Donald Trump seems to be stretching a bit to drag Bill’s indiscretions into the campaign. Although interpreting Trump’s word salads is a loser’s game, the only decent line of attack seems to be that Hillary is somehow acting unfairly towards women because she somehow attacked, mistreated, or abused the women involved in Bill’s affairs. I just haven’t seen any real evidence of it. The closest thing I’ve read is that in a private conversation, Hillary referred to Monica Lewinsky as “loony tunes.” It’s unclear from the reporting when she said this or whether she intended her comment to be made public or remain private. At the time she said it, she may not have believed Ms. Lewinsky. It’s also understandable that even if Ms. Clinton knew that Ms. Lewinsky was telling the truth, it was a tough time for her too and she may have misdirected her anger in private to an unworthy target for her anger. I can forgive that.
The media I consume is slanted towards Democrats so I realize there might be other instances where Hillary acted unfairly to the other women in Bill’s life. Can you point me to any?
I know it will be hard, but please refrain from talking about whether Bill mistreated women. This is irrelevant to my inquiry. Please also refrain from inferring with no evidence that Hillary somehow participated in other people mistreating these women. I’d like evidence that Hillary herself was somehow complicit in mistreating the women involved in Bill’s affairs. Thanks.
If the entirety of this issue consists of Hillary Clinton saying Monica Lewinksy was “loony tunes” and maybe otherwise talking shit about her, it seems to me that this is a totally human reaction to a massively destructive extramarital affair.
Only if Hillary did something truly extraordinary, like commiting a crime against her (like breaking into her house) or abusing some governmental power (like revoking her passport) can I imagine that Hillary went too far.
This Trump strategy is clearly one of the stupidest political attacks I’ve ever seen, and it fails on so many levels that it is horribly embarrassing that a major party candidate would stoop to such an unconscionably low level. My opinion of Trump was already zero, but now it has gone even lower.
This “strategy” seems to be going against the advice of every single Republican leader, and most of the people on Trump’s campaign team.
This insane tactic, together with Trumps “unhinged” late night twitter attacks against a woman may well lead to another campaign team shakeup (in other words, a bunch more people on Trumps campaign may have had enough.)
I actually think bringing up Lewinsky into an issue could be good for Clinton:
“Everyone who is, or ever has been married, knows that it’s a very difficult road at times. Bill and I hit a very well publicized rough patch due to his marital infidelities. As a couple, and in private, we worked through it and decided that we both were better together than apart. Publicly, while under understandable emotional strain, I lashed out at Ms. Lewinsky and called her “looney tunes” for which I’m very sorry. Marital infidelity is a terrible thing to do to another person, and my husband has apologized to me profusely for what he’s done. But make no mistake, there is only one person in this election for whom marital infidelity has been a personal, and repeated, moral failing.”
I think, if it’s possible to rescue the glimmer of an argument from the verbal diarrhea that is Trump’s typical commentary, it might be this:
Clinton has seemingly adopted, with approval, the general Democratic Party approaches to sexual harassment in the workplace and to the best practices for handling accusations of sexual assault – namely, that the victims should be believed unless strong evidence contradicts them.
This approach was not evident in her own dealings with the accusations surrounding Juanita Broaderick, Paula Jones, Gennifer Flowers, and Monica Lewinsky. To the contrary, she immediately and strongly disbelieved each of them, and assisted in strategies to discredit them, even though we now know at least two of them to have been substantially true.
Therefore, the public is entitled to question whether Mrs. Clinton believes those principles or simply claims to believe them in order to attract votes.
This is pure and simple Trump deflection. Throw something out there that takes the attention off Trump’s stupidity. Expect something like “Hillary said that woman was awful” spun by the Trump campaign into “Hillary threatens lethal revenge on that woman.” I have stopped believing anything they say.
