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Mrs. Clinton Appears on Letterman

January 13, 2000

NEW YORK (AP) _ Quipping that she finally agreed to take the hot seat next to David Letterman because she lost a bet with Tipper Gore, a nervous Hillary Rodham Clinton was a pretty good match for the late-night host on Wednesday.

The first lady made her first visit to the ``Late Show,″ after the host had spent weeks making a running gag of her plan to run for Senate in New York. Letterman has called Mrs. Clinton a carpetbagger from Arkansas seeking political opportunity in New York.

Confronted with the first lady in the flesh, Letterman at first set aside his trademark sarcasm and lobbed her a softball, asking her to ``tell us about yourself.″

Mrs. Clinton smirked and told Letterman she grew up in the Midwest _ as he did _ has a mother named Dorothy _ as he does _ and just couldn’t resist the temptation to follow him to New York.

Mrs. Clinton’s likely Senate opponent, Republican New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, has been on the show nearly 20 times, chatting up Letterman about the New York Yankees, Mrs. Clinton and life in New York. He’s even gotten some laughs in a few comedy skits.

Mrs. Clinton admitted to being ``just a little″ nervous, but told Letterman: ``I knew if I was going to run for Senate, I was going to have to come and sit in this chair and talk to the big guy.″

She aced Letterman’s New York quiz, correctly identifying the state bird (bluebird) and the state tree (sugar maple).

Her top 10 reasons for appearing on the show included: ``I lost a bet with Tipper″ and ``If Dan Quayle did it, how hard could it be?″

The show was to air Wednesday night at 11:30 EST.

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