Hillary Does Letterman 'Late Show'

After a week of record-breaking book sales and a whirlwind tour of interviews with media bigwigs the likes of Barbara Walters and Larry King, the Hillary juggernaut shifted down a notch to work a slightly less serious circuit.

She went on Letterman.

"Late Show" host David Letterman, who's often used the Clinton family misfortunes to fuel his nightly monologues and "Top Ten" lists, served up the usual quips and wisecracks Monday night before ushering the senator into his desk-side hot seat. He commented he'd gone in for open-heart surgery shortly after their last meeting.

But once the former first lady took the stage, the after-hours comedy king put the cheap shots aside and was on his best behavior.

Letterman's questions ran the political gamut. Clinton parried them with practiced ease and coy smiles, offering replies as beige as her well-tailored pants suit.

He prodded Clinton for details on her political ambitions and plans to run for president in 2008: "I've said I have no intention to run." He pressed her to name a favorite Democratic candidate for the 2004 race: "I like them all."

And when discussing Clinton's newly published, top-selling memoir "Living History," Letterman asked whether she'd really considered divorcing husband Bill Clinton following his admission of a scandalous affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

"I made the right decision for me,'' said Clinton.

But the senator didn't mince words when it came time comment on the economy and bash the Bush Administration's recent tax cuts. "We should go back to having some fiscal responsibility in this country," she said. "I don't think you should be running a government on your credit card, like I don't think you should be living your life on a credit card, and when you do, you run into problems."

"The rich are going to get a whole lot richer and we're going to be leaving more and more middle class people behind. I don't think that's the way America is supposed to run," Clinton said.

Before the interview, Letterman fretted out loud that Walters and King had covered all the bases in their recent talks with Clinton, but neither posed this question:

"Does it bother you now, did it bother you then, that people like myself continue to make jokes about your husband?," he said.

To which the ever-poised Clinton replied, "Well part of the reason I came on this show is, I didn't know you did."

By Lauren Johnston

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