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Clinton previews economic themes of possible 2016 campaign

March 24, 2015

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton, approaching a likely presidential bid announcement next month, offered a preview Monday of economics themes she is likely to address in a campaign.

Her appearance at the Center for American Progress, a Democratic think tank founded by allies of her husband, former President Bill Clinton, offered no new clues on the timing of her announcement, but plenty of presidential atmospherics. She was joined by Housing Secretary Julian Castro, considered a potential running mate for Clinton by some Democrats, and the heads of a public workers union and teachers union, two of Clinton’s most ardent labor allies.

Her appearance came as Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a staunch conservative, seized the day’s political headlines by becoming the first candidate to formally enter what is expected to be a crowded race for the Republican Party’s 2016 presidential nomination. Clinton, a former secretary of state, is the overwhelmingl favorite for the Democratic nod.

At her event, Clinton said income inequality and wage stagnation are problems that go hand-in-hand and the U.S. needs creative solutions to bolster job opportunities and living conditions in the cities.

Clinton cited the benefits of partnerships between the private and public sectors and updated policies to improve social mobility.

Many Democrats support boosting wages and household income and argue that many families have yet to benefit from an improving job market. Liberals, led most visibly by Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, say the party has become too intertwined with Wall Street and needs bold strategies to address inequality.

Also on Monday, Clinton met with President Barack Obama at the White House for about an hour. She posted a message on Twitter praising Obama’s health care law and its provisions aimed at covering young people and those with pre-existing conditions.

In a jab at Republicans who want to get rid of the law, she wrote: “Repeal those things? Embrace them!”

Clinton ended the day at an awards ceremony honoring the legacy of Robin Toner, the first woman to serve as national political correspondent for The New York Times. Toner, who died in December 2008, covered Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign and the Clinton White House.

Hillary Clinton joked that her relationship with the media “has been at times, shall we say, complicated.” She quipped that she was all about “new beginnings,” including a new grandchild, “another new hairstyle” and a “new email account.” She did not take questions from reporters at the event.

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