Chelsea Clinton was one of the honorees at Variety’s Power of Women New York luncheon on Friday, but that didn’t stop host Vanessa Bayer from making a joke at the Clinton family’s expense.
In her opening monologue at the event, the “Saturday Night Live” comedian introduced the six women who would be honored that afternoon: Jessica Chastain, Gayle King, Blake Lively, Audra McDonald, Tina Knowles, Shari Redstone and Clinton.
“And they all have one thing in common,” Bayer quipped. “None of their moms are president.”
The audience groaned a little at that point.
Upon accepting her honor, for her work with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, Clinton mostly spoke about the group’s efforts to combat childhood obesity.
For five minutes, it seemed as though Clinton might let Bayer’s remarks go unnoticed, though she did speak of valuable lessons that her grandmother and parents had taught her about gratitude and persistence.
But Clinton closed with a line that touched on her mother’s presidential run — and seemed to give the “SNL” star the benefit of the doubt.
“Vanessa, we may be able to say in this room today that no one’s mother is currently president,” Clinton said, addressing Bayer. “But someday, someone’s will be.”
The 37-year-old daughter of Bill and Hillary Clinton has been in the public eye since her father was elected president 25 years ago. She also emerged on the campaign trail in recent years to support her mother’s presidential candidacy.
However, over the decades, Chelsea Clinton has mostly shied away from the most controversial public debates — until recently, in the months after President Trump’s surprise win against her mother.
“In recent days, we’ve noticed a different Chelsea Clinton — one more than willing to speak out, often a bit bluntly,” The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake reported in February. “And she’s speaking out specifically against President Trump, using his preferred medium: Twitter.”
The younger Clinton has repeatedly stated that she has no plans to run for office, but it hasn’t stopped others from encouraging her to do so — nor has it stopped people from speculating that her denials actually leave the door open to some future campaign.
This included King, who on Friday resurrected talk of Chelsea running for office.
“I’ll resist the urge to say Chelsea 2024,” the TV personality said from the podium, according to the Associated Press. “I won’t say it.”