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Dear Secretary Clinton,

this isn't the letter that I thought I'd be writing you today. But I wanted to write you anyway, because your run was historic and important even without a victory at the end, and I want to honor that even as I start to brace for what may be coming.

It meant so much to me, getting to vote for you. I'm 30 years old, and I was a little girl when you were the First Lady - and, along with my mother, you were one of my models for what a woman could be and do, and for how much a woman could do to change the world. And yes, watching you fight against the forces of cultural conservatism back then was one of my first lessons in sexism, as I began to understand exactly how much resistance powerful women could expect to face as they did their work. Those forces won a battle last night, but they won't win the war - the arc of the universe will bend our way, I know it, if we continue to work hard and uphold the faith.

The women who won us our right to vote faced uncounted setbacks, up to and including violent attacks on their persons, and yet they were victorious in the end. The women of the 1980s and 90s, who fought for the right to wear pants in the workplace and to outlaw sexual harassment faced both losses and victories. So shall we do. One of the little girls who saw you running your exemplary, intelligent, organized, high-minded campaign will be inspired - or one of the little girls who saw you working as First Lady in just the same way - and will try again. Maybe the world will be ready for us by then. I'm sorry, terribly sorry, that it wasn't you, because you would have been brilliant. But our day will come.

Your legacy of decades of tireless work on behalf of women and children stands. Everything you gave us - the hope, the solidarity, the brief shining moment of a utopian vision of a better future where "Madame President" would have been a common utterance - stands. I cast two votes for you, in the primary and in the election, while wearing suffragette white, and no one can take that away from me. Madame Secretary, we have already made history.

Thank You. And I don't accept your apology, because I don't believe you did a single thing wrong.
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