is not just the size and strength of our military, but also how we use other tools, including diplomacy and foreign assistance, to make the world safer and more free.

“Senator Clinton’s exemplary qualifications and wise world-view were demonstrated in her confirmation hearings, where she showed a tremendous breadth and depth of knowledge on the major foreign policy issues we face.

“Many of us remember Hillary Clinton’s arrival in the Senate eight short years ago.  Some wondered whether a former First Lady who had become a favored target of the right could forge the relationships necessary to be an effective Senator for the people of New York State.  Some questioned whether a person of such national and international acclaim would put in the time to get to know the inner workings of the Senate and the nitty-gritty of the legislative process.

“It took no time for Senator Clinton to make believers from those doubters.  She became an instant favorite of Democrats and Republicans, a forceful advocate for smart foreign and domestic policies, and a remarkably effective student of bipartisanship.

“In her time as First Lady, serving as an American emissary to the world, and then in the United States Senate as a member of the Armed Services Committee, Hillary Clinton built the diplomatic skills and breadth of knowledge we need in our next Secretary of State.

“All but one member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted to approve this outstanding nominee.  Republicans and Democrats alike stand in support of our friend and colleague, Senator Clinton.

“I ask all of my colleagues to join me in sending the world a clear message that we stand behind President Obama and our new Secretary of State as they proceed together to the task of rebuilding our foreign policy to be stronger, smarter and more able to effectively lead the world with moral strength once again.”