Hillary and Dikembe

by Michael Crowley | November 16, 2009

Another nice bit from that Vogue piece--this one about Hillary's ill-tempered moment in the Congo a few weeks ago:

One aspect of the incident that went unreported is that [retired NBA star Dikembe] Mutombo, a national hero in the Democratic Republic of the Congo who has invested millions in his country, swooped in and rescued Clinton from the long, awkward, stunned silence that followed her outburst. He defended her and put the students oh so gracefully in their place. "Madam Secretary say hope is something is in the sky," he said in his broken English. "Don't you hope that maybe one day you will have a better house and you'll have a better job, maybe you can go and find the way to help your mother and your father? My dad worked as a teacher making only $37. All he did is stress the education. And we used the education as a vehicle to move us forward, and that's why I'm here today sitting here. So you better have hope."

A speech right out of the Clinton playbook. As everyone was rushing out of the auditorium, Clinton came offstage and was approached by the student, and they had an amicable exchange. Outside, Clinton ran into Mutombo and said, "Oh, my God, I'm in love with you! I want a transcript of what you said. That's the message."

Would've been pretty great if Dikembe had just wagged his finger at the questioner, though.

Source URL: http://www.newrepublic.com//blog/the-plank/hillary-and-dikembe