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The Bill Clinton Reckoning

- November 17, 2017

Are Democrats Still Willing To Appear With, Fundraise With, Or Celebrate Bill Clinton's Legacy After The Reckoning?


TOP TAKEAWAYS

  • This Friday evening and Saturday afternoon, Bill and Hillary Clinton will be making joint appearances, including one event that will be moderated by James Carville to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Bill Clinton's election.
    • James Carville infamously smeared one of Clinton's accusers, saying "if you drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you'll find."
  • Since Monday, numerous articles have been published prompting Democrats to reconsider the legacy of Bill Clinton.
    • The New York Times' columnist Michelle Goldberg: "It's fair to conclude that because of Broaddrick's allegations, Bill Clinton no longer has a place in decent society."
    • Fifty-three percent of Hillary Clinton voters now believe the accusations against Bill Clinton are credible, up from 27 percent of Democrats in 1999.
    • Vox: "Bill Clinton should have resigned."
    • Sen. Gillibrand (D-NY): Bill Clinton should have resigned over Lewinsky affair.
  • Politico reported that years of excusing Bill Clinton's misconduct "suddenly seems morally indefensible," a Washington Post columnist wrote the vast majority of Democrats were loyal to Clinton until this week, and The New York Times contacted a dozen prominent political activists - none went on the record to defend Clinton.
  • The Atlantic 's Caitlin Flanagan notes, that Bill Clinton has yet to face the "swift and pitiless justice" that has befallen others in the last five weeks.
    • Just three weeks ago, Showtime dropped Mark Halperin from a show following revelations of sexual assault, but Showtime has not announced what it plans to do with the TV rights, which it owns, of Bill Clinton's upcoming book.
  • Despite inquiries from The New York Times, Bill Clinton has remained quiet since the reckoning began this week, however, at least one of Bill Clinton's weekend events has a Q&A portion.

BILL CLINTON WILL FACE THE PUBLIC FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE THE RECKONING STARTED

This Friday And Saturday, Bill And Hillary Clinton Will Make Two Joint Public Appearances - One Of Which Will Celebrate The 25th Anniversary Of Bill Clinton's Election

The New York Times : "Mr. Clinton Has Kept Publicly Quiet Amid The Flurry Of Sexual Misconduct Stories Lately, And His Office Has No Comment On Wednesday." "Mr. Clinton has kept publicly quiet amid the flurry of sexual misconduct stories lately, and his office has no comment on Wednesday. But other Democrats were not as willing to come to his defense this week. Of a dozen prominent political activists contacted on Wendesday, none went on the record on Mr. Clinton's behalf." (Peter Baker, "'What About Bill?' Sexual Misconduct Debate Revives Questions About Clinton," The New York Times, 11/15/17)

On Friday, Bill And Hillary Clinton Will Be Making A Joint Appearance And Conducting A Q&A At An Event In Texas. "The 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, and former President Bill Clinton will take questions during a joint appearance Nov. 17 at The Pavilion Indoor Theater at the Irving Music Factory. … The first venue to open will be The Pavilion, a convertible indoor/outdoor, state-of-the-art concert hall that can hold 2,500 guests in a theater-style setting, 4,000 guests for an indoor upscale arena experience, or expand into an indoor/outdoor open-air pavilion for up to 8,000 guests." (Karen Robinson-Jacobs, "Bill And Hillary Clinton Will Take Your Questions At Irving Music Factory Event," The Dallas Morning News , 8/8/17)

  • The Event "Seems Sure To Sell Out, With Only 4,000 Seats Available…" "Scheduled for Friday, November 17, the event is titled, 'A Special Evening with President Bill Clinton and Secretary Hillary Clinton.' So far, there is scant information about it, but it seems sure to sell out, with only 4,000 seats available in the venue's indoor theater where it's being held. There are no other similar events of its kind on either of their schedules." (Alex Bentley, "Bill And Hillary Clinton Plan Special Joint Appearance At New Texas Entertainment Center ," Culture Map Houston , 8/10/17)

