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May, 2007:

Say what, Hillary?

Hillary Clinton spoke about immigration in San Diego this weekend, and she decided that personalizing an issue made her more credible somehow.  It’s a little strange, considering I’m a little skeptical about her claims.

In her speech, Clinton talked about her childhood in Park Ridge, using it to focus on issues such as immigration reform — a concern paramount to the huge Hispanic community in California.

She recalled Park Ridge was surrounded by farms that relied on migrant labor and that she used to baby-sit the workers’ children, an experience that awakened her to the complexities of the immigrant experience.

Let’s say she started babysitting in 1961, when she was 15. Park Ridge was surrounded by Edison Park (Chicago), Niles, Glenview, Des Plaines and O’Hare Airport. All of them were well-developed suburbs with no farms to speak of. A 1961 History of Park Ridge shows that the city of Park Ridge’s interests had little to do with farming for years before the book was published.

So she babysat the children of migrant workers in Park Ridge in the 1960′s. What else do you want to tell us, Hillary?