Clinton criticizes lax campaign finance laws between two L.A.-area fundraisers

In between attending two Los Angeles-area fundraisers, Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton railed against the laxness of campaign finance laws on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!"

"We have to raise money. I raise a lot of money at events and I raise a lot of money online, but there should not be these huge loopholes for corporations and billionaires to just put as much money as they want to and not even have to tell you who it comes from or really disclose very much at all,” Clinton told Kimmel, arguing that Citizens United, the Supreme Court decision that weakened campaign finance laws, must be overturned. "It is wrong."

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Clinton's position was not new, but her statement occurred the same day that she headlined fundraisers in Santa Monica and Hollywood, and the same day Politico reported that a couple could buy seats at the head table at a Clinton Bay Area fundraiser next month alongside George and Amal Clooney by contributing or raising $353,400 for various Democratic groups.

Clinton was on the second day of a two-day trip to California. She held a homeland security forum at USC earlier in the day, when she pledged to campaign vigorously ahead of the state’s June 7 primary.

"California will be the final word on the nominating process for both sides, and I’m going to work as hard as I possibly can to do well here, reaching out to every part of the state, every voter in it,” she told reporters after the event. "Because not only do I value California’s important role as the exclamation point on the primary nominating process, but it’s important to get ready and organized for the fall election, where so much is at stake for our country."

During the Kimmel appearance, Clinton defended her husband, former President Clinton, for a statement this week that appeared to criticize President Obama’s tenure.

"If you believe we've finally come to the point where we can put the awful legacy of the last eight years behind us and the seven years before that where we were practicing trickle-down economics, then you should vote for her," the former president said Monday in Spokane, Wash.

Asked by Kimmel whether those remarks were “a shot” at Obama, Clinton replied: "It wasn’t. It was obviously not. I mean, he nominated President Obama for his second term and we are both very proud supporters of President Obama.

"But what it was was the recognition that President Obama, who I think doesn’t get the credit he deserves for getting as much done in our country, has faced this implacable wall of hostility from the Republicans," she said, citing the Senate's refusal to consider Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court.

There were several lighthearted moments in the interview, such as when Kimmel told Clinton that her campaign slogans were not as good as rival Bernie Sanders' “Feel the Bern.” The late-night host offered some alternatives printed on T-shirts, bumper stickers and buttons: “You Be Hillin'," “Hillin Like a Villain,” “Take a Hill Pill,” “Netflix and Hill” and “Hillary Rod-DAMN.”

“I love it that people make up slogans,” Clinton said.

Clinton’s appearance concluded with a satirical segment where Kimmel told her he could be her “secret weapon” to winning the presidential campaign, and asked her whether she knew what “mansplaining” was.

“That’s when a man explains something to a woman in a patronizing way,” Clinton said.
Kimmel replied: “Actually, it’s when a man explains something to a woman in a condescending way. But you were close. So mansplaining is a way that we men can help women be better.”

Kimmel asked her to deliver lines from her stump speech, and criticized her blue pantsuit, the level of her smile and the modulation of her voice – too loud and shrill, then too meek.

“Your comments are kind of contradictory,” Clinton said. “It’s like nothing I ever do is right.”

Kimmel agreed. “Exactly. You’re not doing it right. I can’t quite put my finger on it. But something is, you’re not, umm …”

“A man?” Clinton interjected.

“Yes, that is it! You’re not a man!” Kimmel concluded. “But that was really cute the way you did it though.” 

seema.mehta@latimes.com

For the latest 2016 campaign news, follow @LATSeema on Twitter.

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