This Saturday, Bill And Hillary Clinton Will Celebrate The 25 th Anniversary Of Bill Clinton's Election By Participating In An Event In Little Rock, Arkansas That Will Be Moderated By James Carville. "In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the election of Bill Clinton and Al Gore as the 42nd President and 45th Vice President of the United States, the Clinton Foundation is bringing together '92 campaign staff, friends, and family for a reunion celebration in Little Rock that includes a special conversation with President Bill Clinton and Secretary Hillary Clinton, moderated by James Carville. Bill and Hillary Clinton are appearing jointly at a lecture in the former president's home state later this month to mark the 25th anniversary of his 1992 election." (Press Release, "25th Anniversary of the Election of Bill Clinton as the 42nd President Of The United States," Clinton Foundation , 11/3/17)

  • James Carville Infamously Attempted To Smear One Of Clinton's Accusers, Saying "If You Drag A Hundred-Dollar Bill Through A Trailer Park, You Never Know What You'll Find." "I am reminded of Clinton strategist James Carville, who, seeking to discredit Paula Jones, said: 'If you drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you'll find.'" (Matt Lewis, "So, Feminists Are Finally Admitting It: Bill Clinton Was A Cad (Or Worse)," The Daily Beast , 11/16/17)
  • It Is Expected To Be The Largest Crowd In The History Of The Clinton School Of Public Service. "The largest crowd in the history of the Clinton School of Public Service will gather in Little Rock's Statehouse Convention Center later this month to hear from former President Bill Clinton and his wife, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton." (Frank E. Lockwood, "Bill And Hillary Clinton Talk In Little Rock To Fill Up Venue Seats," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette , 11/8/17)

Headlines

The Atlantic Headline: "Bill Clinton: A Reckoning" (Caitlin Flanagan, "Bill Clinton: A Reckoning," The Atlantic , 11/13/17)

Vox Headline: "Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned" (Matthew Yglesias, "Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned," Vox , 11/15/17)

Slate Headline: "It's Astonishing That It Took This Long For The Bill Clinton Moment Of Reckoning To Arrive" (Ruth Graham, "It's Astonishing That It Took This Long For The Bill Clinton Moment Of Reckoning To Arrive," Slate , 11/16/17)

The New York Times : "Gillibrand Says Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned Over Lewinsky Affair" (Jennifer Steinhauer, "Gillibrand Says Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned Over Lewinsky Affair," The New York Times , 11/16/17)

Huffington Post Headline: "Most Hillary Clinton Voters Think The Allegations Against Bill Clinton Are Credible" (Ariel Edwards-Levy, "Most Hillary Clinton Voters Think The Allegations Against Bill Clinton Are Credible," Huffington Post , 11/15/17)

Miami Herald: " Bill Clinton's Accusers Deserved To Be Heard, Donna Brazile Says During Miami Visit" (Glenn Garvin, "Bill Clinton's Accusers Deserved To Be Heard, Donna Brazile Says During Miami Visit," Miami Herald , 11/16/17)

The Washington Post Op-Ed Headline: "Democrats Try To Reckon With Bill Clinton's Alleged Sex Crimes - And Fail." (Molly Roberts, Op-Ed, "Democrats Try To Reckon With Bill Clinton's Alleged Sex Crimes," The Washington Post , 11/15/17)

The New York Times 's Op-Ed Headline: "I Believe Juanita " (Michelle Goldberg, Op-Ed, "I Believe Juanita," The New York Times , 11/13/17)

The New York Times Headline: "'What About Bill?' Sexual Misconduct Debate Revives Questions About Clinton" (Peter Baker, "'What About Bill?' Sexual Misconduct Debate Revives Questions About Clinton," The New York Times , 11/15/17)

The Daily Beast Headline: "So, Feminists Are Finally Admitting It: Bill Clinton Was A Cad (Or Worse)" (Matt Lewis, "So, Feminists Are Finally Admitting It: Bill Clinton Was A Cad (Or Worse)," The Daily Beast , 11/16/17)

The Reckoning: Democrats Are Now Reexamining Bill Clinton's Legacy

Vox: Democrats Are "Reconsidering The Legacy Of One Of Party's Most Important Figures Of The Past Quarter-Century: President Bill Clinton." "America's ongoing national reckoning with sexual assault and sexual harassment by powerful men now has liberals and Democrats reconsidering the legacy of one of party's most important figures of the past quarter-century: President Bill Clinton." (Dylan Matthews, "The Rape Allegation Against Bill Clinton, Explained," Vox , 11/14/17)

