Hillary Clinton Campaign Press Release - An S.C. Mayor Wrote a Letter To His Daughters About Electing the First Woman President. It's Beautiful
He is fighting to make sure nothing stands in the way of his daughters' achieving their dreams.
Dear Bethany and Jordan Grace,
I know, I know. You're used to hearing your dad say that as long as you work hard and have faith, nothing is impossible. But sometimes it can be hard to even dream of doing something nobody like you has ever done. Trust me, I know.
Growing up, I never expected to see a politician who looked like me become president. But in 2008, I watched in awe as Barack Obama ascended to the highest political office in the country.
Now, I've always believed in my ability to do whatever I set my mind to. Grandma and Papa did a very good job of instilling that in me, from the time I was your age. But when President Obama took office, I felt like I really could do anything—truly, in a tangible way I could feel in my heart.
Two years later, Columbia elected me as the first African American mayor in the city's history.
I could never have gotten to where I am if people didn't kick down some doors ahead of me. Because of that, I feel a duty to kick down doors for other people.
When I was 29, Governor Hodges appointed me to his cabinet. He gave me the opportunity of a lifetime, and I used my position to lift up voices that weren't being heard.
I worked hard while there to bring as many women as possible onto my staff. At one point we had an all-female staff, and many of those women have gone on to do remarkable things.
I did that for you two. I wanted to do everything I could to make the world a better place for you, even before you were born.
Of course, both of you know women are capable of accomplishing anything. Your mother is the perfect example of that. But sometimes, things you can't control block you from achieving your dreams.
I don't want you girls to have to wait until you're an adult to have the feeling I had in 2008. I want you to grow up knowing—not just believing, but KNOWING—you can be anything you want, even president of the United States.
That's one of the reasons I'm working so hard to get Hillary Clinton elected.
Bethie, getting to watch you talk with Hillary was one of the proudest moments of my life. I will never forget the look on Secretary Clinton's face when you told her guys had been president for long enough, and it was time for women to take control. She called you the smartest 10-year-old in the world, and she was right.
Jojo, I know you haven't met her yet, but don't worry—I'm working on it.
I want both of you girls to grow up in a better, safer, more prosperous country. I know Secretary Clinton can—and will—build that country.
If you study hard, love your family, serve your community, are never afraid to lead, and continue to follow the model of your mother, your grandmothers, and women like Secretary Clinton, nothing should ever stop you from achieving your dreams.
I am doing everything I can to put a woman in the White House because I believe both of you can grow up to be president—and I want you to believe it, too.
Steve Benjamin is the mayor of Columbia, South Carolina and the president of the African American Mayors Association.
Hillary Clinton, Hillary Clinton Campaign Press Release - An S.C. Mayor Wrote a Letter To His Daughters About Electing the First Woman President. It's Beautiful Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/317266