Chevy Chase may have been the professional comedian in attendance, but it was one of Sen. Clinton's jokes about Mayor Bloomberg—which had a particularly long setup—that had the crowd laughing the hardest.
"I was very touched by Mike's concern for me over these last months, every since the campaign ended, and you know I was really moved that he wanted to talk about the campaign," Clinton deadpanned. "What happened, how it happened, how you did it, what was the reaction that you got, what was effective and what wasn't effective, you know, what worked in advertising and in direct mail, and I mean he was so interested in me that I was just transformed."
The crowd roared with laughter as it became clear she was taking a goodhearted jab at the mayor's rumored presidential ambitions.
Almost all of New York's most prominent politicians were among the 300 or so people in attendance, including two former mayors (Ed Koch and David Dinkins), New York Senator Chuck Schumer, Governor David Patterson, Republican Representative, and even former Rudy Giuliani supporter Peter King. Legendary journalist Barbara Walters was also in attendance.
Clinton had the crowd in stitches when she related a story which demonstrated that Gov. Paterson, who is legally blind, is not afraid to laugh at himself.
"I just was in the middle of a conversation between David and Chuck," Clinton said. "And the governor said, 'We had dinner the other night.' And Chuck said, 'Yeah, I paid for it. You know, I left the check on the table for a long time.' And David said, 'I didn't see it.'"
Though she did dole out a long laundry list of thank you's to everyone who supported her presidential campaign, Clinton was brief in her reflections on her losing bid saying only, "I was disappointed by the outcome, but I am so privileged to have been able to do this, and it is a great country and what we need to do is start acting like Americans that can solve problems and do our best to make sure this country stays great and that's what I'm going to do in the Senate."
Clinton made sure to note that she was actively campaigning for Barack Obama and urged the attendees to join her "to make sure we can carry on this campaign and the causes and issues that are near and dear to us."