Though the world has changed dramatically since 2000, Hillary Clinton's reasons for running for office remain mostly the same, leaving newsrooms with little to do but repeat over and over the things that supposedly drive the former first lady now that she is making her second run for president.
Since her campaign for U.S. Senate at the start of the new millennium, Clinton has said that her political motivations are a deep-rooted concern for women and children. She repeats often and vigorously that her background as a working mother and the daughter of a small business owner makes her uniquely qualified for higher office.
In 2000, Clinton told reporters again and again that her desire to help women and children was compelling her to run for Daniel Patrick Moynihan's Senate seat in New York. Later, when she decided in 2008 to run for president, she repeated these same reasons — and so did journalists.
"I've gone to work. I've raised a child. And I've spent 30 years trying to better the lives of children and families," said Clinton in 2000, in response to what she called "fair questions" about why she had chosen to run. "I may be new to the neighborhood, but I'm not new to your concerns."
"When I visited [New York] businesses…I thought about my father, who ran a small business and worked hard every day," the former first lady, who billed herself at the time as a "new Democrat," said. "I've seen first-hand the kind of challenges New Yorkers face today. I care about the same issues you do. I understand them and I know I can make progress on them."
Later, when Clinton competed for the Democrats' 2008 presidential nomination against then-Sen. Barack Obama, Clinton was able to add "U.S. senator" to the list of qualifications she relied on in 2000.
"[I]n the Senate, I have worked across party lines to get billions more for children's health care," she said in a statement to supporters.
"I have never been afraid to stand up for what I believe in or to face down the Republican machine," Clinton said of her experience in the U.S. Senate. "I can say I know how Washington Republicans think, how they operate and how to beat them."
She also banked on the unpopularity of President George W. Bush, saying, "Only a new president will be able to undo Bush's mistakes and restore our hope and optimism."
At the heart of her 2008 campaign was, again, Clinton's supposed concern for women and children, which she again described as being rooted in her own upbringing.
"I grew up in a middle-class family in the middle of America," Clinton said in 2007. "I've fought for children for more than 30 years…As First Lady, I helped to expand health care coverage to millions of children and to pass legislation that dramatically increased adoptions. I also traveled to China to affirm that women's rights are human rights."
Now, in 2015, Clinton has an important new title to add to her résumé: U.S. secretary of state. But she has focused instead on her role as a grandmother, claiming her commitment to women and children has been renewed by the birth in September of granddaughter Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky.
Clinton announced her presidential candidacy Sunday in a highly anticipated media release that ended up being deemed "anticlimactic" by some journalists. Since that rollout, the candidate has been eagerly telling voters – again – that she's a fighter for women and children.
"I've been fighting for children and families my entire adult life," Clinton said this week during a roundtable discussion in Monticello, Iowa. "We need to strengthen family and communities, because that is where it all starts."
Clinton added that she has gained important new perspective thanks to the new parenthood of daughter Chelsea and son-in-law Marc Mezvinsky (another scion of a Democratic dynasty, whose parents are former Pennsylvania Rep. Marjorie Margolies and Edward Mezvinsky, a former Iowa congressman convicted in 2001 of felony fraud).
"I have this new granddaughter and I want her to have every opportunity, but I want every child in our country to have every opportunity," Clinton said this week. "It's one of the main reasons that I decided to run."
The Clinton campaign has so far mostly avoided bringing attention to her post-2008 experience at the top of Foggy Bottom, where her actions included making a failed effort at "resetting" relations with Russia and taking a lead role in the decision to help topple Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi.
Russia subsequently annexed a large portion of its neighbor Ukraine and, according to most reports, continues to foment that nation's civil war. Following the fall of Gaddafi, Libya sank into a vicious jihadist civil war that claimed the lives of the U.S. ambassador and three other embassy staffers in Benghazi in 2012. The capital Tripoli is currently said to be under the control of the rebel group Libya Dawn, while another part of the country has declared itself a "province" of the Islamic State.