Hillary Clinton cannot escape scandal both past and present those of her own, but also those of her husband former President Bill Clinton. A blast from the Clinton scandal filled past Paula Jones has given her first interview since 2001 to the UK Daily Mail, published on Thursday, May 28, 2015. Jones, whose sexual harassment suit against Bill during his tenure as president led to the biggest scandal of his presidency his inappropriate relationship with White House intern Monica Lewinsky; its discovery and then Clinton’s impeachment. Jones felt she had to speak out now to warn the public against voting for Hillary Clinton for the 2016 Democratic nomination and the presidency and the repercussions of doing so.
Jones gave an exclusive interview with the Daily Mail, because as she believes Hillary should not be allowed to be president nor should Bill be allowed back into the White House. Jones says about Hillary, “There is no way that she did not know what was going on, that women were being abused and accosted by her husband. They have both lied.”
Jones tried to remind voters what the Clinton years in the White House were really like and based on Bill’s actions then Hillary should not even be running for president. Jones questioned Hillary’s candidacy and why voters would even want the Clintons’ back, “She should not be running with the terrible history they have,’ ‘Who would want Bill Clinton back a second time, doing the same stuff he was doing before, philandering with women? They have both lied.”
Although Jones is against Hillary Clinton’s bid for the presidency, she is especially adamant against Bill residing in the White House, because of his behavior with women and history of sexual harassment, “He does not have a right to be in the White House to serve the people the way he treated women, sexually harassing women. There were many women that came out and spoke out about what he did to them. He does not have a place in the White House to serve the American people.”
Clinton just joked in his last appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman on Monday, May 12 about his chances he would moved back to the White House should Hillary be elected in 2016. Clinton notified Letterman, “If she wins the election, the chances are 100% I’ll move back – if I’m asked … I hope I’d be invited.” So again with a Hillary Clinton presidency, Americans get two for the price of one, and Bill yet again running amuck in the White House, this time with much less work as the first “first man” or “first mate,” than he did as presidency, and he managed to get in enough trouble with his busy and constant schedule as president.
Jones 48, is now a stay-at-home-mother of three, still living in Little Rock, Arkansas, but in 1994 she burst onto the public scene with her allegations and lawsuit against the then sitting president accusing him of sexual harassment three years before in 1991 when he was the governor of Arkansas and she a clerk with the Arkansas Industrial Development Commission.
Jones was 24 in May 1991, when she was summoned and brought to Clinton’s hotel room at Excelsior Hotel in Little Rock, where he overtly propositioned her. Jones tried to put the incident past her until Clinton’s former bodyguards spoke to the press in 1993, mentioned her name and recounted the incident. Jones was then advised to take what happened make it public and sue Clinton for emotional trauma.
It was the legal battle over $700,000 lasting through a better part of Clinton’s presidency. Naturally, like all his past indiscretions, Clinton denied any wrongdoing and having even met Jones. The court case went all the way to an appeal to the Supreme Court that led to hiring of independent prosecutor Kenneth Starr and the requirement that Bill Clinton submit to a deposition, all of which led to the eventual uncovering of a worse scandal.
During the investigation, Starr discovered that Clinton had an affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, 21. Clinton later denied again any wrongdoing, both to the nation with his famous statement, ‘I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Monica Lewinsky,’ once the media made it public in January 1998 and previously in his deposition. Clinton’s deposition to Jones’ lawyers denying the Lewinsky affair led to his impeachment and near ouster from the presidency.
Ken Starr had proof of Clinton’s affair with Lewinsky, Pentagon worker Linda Tripp became a confident of Lewinsky taping her private conversations, and then there was Lewinsky stained dress, which Tripp knew about. Tripp had also seen an upset and messed up looking Kathleen Wiley leaving Clinton in the Oval Office years before. Refusing to take part in Clinton’s perjury plan for himself and Lewinsky about the affair, Tripp instead handed everything over to Starr for his investigation tipping everything off.
In his August 1998 grand jury testimony, Clinton finally admitted to the affair, and apologized to the public, still that would not be the end. Starr released his infamous Starr Report in September 1998, the culmination of his investigation filled with all the salacious details. Later in that September, the Republican controlled House of Representatives initiated impeachment proceedings for two counts of perjury, obstruction of justice and abuse of power. The House voted to impeach Clinton on December 19, 1998 for perjury and obstruction of justice, but the Democratic controlled Senate then voted to acquit the president after a trial on February 12, 1999.
Clinton’s legal problems were not over Federal District Judge Susan Webber Wright who presided over the Paula Jones case against Clinton cited the president for civil contempt of court in April 1999, where he had to pay a $90,000 fine. Then the case was referred to Arkansas Supreme Court disciplinary committee, who decided on disbarment. Clinton’s Arkansas law license was suspended for five years as of January 2001 when he left the presidency, with that he was also suspended from the US Supreme Court bar. In the end, he settled with Jones for $850,000 although she was appealing the case’s dismissal.
Through this all Hillary Clinton stood by her husband, although privately in the White House she displayed much anger towards him, in public she was dutiful at first claiming it was all a right wing conspiracy. Hillary found sympathy from the public, parleying some of her boost in popularity into a successful bid for a Senate from New York, riding the political wave through to a Democratic presidential candidacy in 2008, Secretary of State and now a second run for the presidency as the clear Democratic frontrunner.
Paula Jones does not find Hillary guiltless in all of her husband’s misdeeds, instead her silence a de-facto condoning of Bill’s mistreatment towards women, and because of that believes Clinton should not run and more so, the American public should not allow Bill Clinton back into the White House. Both Jones and Lewinsky’s public reemergence is reminding Americans about the darker side of the Clinton years.
Yet it is Hillary’s own scandals revolving her emails as Secretary of State, the Benghazi terror attack in September 2012 under her watch in the State Department and Bill’s Clinton Foundation and their questionable foreign donations, that are giving Hillary more problems as she just slightly slips in the polls.
The Democratic field is expanding also chipping away her poll lead, still with near 60 percent support, and consistently beating any Republican candidate in a potential general election matchup it is going to take a special Democratic challenger to beat her in her all but certain quest for the Democratic nomination. Definitely, a charismatic contrast on the GOP’s side is needed to beat her in the general election and prevent Bill’s return to White House living, and a repeat of the Clinton scandals on the news media for four more years.
Bonnie K. Goodman is the Editor of the Academic Buzz Network, a series of political, academic & education blogs which includes History Musings: History, News & Politics. She has a BA in History & Art History & a Masters in Library and Information Studies, both from McGill University, and has done graduate work in Jewish history at Concordia University as part of the MA in Judaic Studies program. She covers US, Canadian & Israeli politics, with a particular focus on the Obama presidency, Congress, domestic policy, and elections.