TODAY   |  April 02, 2013

After downtime, Hillary Clinton is back in spotlight

Since stepping down as secretary of state Hillary Clinton has only been seen in public once, but that’s about to change with a speech tonight at the Kennedy Center and a global women’s summit in New York on Friday. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports.

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>>> hillary clinton makes her first major appearance since stepping down as secretary of state. with vice president joe biden scheduled to be there it has political pundits thinking about 2016 . nbc's andrea mitchell is in washington good morning to you.

>> good morning, asavannah. there will be a lot of people trying to read the political body language when the two most prominent possible candidates for 2016 take the stage together at the kennedy center . hillary clinton and joe biden , past colleagues perhaps future rivals, 1,000 days from iowa, she says she hasn't decided whether to run. he makes no secret of his intentions. tonight clinton has home court advantage . the event held by vital voices global partnership a woman's organization she helped create 14 years ago to empower women around the world. it is clinton 's passion an event she missed once in all those years only because of state department travel.

>> so she's going into a very comfortable place where she's going to be a rock star .

>> reporter: it will be joe biden 's first appearance at the annual gathering but as the original sponsor of the violence against women act he is also very popular with women's rights groups and will be presenting an award to men in india for their crusade against rape. the spotlight tonight will be on clinton , since leaving office she's been seen in public once accepting a pentagon award in february. she's reemerging in a big way, a video endorsing gay marriage .

>> lgbt americans are our colleagues, our teachers, our soldiers, our friends, our loved ones.

>> reporter: now tonight's speech in washington, and another women's global summit in new york friday where she's always a star attraction. clinton has plenty of time to decide what's next, even as polls show she would be formidable if she runs again for president.

>> there's early polling showing she's doing well in florida against marco rubio and jeb bush but her people are saying give us some space.

>> there's obviously plenty of time but until hillary clinton decides on her future none of the other leading democrats can decide on theirs. matt?

>> andrea, thank you very much.