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Last Updated: May 19, 2007 - 1:28:39 PM
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Hillary's mystery: Who are the 'evil men'?
Jan 30, 2007 - 12:59:31 PM
Iowa is a key battleground because the Republican and Democratic parties will hold their first preference votes for presidential candidates in the Midwestern farm state in January 2008.

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[RxPG] Washington, Jan 30 - Hillary Clinton says her experience in dealing with 'evil and bad men' would help her as president. At least as intriguing for many Americans is exactly which men she had in mind.

The Democratic Party senator's quip drew a roar of laughter from several hundred voters in the central state of Iowa, where the wife of former president Bill Clinton tested her appeal for a run for the White House in 2008 over the weekend.

Pressed by reporters for an explanation, Hillary Clinton brushed off the suggestion that she meant her husband, who had an affair with a female intern while he was in the White House.

US media speculated she may also have meant Newt Gingrich, a former Republican speaker of the US House of Representatives who battled the Clinton White House's political agenda, or Kenneth Starr, a special prosecutor appointed in 1994 who investigated Clinton's financial dealings and later his sex life.

Or maybe she meant US President George W. Bush, whose war policy in Iraq she branded 'the height of irresponsibility' during her swing through Iowa.

Clinton wasn't saying. But in widely televised comments to reporters, the New York senator - often portrayed as cool and bookish - acknowledged she had joked about a serious topic.

'I thought I was funny. You know, you guys keep telling me, 'Lighten up, be funny.' So I get a little funny and now I'm being psychoanalysed,' Clinton, 59, said in mock frustration.

Hillary's mystery moment came when a member of the audience in Davenport, Iowa, asked what experiences had prepared her for dealing with the world's nasty men.

She mentioned Osama bin Laden. Then, after pausing for dramatic effect, she gleefully repeated the man's question: 'What in my background equips me to deal with evil and bad men?'

Clinton flashed a seemingly knowing smile and the audience clapped and cheered. Later, she also gave her first indication that Bill Clinton would play a role in her campaign.

'I will certainly look for ways to employ the skills and talents of former presidents, most especially my husband,' Clinton said.

Iowa is a key battleground because the Republican and Democratic parties will hold their first preference votes for presidential candidates in the Midwestern farm state in January 2008.

The so-called Iowa caucuses kick off a series of primary elections across the nation to determine the two contenders for the White House.

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