Hillary Clinton appeared with former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg (I) on Monday to tout the work of an initiative to gather data that will help create opportunity for women and girls.
The likely Democratic front-runner for the 2016 presidential nomination left politics mostly aside at the event, as she has at a range of events focusing on women's rights, as she holds off on a presidential announcement. That announcementcould come in the spring.
She did appear with Bloomberg, a Republican-turned-independent who for a time was rumored to be considering a presidential run of his own. Current New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D), a rising star on the left, whose inauguration Clinton attended in January, ran his campaign largely against the record of Bloomberg.
Bloomberg had warm words for Clinton in introducing her on Monday at the event, hosted by Bloomberg Philanthropies in New York City, calling her "a great secretary of State, a great senator for New York."
"If my mother and father knew that I was on a first-name basis with Hillary Clinton, it would be a very big deal," Bloomberg said.
Clinton's speech stayed focused on touting the work and new partnerships of the initiative, calledData 2x, created by Clinton in 2012 to help fill in gaps in data about women and girls around the world.
She echoed her famous 1995 call in China that women's rights are human rights, but also went further.
"It is a human rights issue after all. It is an issue of morality," she said. "But we’re not making the progress we should be if that's the principal and in some cases exclusive argument we make."
Therefore, she said the goal was to "build a case strong enough to convince the skeptics based on hard-data and clear-eyed analysis that creating opportunities for women and girls across the globe directly supports everyone’s security and prosperity."
Clinton said the issues need to be taken seriously, citing experience as secretary of State. "I got tired of seeing otherwise thoughtful people smile and nod when I raised these issues, foreign leaders, business executives, even senior officials in our own government," she said.
"After all, good decisions in government, in business, in life are based on evidence," she said. "Rather than ideology, or gut feelings or anecdotes."