  • "Now, In The Wake Of Revelations About Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, James Toback, Louis CK, And Many, Many More, Bill Clinton's Record Is Being Reassessed As Well." (Dylan Matthews, "The Rape Allegation Against Bill Clinton, Explained," Vox , 11/14/17)

The New York Times ' Columnist Michelle Goldberg: "It's Fair To Conclude That Because Of Broaddrick's Allegations, Bill Clinton No Longer Has A Place In Decent Society." (Michelle Goldberg, Op-Ed, "I Believe Juanita," The New York Times , 11/13/17)

According To The New York Times, The Reemergence Of Bill Clinton's Scandals "May Influence A Historical Legacy That Mr. Clinton And His Allies Have Spent The Past 17 Years Scrubbing Of Scandal." "The emerging revisionism may influence a historical legacy that Mr. Clinton and his allies have spent the past 17 years scrubbing of scandal. Despite his impeachment on perjury and obstruction for covering up sexual liaisons with Ms. Lewinsky, Mr. Clinton until lately had made progress in framing the national memory of his presidency as a time of peace and prosperity." (Peter Baker, "'What About Bill?' Sexual Misconduct Debate Revives Questions About Clinton," The New York Times , 11/15/17)

Fifty-Three Percent Of Hillary Clinton Voters Believe The Accusations Against Bill Clinton Are Credible, Up From Just 27 Percent Of Democrats In 1999. "Hillary Clinton voters say by a 42-point margin, 53 percent to 11 percent, that the accusations against Bill Clinton are credible, with the remaining 36 percent unsure. … Polling from the 1990s indicates that Democrats were considerably less concerned about Bill Clinton's behavior while he was in office. A 1999 Fox News poll found that 79 percent of Democrats said Clinton accuser Juanita Broaddrick's allegations were 'not worth investigating because the alleged event happened 20 years ago,' and that just 27 percent considered the multiple allegations against the president to represent a pattern of behavior on his part, rather than a pattern of behavior by his political enemies." (Ariel Edwards-Levy, "Most Hillary Clinton Voters Think The Allegations Against Bill Clinton Are Credible," Huffington Post , 11/15/17)

Politico : "Years Of Excusing Bill Clinton's Sexual Misconduct Suddenly Seems Morally Indefensible" (Politico, Twitter Feed , 11/15/17)

  • The Washington Post 's Columnist, Molly Roberts: "But The Vast Majority Of Democrats Were Loyal To Capo Clinton In The 1990s, And They Stayed That Way Until This Week." (Molly Roberts, Op-Ed, "Democrats Try To Reckon With Bill Clinton's Alleged Sex Crimes," The Washington Post , 11/15/17)
  • The New York Times Contacted "A Dozen Prominent Political Activists Contacted On Wednesday, None Went On The Record On Mr. Clinton's Behalf." "Mr. Clinton has kept publicly quiet amid the flurry of sexual misconduct stories lately, and his office had no comment on Wednesday. But other Democrats were not as willing to come to his defense this week. Of a dozen prominent political activists contacted on Wednesday, none went on the record on Mr. Clinton's behalf." (Peter Baker, "'What About Bill?' Sexual Misconduct Debate Revives Questions About Clinton," The New York Times , 11/15/17)

David Rothkopf, A Former Clinton Administration Official, Said Monica Lewinsky "Deserves An Apology From Many Of Us She Has Never Received." (Peter Baker, "'What About Bill?' Sexual Misconduct Debate Revives Questions About Clinton," The New York Times , 11/15/17)

Ezra Klein: "The Juanita Broaddrick Case Is The Hardest For Admirers Of Bill Clinton… If One Generally Believes It's Important To Believe The Victim, It's Hard To Argue That This Case Should Be An Exception." (Ezra Klein, Twitter Feed , 11/14/17)

Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-CA) On The Treatment Of Bill Clinton's Accusers, "It's Bad." MSNBC's CHUCK TODD: "Let me ask you this. I know you weren't a member of Congress in the '90s. You came to congress in 2008, but you were certainly involved in politics and you worked on Capitol Hill. The democratic response and the victim shaming that took place in the allegations against Bill Clinton, in hindsight, how bad does that look?" REPRESENTATIVE JACKIE SPEIER (D-CA) "Well, it's bad." (MSNBC's "Meet The Press Daily," 11/14/17)