Thanks leftfield. That’s exactly the kind of thing I was looking for. Interestingly, there isn’t much in there. I count:
(1) The private loony tunes comment about Monica Lewinsky and Hillary’s further suggestion that Ms. Lewinsky had misinterpreted her husband’s attention. George Stephanopoulos would later write that she stood by her man and “savaged his enemies.” Whether those enemies included Ms. Lewinsky or only Republican detractors is unclear. The article says nothing about this savaging activity. Ms. Lewinsky said in a Vanity Fair article that she was called an “unstable stalker” by the Clinton White House (which leads only to an unfounded inference that maybe Hillary had something to do with the label) (http://www.vanityfair.com/style/society/2014/06/monica-lewinsky-humiliation-culture). Ms. Lewinsky said in the same piece that, she found Hillary’s “impulse to blame the Woman — not only me, but herself — troubling.” It almost paints Hillary in a sensitive light as another victim of Bill’s actions led to self-blame by her husband’s philandering. There is nothing more about how Hillary participated in the abuse of Ms. Lewinsky. Ms. Lewinsky says worse things about Linda Tripp and Ken Starr. Ms. Lewinsky add, “I wish [the Clintons] no ill.”
(2) Hillary called Gennifer Flowers “some failed cabaret singer who doesn’t even have much of a résumé to fall back on,” and further said that if she had the chance to cross-examine Flowers, “I mean, I would crucify her.” This is certainly not nice.
(3) Following an accusation in Penthouse magazine, which Bill denied, Hillary said "We have to destroy her story.” Interestingly, she didn’t say “we have to destroy her.” She might not have believed the story. The article doesn’t say what the allegation was so I don’t know if this one was well-founded or completely untrustworthy. The article doesn’t say anything about what Hillary did to help destroy the story.
(4) Juanita Broaddrick, who accused Bill Clinton of rape, said “I always felt if [Hillary]’d been a stronger person . . . she could have done something about his behavior.” She doesn’t accuse Hillary of anything and it’s unclear to me why Hillary should be responsible for Bill’s conduct.
All Clinton has to say at the debates is, “Unlike some people, I believe that marriage is a lifelong commitment. And by the way, that was my husband who cheated, like you did on your first wife. But I don’t cheat.” That would pretty much shut his ass up.
Right, the spouse of the accused can believe their spouse and think whatever they want to think. But within the organization, the accusations should be taken seriously and the accuser should be believed and listened to and appropriate actions should be taken. I don’t see any conflict.
Well, if I was helping Trump with his zinger arsenal the rejoinder to that would be “You treated these women as political enemies. This wasn’t ‘stand by your man’; it was about protecting your political future and guarding your secrets”.
1 . Juanita Broadderick refused to testify under oath. She even refused to talk about it publicly, but a Republican “friend” secretly taped her discussing it and offered the tape to reporters. In the end, the friend didn’t actually play the tape for anyone, just wrote a letter with his own summary.
Broaddrick was subpoenaed by the Paula Jones lawyers and gave a deposition saying that Clinton hadn’t made sexual advances. She later recanted the deposition and went on to give tabloid and tv interviews, after the statute of limitations ran out.
Paula Jones accused Clinton of sexual harrassment. The Judge in the trial granted Clinton’s motion for dismissal on the grounds that Jones couldn’t show she’d be harmed in any way. Jones and Clinton eventually settled, but as a lawyer, Bricker, you know what sort of conclusions can be drawn from that.
Gennifer Flowers had a consensual affair with Clinton. She did not claim any sort of sexual harassment charges against him
Monica Lewinsky also had a consensual relationship ship. Some might argue that boss-intern relationships are always a sexual harassment mine trap, but Lewinsky herself insists that the relationship was a mutual attraction.
It would be trivially easy to argue that there is strong evidence against any sexual harassment claims associated with these women.
If you can find a statement where Hillary Clinton - or anyone else for that matter - believes that wives are not entitled to shit-talk their husbands’ mistresses, regardless of their believability, it’d be a better question.
I recognize the spirit in which this view is offered up, but it still strikes me as a bizarre take on the issue.
If someone holds that as a general matter, significant deference is owed to victims of harassment or sexual assault, the implied conclusion is that this principle forces someone NOT to give any real benefit of the doubt to one’s spouse.
I think even the simplest understanding of the obligations of marriage would lead one to initially have some trust in one’s spouse (“in good times and bad, etc”), even if the matter at stake is very serious.
The alternative is that this issue is just a loaded question – “Are you a hypocrite on your support for protecting women from sexual violence, or will you betray your trust in your spouse based on a mere accusation?”
I reject this catch-22, and I have a hard time seeing that giving one’s spouse the benefit of the doubt – even if that later proves to be a mistake – constitutes a serious character flaw.