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Last time Julia Gillard was asked about the Hilary Clinton for President push she was "ambivalent about whether she should run"

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In July 2013 Fairfax's Stephanie Peatling wrote the following story - it's based on an interview Ms Gillard did with Ann Summers a few days before.  In that interview, Gillard was recollecting conversations she had with Hilary Clinton the year before - that is 2012 when President Obama was here in Australia.

It's interesting that at the time, Gillard was decidedly non-committal about the wisdom of Hilary Clinton standing for President in 2016.   It's also interesting to see how those two women handled the AWU allegations - which have now led to a Royal Commission and a finding that Gillard's home renovations were paid for by the slush fund operator Bruce Wilson - and that Gillard had confected a cover story about the source of the money.   It was simply taken as a given that the allegations must be false - why?   Apparently because Ms Gillard is a woman.

'You've got to stand up to it': what Hillary Clinton told Gillard on public scrutiny

July 5, 2013
Stephanie Peatling

 

Former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton told then prime minister Julia Gillard she had to stick up for herself in the face of events from her past being dredged up and used against her.

Ms Gillard and Mrs Clinton had a private meeting in Perth late last year which Ms Gillard recounted to journalist Anne Summers in a piece published on Friday afternoon.

In what would turn out to be Ms Gillard's last in-depth interview before she lost the prime ministership, she revealed to Dr Summers how she had spoken about the added pressure of being 'The First' with Barack Obama, and how Mrs Clinton had discussed with her the issue of being a high profile woman.

"We did have a discussion about where our media cycle was stuck then, which was this relentless opposition questioning about events the best part of 20 years ago," Ms Gillard said in the interview, which took place on June 10 this year.

At the time the pair met Ms Gillard was facing questions over her role in the AWU affair dating back to her time as a lawyer with Slater and Gordon in the 1990s.

Mrs Clinton told Ms Gillard that she had ''seen this movie before'', a reference to the questions the Clintons faced over the Whitewater development scandal.

Mrs Clinton offered Ms Gillard the following advice: "You've got to stand up to it and be clear about it and name it for what it is because the temptation is to say, 'Look this is so absurd, it'll die a death', whereas these things unfortunately don't die a death."

The then prime minister also revealed how she discussed race and gender with US President Barack Obama saying the two shared a bond based on their unique understanding of what it was like to be the first to reach high office.

Ms Gillard said Mr Obama's experience as the first African American president and her status as Australia's  first female prime minister helped them to understand each other.

"I think there is a little bit of a spark there about the sense of being 'The First' and consequently having to deal with things that someone else who's in your position has never had to," Ms Gillard said.

Although Ms Gillard said she admired Mrs Clinton for being "very fearless in putting forward her values" she was ambivalent when asked whether or not the former secretary of state should run for the presidency in 2016.

"I almost don't know what to wish for her," Ms Gillard said.

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