Asked If Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned Over His Inappropriate Relationship With An Intern, Senator Kristen Gillibrand (D-NY) "Took A Long Pause And Said, 'Yes, I Think That Is The Appropriate Response.'" "Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Democrat of New York, who holds Hillary Clinton's former seat, said on Thursday that Bill Clinton should have resigned the presidency after his inappropriate relationship with an intern came to light nearly 20 years ago. Asked directly if she believed Mr. Clinton should have stepped down at the time, Ms. Gillibrand took a long pause and said, 'Yes, I think that is the appropriate response.'" (Jennifer Steinhauer, "Gillibrand Says Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned Over Lewinsky Affair," The New York Times , 11/16/17)

Vice Reporter Eve Peyser: "I Think It's Time To Talk About Juanita Broaddrick. I Believe Her." (Eve Peyser, Twitter Feed , 11/10/17)

The Long-Term Impact Of Bill Clinton

The Atlantic: "The Widespread Liberal Response To The Sex-Crime Accusations Against Bill Clinton Found Their Natural Consequence 20 Years Later In The Behavior Of Harvey Weinstein…" "The widespread liberal response to the sex-crime accusations against Bill Clinton found their natural consequence 20 years later in the behavior of Harvey Weinstein: Stay loudly and publicly and extravagantly on the side of signal leftist causes and you can do what you want in the privacy of your offices and hotel rooms." (Caitlin Flanagan, "Bill Clinton: A Reckoning," The Atlantic , 11/13/17)

  • "Stay Loudly And Publicly And Extravagantly On The Side Of Signal Leftist Causes And You Can Do What You Want In The Privacy Of Your Offices And Hotel Rooms." (Caitlin Flanagan, "Bill Clinton: A Reckoning," The Atlantic , 11/13/17)

Vox's Matthew Yglesias Writes, "Had He Resigned In Shame, We All Might Have Made A Collective Cultural And Political Decision That A Person Caught Leveraging Power Over Women In Inappropriate Ways Ought To Be Fired." (Matthew Yglesias, "Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned," Vox , 11/15/17)

Beyond Critical Think Pieces, The Bill Clinton Reckoning Has Spared Him From The Social Pariah Status That Has Befallen Others In The Last Month

The Atlantic 's Caitlin Flanagan Writes That Bill Clinton Has Yet To Face The "Swift And Pitiless Justice" That Has Befallen Others In The Last Five Weeks. "It was a pattern of behavior; it included an alleged violent assault; the women involved had far more credible evidence than many of the most notorious accusations that have come to light in the past five weeks. But Clinton was not left to the swift and pitiless justice that today's accused men have experienced. Rather, he was rescued by a surprising force: machine feminism. The movement had by then ossified into a partisan operation, and it was willing-eager-to let this friend of the sisterhood enjoy a little droit de seigneur. (Caitlin Flanagan, "Bill Clinton: A Reckoning," The Atlantic , 11/13/17)

Bill Clinton Has A Book Coming Out Next Summer That He Co-wrote With James Patterson And Showtime Has Already Secured The Rights To Adapt The Novel Into A TV Show. "Bill Clinton's mysterious foray into genre fiction, The President Is Missing, won't hit shelves until next summer, but Showtime has already secured the rights to adapt the novel into a TV show, Deadline reports. The book-which Clinton co-wrote with the world's premier paint-by-numbers author, James Patterson-doesn't have much in the way of plot details yet, save for the whole absentee president thing, so it's hard to know what kind of series the adaptation will become." (River Donaghey, "Bill Clinton's Novel Just Got Picked Up for a Showtime Series," Vice , 9/22/17)

  • Only Three Weeks Ago, Showtime Dropped Mark Halperin From A Show Following Allegations Of Sexual Harassment. "Showtime released a brief statement Saturday saying Halperin would not be brought back as a host of 'The Circus' should the political program be renewed. 'The Circus' has two run seasons, and featured Halperin, John Heilemann and Mark McKinnon. Since allegations emerged this week that Halperin harassed numerous women while at ABC in the 1990s and 2000s, Penguin Press has canceled a book that Halperin and Heilemann were writing about the 2016 election and HBO called off a planned adaptation of the book. The journalist also has been suspended from his role as an MSNBC contributor." ("Showtime Drops Mark Halperin From Political Program," The Associated Press , 10/29/17)

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