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Hillary Clinton pledges Dem unity and reflects on historic victory


BROOKLYN - Hillary Clinton shattered an elusive glass ceiling Tuesday night, making history by clinching the Democratic nomination and becoming the first woman to lead a national ticket of a major political party.

6/7/16, 10:39 PM ET

Hillary Clinton Tells Crowd ‘We’ve Reached a Milestone’

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speaks to supporters in Brooklyn, New York, on Tuesday night.
Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speaks to supporters in Brooklyn, New York, on Tuesday night.
Noting that she was standing under a literal “glass ceiling” inside of a greenhouse, Clinton called tonight’s achievement “a milestone.”

Exactly 8 years after delivering her famous “18 million cracks” concession speech and endorsing then-Sen. Barack Obama after her first failed presidential bid, Clinton declared victory and thanked her supporters for putting her over the top.

“Tonight’s victory is not about one person. It belongs to generations of women and men who struggled and sacrificed and made this moment possible,” Clinton said.

Acknowledging her primary rival early on in her remarks, Clinton congratulated Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders “for the extraordinary campaign he’s run” and said, despite their differences, they will be able to unify the Democratic Party.

The rest of her speech was aimed directly at Donald Trump. Clinton, echoing last week’s national security speech in San Diego, called the presumptive Republican nominee “temperamentally unfit.” She then slammed him for his immigration proposals and divisive rhetoric.

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“He’s trying to wall off Americans from each other,” Clinton argued. “Donald Trump doesn’t believe we are stronger together.”

Clinton also called Trump out for his comments on the federal judge presiding over his Trump University lawsuit, a common occurrence on the trail these days.

“We should lift each other up, not tear each other down. To be great, we can’t be small. We have to be as big as the values that define us,” Clinton said.

Despite the Associated Press declaring Clinton the presumptive nominee on Monday night, aides said they wanted to save the big celebration for Tuesday’s Brooklyn event.

The campaign was also concerned about voter turnout in California and New Jersey, which both held contests Tuesday.

“According to the news we are on the brink of a historic, historic, unprecedented moment, but we still have work to do, don’t we? We have six elections tomorrow and we are going to fight hard for every single vote, especially right here in California,” Clinton said Monday night in Long Beach.

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On Tuesday, the former secretary of state was joined by her husband, former President Bill Clinton, daughter Chelsea and son-in-law Marc Mezvinsky.

Before she spoke, the campaign debuted a new video focusing on women’s rights and the role Clinton has played in breaking through this particular gender barrier. Entitled “History Made,” the ad hammers home the significance of the moment and features many prominent female voices.

History was a key theme throughout Tuesday’s speech. Clinton referred to both the Seneca Falls Convention and the amendment that gave the women the right to vote.

She also grew emotional when talking about her late mother, Dorothy, saying she wishes she “could have been here to see her daughter become the Democratic nominee for president.” 

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Clinton arguably boasts experience in government unparalleled by anyone in the presidential field — but that has also made her a high-profile target for attack.

This story originally appeared on NBCNews.com.