Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton recalls meeting Martin Luther King

Hillary Clinton speaks at Mason Temple in Memphis.
Hillary Clinton speaks at Mason Temple in Memphis.

Friday afternoon, presidential hopeful Senator Hillary Clinton stood in the spot where Martin Luther King was shot and killed, on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel.

Speaking to a gathering at the Mason Temple earlier in the day, Clinton spoke for nearly 30 minutes, giving a speech laced with references to King.

Click here to watch raw video of Hillary Clinton's speech

"Because of him, after 219 years and 43 presidents who were all white men, the next generation will take for granted that a woman or an African American can be President of the United State of America," she said.

Clinton spoke about the time, as a 14-year-old student in Chicago, she met King.

"He didn't ask me as I reached out my hand, 'Where do you live?  What is your experience?' He just shook it," she said.

She choked up as she recalled hearing about King's assassination.  "I was a junior in college," she said. "I walked into my room, and hurled by bag across the room like everything had been destroyed."

Unlike Presidential hopeful Senator John McCain, who spoke at the National Civil Rights Museum, the crowd of students, church members and supporters at Mason temple clapped frequently during Clinton's speech.

Clinton invoked King's legacy as she told the crowd why she should be president.

"there should be healthcare for every American," she said.  "Everyone is entitled to health insurance."

She also pointed out the problems of poverty in the United States and in Memphis, as Mayor Willie Herenton looked on.

"I believe Mayor, Memphis has a 25 percent poverty rate," she said. "That is an improvement over last year, but too high."

The woman who wants to be president said the United States needs a cabinet level position to fight poverty, couching that suggestion in the message King talked about - economic and racial equality and peace for everyone.

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