Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

June 25, 2009


Sam Smith - A number of liberal blogs have used the extracurricular sex activities of Mark Sanford and John Ensign as evidence that Bill Clinton was unfairly impeached for having sex with Monica Lewinsky.

This is a myth that liberals have been fostering for more than a decade but isn't true. Clinton was impeached for lying, not for laying. The charges were perjury, obstruction of justice and abuse of power - not blow jobs.

While it is true that a major factor in the case was his relationship with Monica Lewinsky, it was relevant not because it was about sex but because Paula Jones, who had sued Clinton for sexual harassment, was developing evidence of a pattern of behavior that would support her case. Thus for Clinton to lie would be a direct infringement of her rights as a plaintiff in a sexual abuse case. Strikingly, not a single major women's group came to Jones' defense or, for matter, the defense of any of the other women who accused Clinton of sexual misconduct. The women's movement joined other liberals and the media in treating these women as little better than whores.

This was a key indicator of the transformation of liberalism from representing the interests of ordinary citizens to a movement protecting the interests of the more successful of its genre which continues to this day.

The Senate, in not convicting Clinton, was acting on the rules of politics rather than of the law. Clinton was held in contempt of court by a judge and his law license was suspended first in Arkansas and than by the Supreme Court. He was also fined $90,000 and settled with Jones for $850,000.

In no way was Clinton a victim in the case


Anonymous Mairead said...

I certainly hold no brief for Clinton, Sam. I despise him.

But I don't think his being held in contempt or having his law licence suspended is probative of anything except more politics, and I'm really surprised that you would suggest that it is.

And your assertion that "for Clinton to lie would be a direct infringement of her rights as a plaintiff" is frankly bewildering: what law or principle says he had an obligation to help her make her case against him? Can you offer a citation for that?

Aren't there enough real reasons to abominate Clinton? I can't believe it's helpful to invent spurious ones.

June 25, 2009 10:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Plus the evil son of a bitch got away with murder. Not just Vincent Foster, but thousands of Canadian and French hemophiliacs who received blood products collected from infected prisoners by the Arkansas prison system while Clinton was governor - blood tainted with HIV and Hepatitis C, among other things.

June 26, 2009 3:07 AM  
Blogger m said...

I am no fan of Clinton, but did he ever call for anyone to resign for lying about extramarital sex? The hypocrisy is enough for Sanford's resignation.

June 26, 2009 12:53 PM  

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