Clinton, who has kept a fairly public profile since her 2016 election loss to President Donald Trump, said she felt there is a double standard for men and women to leave the public eye after an election loss.
When asked about how she was told to “get off the public stage and shut up,” Clinton said it began right after the election.
“I was really struck by how people said that to me—you know, mostly people in the press, for whatever reason—like oh, you know, ‘Go away, go away,’” she said during a discussion at the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers, adding: “And I had one of the young people who works for me go back and do a bit of research. They never said that to any man who was not elected. I was kind of struck by that.”
Clinton backed up her assertion by pointing out that other presidential candidates who lost elections such as John Kerry, John McCain, Mitt Romney and Al Gore continued to have public-facing careers following their losses.
“I think it was the moment in time, because of what had been expected to happen in the election, which obviously did not,” she said. “Then a lot of angst and second-guessing and finger pointing and everything that went on. But I am really committed to speaking out and doing what I can to have a voice in the debate of where our country is going.”
Clinton has faced a large amount of criticism for her public comments following her election loss. In her book, What Happened, the former Democratic nominee lays out several reasons she feels that Trump was eventually elected over her, including the FBI’s investigation into her private email server and Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.
Earlier this year reports suggested that Clinton planned to keep a lower profile ahead of the 2018 midterms and would selectively help Democrats who were running in congressional districts she won in the 2016 election but elected Republicans for Congress.