Hillary Clinton joins Political Shoe Hall of Fame

Hillary Clinton’s brush with flying footwear yesterday got us thinking about great shoes of political history. (Oh, just shut up and go with it.)

Naturally, we all went to Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev banging his shoe on his delegate desk at the United Nations in 1960; we were stunned to find out that there is neither film footage nor a photograph of this moment. (No, he didn’t wield the shoe during his “We will bury you” speech at the podium, of which footage exists.)

Another reporter suggested the Imelda Marcos shoe collection, circa 1986.

President George W. Bush showed quick reflexes in December 2008 by dodging shoes hurled by an Iraqi journalist in Baghdad.

Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard was the target in October 2010:

In October 2011, Egyptians in Cairo’s Tahrir Square held their shoes aloft in protest as Hosni Mubarak gave a speech:

Likewise in a January 2012 protest against German president Christian Wulff in Berlin:

And that brings us to yesterday’s moment as Hillary Clinton gave a speech in Las Vegas:

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Erik Nelson

    Good concept! You reminded me of the old Iraqi guy along the road near/in Baghdad when the city fell to American forces. He hit a picture of Saddam with a shoe as American forces drove by.

  • Willis James

    Not to be forgotten, the most famous shoe photo of the 50’s

    Democratic presidential candidate and Illinois Gov. Adlai E. Stevenson in the 1952 race.


  • Elwood

    Apparently there are problems with Hellary’s reflexes and vision. The shoe was already past her when she asked “What was that, a bat?”

  • JohnW

    I’ll give both George W and Hillary an “A” in dealing with flying objects.

    In her marriage to Bill, Hillary is probably more accustomed to being the thrower. But I thought her reflexes were just fine. She was remarkably composed. Great lines about cirque du soleil and not realizing that solid waste management was so controversial. Showed some good JFK-type wit.

    George W ducking when the shoe was thrown at him was impressive. But, as I recall, he was standing next to the Iraqi prime minister and looking out at the audience, not talking, at the time. So, he had a better opportunity to see it coming.