Tweets About Bill Clinton's Monica Lewinsky Comments Are 1998 All Over Again
Former President Bill Clinton was on NBC's Today on Monday to talk about his new book, but the interview took a turn when he was asked about the affair that led to his impeachment more than 20 years ago. Growing heated, Clinton said he never apologized to Monica Lewinsky personally. Now, people are posting tweets about what Clinton said about Lewinsky and arguing whether the Clinton and Lewinsky relationship should be viewed in the lens of the #MeToo movement.
Clinton was asked about the affair by NBC's Craig Melvin, who brought up recent critics who have suggested that Clinton should have resigned at the time. The most controversial part of Clinton's response came when he was asked whether he thought he owed Lewinsky an apology. Clinton said:
No, I do not — I have never talked to her. But I did say publicly on more than one occasion that I was sorry. That's very different. The apology was public.
He said several times that his public apology was sufficient. "I dealt with it 20 years ago plus, and two-thirds of the American people sided with me," Clinton said. The former president also suggested that he had faced consequences as a result of the scandal, pointing out he was millions of dollars in debt leaving the White House. Clinton also said he had empowered women throughout his political career.
Before getting upset, Clinton said that he didn't feel differently about the situation in the wake of #MeToo movement because he already "felt terrible then."
Lewinsky penned an op-ed in Vanity Fair in March. She took responsibility for her role in the affair, but she also wrote,
He was my boss. He was the most powerful man on the planet. He was 27 years my senior, with enough life experience to know better. He was, at the time, at the pinnacle of his career, while I was in my first job out of college.
Twitter re-litigated the matter on Monday after the Clinton interview aired.
1. Several Remarked On How Clinton Grew Heated
He did accuse Melvin of "omitting facts" to prevent "one side" of the story.
2. Clinton Was Accused Of Making Himself The Victim
Clinton pointed out he had suffered as a result of the affair.
3. Some Women Weren't Surprised
"Of course he doesn't," wrote Sarah Jones.
4. Others Didn't Think She Deserved An Apology
Consent played a big role in many of the arguments online.
5. Then There Were The Clinton-Trump Comparisons
Clinton also brought up Trump in his answer, saying that the current president's actions are a reason why this conversation is happening.
6. The Media Was Attacked, Too
Their focus on this story from the '90s was criticized.
7. A Comparison With Tonya Harding
Another critic of Lewinsky pointed to consent.
8. The Public Apology
C-SPAN posted the public apology Clinton gave.
9. And Lewinsky's Op-Ed
Vanity Fair also joined the conversation, posting a link to the op-ed Lewinsky wrote for them.
10. GIF Shock Happened, Too
Most people didn't expect their Monday morning to be spent discussing this.
11. More Media Critiques
The idea here being that Trump's sexual misconduct led to the question being asked of Clinton.
12. It's A Gray Area
Consent and the workplace come up again and again.
13. Trump Jr. Couldn't Help But Join The Fray
No words... just tweets.
14. Some Media Praise
Not something you'll read much of.
15. And Meanwhile, Lewinsky's Day
Helaine Olen points out that there's a reason Lewinsky can't move on from what happened 20 years ago.
The Twitterverse can't agree on much. And Clinton's lack of a private apology to Lewinsky is no exception.