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Hillary Gets Official

Hillary Rodham Clinton plans to formally announce her candidacy for the U.S. Senate from New York to several thousand people on Feb. 6 at a State University of New York campus.

The planned site is not far from her new home in suburban Westchester County, aides said Saturday.

The Sunday mid-afternoon event will be held at SUNY-Purchase. The first lady will be accompanied by President Clinton, their daughter Chelsea and the first lady's mother, Dorothy Rodham.

In addition to the announcement event, the Clinton campaign has plans for 500 simultaneous house parties across the state that are expected to attract more than 24,000 supporters, her campaign said. She plans to make a telephone call to the parties after her televised announcement.

"I am thrilled to have the support of so many New Yorkers who believe in my candidacy and who know that I will fight for them and the issues they care about," Mrs. Clinton said in a statement.

"People are really ready to hit the ground running with Hillary when she announces," state Democratic Chairwoman Judith Hope said.

Mrs. Clinton is expected to face New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, a Republican, for the Senate seat being vacated at the end of this year by Democrat Daniel Patrick Moynihan. Giuliani has not yet said when he plans to formally enter the race. Both have been campaigning and raising money for months.

Also Saturday, sources in the Clinton campaign confirmed a report in the New York Daily News that Hollywood producer Harry Thomason is working on a video to be shown in connection with the first lady's announcement. The Daily News said the video would feature various prominent New Yorkers praising the first lady. Until this month, she had never lived in New York.

Thomason was the driving force behind the production of The Man from Hope video that helped launch Bill Clinton's run for the White House in 1992. He has been a confidant to the president and the first lady throughout their time in the White House.

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