Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRepublicans seem set to win the midterms — unless they defeat themselves Poll: Democracy is under attack, and more violence may be the future Popping the progressive bubble MORE took subtle jabs at President TrumpDonald TrumpJan. 6 panel faces double-edged sword with Alex Jones, Roger Stone Trump goes after Woodward, Costa over China Republicans seem set to win the midterms — unless they defeat themselves MORE during her Class Day speech at Yale, which she began by pulling out a Russian hat in an apparent reference to the ongoing investigation into Russia's election meddling.
The former secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential nominee noted the over-the-top hats students traditionally wear during Yale’s Class Day and said she “brought a hat too.”
“A Russian hat,” Clinton said on Sunday while showing the laughing crowd a ushanka hat.
“If you can't beat them, join them,” she added.
Clinton, who graduated from Yale Law School in 1973, also poked fun at her unsuccessful 2016 presidential campaign by referencing Michigan, a state she lost by just over 10,000 votes.
“I am thrilled for all of you, even the three of you who live in Michigan and didn’t request your absentee ballots in time,” Clinton joked.
Later, speaking about her loss to Trump, she said: "No, I'm not over it. I still think about the 2016 election. I still regret the mistakes I made. I still think, though, that understanding what happened in such a weird and wild election in American history will help us defend our democracy in the future."
Clinton also used her speech to talk about the polarization in American politics and implore the students to work to uphold American democracy.
“The radicalization of American politics hasn’t been symmetrical,” Clinton said. “There are leaders who blatantly incite people with hateful rhetoric.”
"Waging a war on the rule of law and a free press, delegitimizing elections, perpetrating shameless corruption and rejecting the idea that our leaders should be public servants undermines our national unity," she added, in an apparent reference to Trump, whom she never mentioned by name.
She added that only “radical empathy” would be a substantial response to the issues plaguing the U.S.
“Healing our country is going to take what I call radical empathy,” Clinton said. “As hard as it is, this is a moment to reach across divides of race, class and politics. To try to see the world through the eyes of people very different from ourselves and to return to rational debate.”