A Thing Called Hope

As the Clinton campaign starts gearing up for 1996, the First Lady re-emerges as a powerful influence

HAROLD ICKES DOESN'T LEAVE THINGS to chance. While he was running the Democratic Convention in New York City in 1992, he insisted the cashier's check for the confetti vendor be held in escrow in case the climactic balloon drop following Bill Clinton's acceptance speech flopped. Ickes' tactic forced the balloon man to climb into the rafters to cut the netting with a large knife. The sight of an armed man climbing through the lights at Madison Square Garden drove Clinton's security detail to distraction. "The Secret Service guys nearly shot the guy out of the rafters," recalled a White House aide,...

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