7 Times Hillary Clinton Was (Wrongly) Held Accountable For Bill
During this election cycle, there's been a fair amount of blaming going around. Donald Trump tends to blame pretty much everyone else for his own actions and for situations totally unrelated to him. For example, he said Megyn Kelly treated him unfairly during a debate. But he also called out Hillary Clinton's aide Huma Abedin in relation to her husband Anthony Weiner's sexting scandals, saying that it was dangerous for a woman connected to Weiner to be so close to the sensitive information Clinton handled. Abedin is not the only woman who has been wrongfully = dragged through the mud for her husband's deeds. Unfortunately, Hillary Clinton is often held responsible for Bill's actions, especially when it comes to their relationship.
In the last 41 years of their relationship, they've ascended to various levels of government and worked through their share of struggles along the way. Because Hillary and Bill have been in the public eye for so long, they've both had plenty of opportunities to make mistakes — and yes, they certainly have made some. But just because Bill didn't always do the right thing, that does not reflect poorly against Hillary. They are two separate people who make their own choices and should not be held accountable for the other's actions.
Here, we look back at the times that Hillary has had to wrongfully answer for her husband.
Juanita Broaddrick's Sexual Assault Allegations
Juanita Broaddrick reportedly met Bill while working at a nursing home in Arkansas that he visited for a campaign stop as Arkansas attorney general. She claimed that Bill told her to contact him when she was in Little Rock, so she did, and said he reportedly wanted to have coffee in her hotel room, away from reporters in the hotel lobby. In an interview with The Washington Post, Broaddrick alleged Bill raped her in her room. Clinton's lawyers called the claim "false and outrageous" and pointed to the fact that Broaddrick had said in a deposition her allegations were untrue before recanting.
As the allegation has arisen again in 2016 — including Broaddrick claiming Hillary threatened her to keep quiet — spokesperson Brian Fallon told The New York Times that the allegations against Bill were attempts to "draw Hillary Clinton decades-old allegations through recent fabrications that are unsubstantiated," and that she has "spent her whole life standing up for women, and that charges to the contrary are grossly unfair and untrue."
Hillary herself, when asked at a campaign stop what she would say to the women who have made accusations against her husband, said, "Well, I would say that everyone should be believed at first until they are disbelieved based on evidence."
Bill's Affair With Monica Lewinsky
After Bill's affair with Monica Lewinsky, blame was placed on Hillary as the wife who "allowed" Bill's transgressions to occur. However, Hillary is not some kind of traitor to women for staying with her husband. Plenty of couples have worked their way through infidelity and made it out the other side.
After the first presidential debate, Trump patted himself on the back for not bringing up Bill's past infidelities. However, even if he did, it wouldn't have been an effective attack. Bill's transgressions are the in the past, Hillary has made clear, and honestly are not her responsibility to answer for.
Bill's Comments On Obama's 2008 Lead In South Carolina
While campaigning in South Carolina in 2008, Bill made a particular nasty gaffe about why then Obama was ahead in the state. According to CNN, when a reporter asked him what it said about Obama that it had taken both Bill and Hillary campaigning for her to try to beat him in the state, Bill responded that "Jesse Jackson won South Carolina in '84 and '88. Jackson ran a good campaign. And Obama ran a good campaign here."
This led people to believe Bill thought Obama's lead was due to his race. Bill ended up looking bad, Hillary ended up losing the state by a landslide, and her campaign was criticized for using identity politics as people began to equate her candidacy with Bill's comments.
Bill Calling President Obama's Policies Awful
While campaigning for Hillary during the 2016 primary, Bill made a comment in defense of his wife that didn't seem to quite go as planned. According to Politico, at a rally, he said voters should support Hillary "if you believe we’ve finally come to the point where we can put the awful legacy of the last eight years behind us and the seven years before that." On face value, that sure sounds like it means that the last eight years of President Obama's administration have been awful.
Clinton campaign spokesperson Brian Fallon clarified that Bill was referring to the Republican obstruction of President Obama as awful, not the president himself, but you can bet Hillary was cleaning up after him as she took to the campaign trail to praise Obama and how she wanted to build on his successful legacy.
Bill Supporting NAFTA
During Bill's presidency, he promoted NAFTA, the trade agreement between America, Canada, and Mexico. Many have accused NAFTA's free trade among the countries of having led to jobs shifting from the U.S. to Mexico. Trump has attacked Hillary for the agreement, which was put in place during Bill's presidency. Also, Bernie Sanders and his supporters hit Hillary for the agreement during his campaign. Despite, you know, her not being the one who implemented the agreement.
Bill & Loretta Lynch Meeting On A Tarmac
At the end of June, Bill met with U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch. According to CNN, they met privately when they both realized they were on the same tarmac at a Phoenix airport. While that doesn't seem so outright bad, the meeting occurred right before the House Benghazi Committee released its report on the 2012 attack, as well as during the Justice Department's investigation into Hillary's private email server. Trump, as well as other Republican leaders voiced concern that the meeting had compromised the investigation, and suggested it should be carried out by a special council.
According to CNN, Lynch confirmed in a statement that they did meet, and that their conversation did not include anything about the Justice Department or Benghazi investigation. "I did see President Clinton at the Phoenix airport as he was leaving and spoke to myself and my husband on the plane," Lynch said. "Our conversation was a great deal about grandchildren, it was primarily social about our travels, and he mentioned golf he played in Phoenix."
Even if the meeting was innocent, it definitely didn't look great for either Clinton.
Bill's Impeachment Trial
Along with the sexual assault and relationship accusations against Bill, what probably has worked against Hillary the most during her presidential campaigns is Bill's impeachment trial. Though the House voted for two charges of impeachment, one charge of perjury for lying under oath about his relationship with Monica Lewinsky, and one of obstruction of justice for having others lie for him to conceal the affair., a majority was not reached in the Senate for any of the charges in the late '90s. The accusations themselves marred Bill's presidency, and certainly have not left voter's minds since, as Hillary opponents use the trial as an attack against her.
In an election that has become so ugly with personal attacks, exaggerations, and flat out lies, it's important to remember to separate political spouses and see them as separate people.