Bill Clinton -vs- Monica Lewinsky
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Clinton mischaracterized affair, Lewinsky says
Published Saturday, June 26, 2004
LONDON (AP) - Monica Lewinsky begs to differ.
The former White House intern scorned Bill Clintons explanation that he had an affair with her "just because I could" and accused the former president of failing to correct the record and make it clear in his new memoir that their relationship was mutual.
In her first public comments on the book, "My Life," Lewinsky accused Clinton of trying to destroy her with his characterization of the affair as something dirty and wrong and argued that the liaison was one of mutual affection.
"I really didnt expect him to go into detail about our relationship" in the book, the 30-year-old Lewinsky said in an interview with The Daily Mail. "But if he had and hed done it honestly, I wouldnt have minded. ... I did, though, at least expect him to correct the false statements he made when he was trying to protect the presidency.
"Instead, he talked about it as though I had laid it all out there for the taking. I was the buffet and he just couldnt resist the dessert."
In an interview with Independent Television News broadcast yesterday, Lewinsky said she was especially upset by Clintons assertion on CBS "60 Minutes" that he embarked on the affair "for the worst possible reason. Just because I could."
She said she has spent the past several years trying to "move on." "It has been so difficult because of so many of the lies that he has told about me and about what happened," she told ITN. "I can understand someone wanting to save his presidency. But I dont accept that he had to completely desecrate my character, which not only affected me but my family, my friends and my future."
In the past few weeks we have watched as our country was swept by a paroxism of adoration for Ronald Reagan, and this week the publication of Bill Clinton's memoirs seems to have brought out an equal measure of loathing.
The mindless hate that was behind his vilification as President over the Lewinsky affair, is alive and well despite the passage of time.
When asked why they hate Clinton so much, the usual response you will get from those who hate him mentions the sordid affair he had with Lewinsky. If you point out that he engaged in a private sexual affair with a consenting adult, the Clinton haters will usually respond by saying "it's not about the sex, it's about the fact that he lied to a grand jury, and was impeached for it".
While it is technically accurate to say that Clinton was impeached, the second part of the impeachment process requires a trial before the U.S. Senate, where Clinton was acquitted of both articles of impeachment that had been brought by the House of Representatives. The fact is that he was not impeached by the House of Representatives, he was impeached by the Republicans in the House who had a majority, and that makes it a political hatchet job.
Yes, it was wrong of him to have lied, but I feel it was equally wrong to have asked him about the blow-job in the first place. The blow-job he got from Monica, while sordid and tawdry, was private consensual sex between two adults. This makes it nobody else's business.
The sad part is that this is what Clinton will be remembered for. The mindless anger that Clinton's unfortunate acts engendered is absurd in the extreme. I was listening to talk radio yesterday and two callers stick in my mind. One guy came out and said that Clinton never told the truth, not even once, while he was President. The second caller was a woman who stated that she counsels 10-12 year-old girls in sexual matters, and she was angry at Clinton for being such a terrible role model for children. Rather than blame the abstinence-only sex education programs that are popular today, she blamed Clinton for the fact that the girls she counsels today believe that a blow-job isn't sex because of what Clinton said at least six years ago. That means this woman believes that girls, who were at most six-years old at the time Clinton made his absurd remark that a blow-job wasn't sex, were affected by this remark. This is the kind of mindless hate that led to his impeachment in the House.