Hillary Clinton Launches 2016 Presidential Campaign

Hillary Clinton Launches 2016 Presidential Campaign

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton confirmed the obvious on Sunday, officially announcing that she would seek the Democratic nomination for president in 2016.

In a video released on her new campaign website, Clinton said that she was running.

"I'm running for president," Clinton says in the video. "Americans have fought their way back from tough economic times, but the deck is still stacked in favor of those at the top. Everyday Americans need a champion, and I want to be that champion so you can do more than just get by. You can get ahead and stay ahead. Because when families are strong, America is strong."

"So I'm hitting the road to earn your vote. Because it's your time and I hope you'll join me on this journey."

Clinton does not appear in the video until after 90 seconds of footage showing various men, women and children discussing their plans and hopes for 2015.

Clinton also announced that she was running on Twitter.

John Podesta, Clinton's campaign chairman, sent an email to supporters Sunday afternoon telling them that Clinton was running. Podesta said that Clinton was heading to Iowa to meet voters and that there would be a formal kickoff event next month.

Chelsea Clinton also tweeted her support shortly after the announcement.

Clinton made history when she ran for president in 2008, becoming the first woman to win presidential primary races and nabbing a total of about 18 million votes. She suspended her campaign in June 2008 and urged voters to get behind now-President Barack Obama.

After he was elected, Obama nominated Clinton to be secretary of state, a role she held for the entirety of his first term. She became the most-traveled secretary of state in history, visiting 112 countries during her four-year tenure and traveling 956,733 miles -- enough to span the globe more than 38 times. She was lauded for emphasizing women's rights and human rights while heading the State Department, but received criticism over the attack on a U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that took place on Sept. 11, 2012, and left four Americans dead.

Before becoming secretary of state, Clinton represented New York in the U.S. Senate from 2001 to 2009. She also served as first lady of the United States and of Arkansas while her husband, Bill, served as president and governor, respectively.

Clinton has been hinting at a second presidential run for months, joking in a July interview on "The Daily Show" that she wanted an office with "fewer corners" and admitting during a September visit to Iowa that she was "thinking about" running. Clinton initially said she would announce her 2016 plans after the new year, but a New York Times report suggested she would declare her candidacy sooner if the Democrats lost control of the Senate in the midterm elections.

A group of Clinton supporters launched a super PAC called Ready for Hillary in January 2013 in anticipation of her eventual candidacy. The group had raised more than $10.25 million for Clinton's campaign as of October 2014.

Even before Clinton made a definitive statement about her 2016 plans, many people were predicting she'd run -- and win. In October, billionaire Warren Buffett, who endorsed Clinton back in November 2012, said he thought that she would be elected president in 2016.

"I will bet money on it," Buffett said while speaking at Fortune's Most Powerful Women Summit.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) also predicted Clinton would win, saying the former secretary of state would "be one of the best-prepared leaders to preside in the Oval Office."

Several other politicians have endorsed Clinton for president, including Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas), Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.).

An average by HuffPost Pollster shows Clinton already has a solid lead against her potential Democratic primary opponents.

This post has been updated with a more current Pollster chart.

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