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Hillary Clinton book signing draws big crowd in St. Paul

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Former first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton is in the Twin Cities Sunday for a couple of appearances. She spent a few hours at Common Good Books in St. Paul to sign copies of her latest memoir, “Hard Choices.” The book is an account of Clinton’s years serving as secretary of state under President Barack Obama.

Clinton arrived at the bookstore, which is owned by Garrison Keillor, host of the public radio program “A Prairie Home Companion” and a prominent Democrat, at 2 p.m., according to KARE 11. She was scheduled to be there until 4:15 p.m.

The store sold 1,100 copies of the book ahead of time, and Clinton said she would sign all of them during her visit. The Star Tribune says that gave her about 7 seconds to sign each copy of the book.

The book buyers had to wait in a long line outside on the warm afternoon to get their 7 seconds with Clinton.

Many of them were clearly supporters of hers and hope she will run for president in 2016. Clinton has not yet announced her intentions, but she got lots of encouragement from those seeking her autograph.

"She will hopefully make a strong next president," Alex Kertis of Bloomington said, according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Another person in line, Lori Kisch of St. Paul, said, "I'm tired of letting guys run the show. She can show what a woman can do."

Several prominent Democrats welcomed her to the store, including Gov. Mark Dayton, U.S. Sen. Al Franken and St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman.

Across the street, about a dozen protesters demonstrated against Clinton, saying they oppose war and disapprove of Clinton's approach to foreign policy, according to the Pioneer Press. They carried posters that said "No Hillary Bad Choices" and "W.A.R. -- Wasted American Resources."

After the book signing, Clinton attended the Starkey Hearing Foundation's annual celebrity gala at the St. Paul RiverCentre Sunday evening. The event, now in its 14th year, attracted numerous celebrities, politicians and sports stars to raise money to provide hearing aids to thousands of people in need around the world.

Other guests included Oscar winners Forest Whitaker and Marlee Matlin, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Whitaker and Tutu were honored at the event for their humanitarian efforts.

Vikings players Adrian Peterson and Greg Jennings, and former Twin Dave Winfield were also in attendance.

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