In an interview with PBS NewsHour last Friday, former President Bill Clinton said something in defense of known pervert and disgraced former Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., that is making heads explode.
Franken resigned from office after he was accused, with photographic evidence, of sexual harassment. PBS’ Judy Woodruff noted that what Franken was accused of was less serious than the allegations levied against Clinton and asked the former president if it was a good thing that “norms have changed.”
Here’s what he said:
FORMER PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON: Well, in general, I think it’s a good thing, yes.
I think it’s a good thing that we should all have higher standards. I think the norms have really changed in terms of, what you can do to somebody against their will, how much you can crowd their space, make them miserable at work.
You don’t have to physically assault somebody to make them, you know, uncomfortable at work or at home or in their other — just walking around. That, I think, is good.
I think that — I will be honest — the Franken case, for me, was a difficult case, a hard case. There may be things I don’t know. But I — maybe I’m just an old-fashioned person, but it seemed to me that there were 29 women on “Saturday Night Live” that put out a statement for him, and that the first and most fantastic story was called, I believe, into question.
Too late to wade into it now. I mean, I think it’s a grievous thing to take away from the people a decision they have made, especially when there is an election coming up again. But it’s done now.
And I think that all of us should just be focusing on how to do better and how to go forward.
Leaving aside how Clinton — who is credibly accused of sexual assault and known to have abused his office to extract sexual favors from a 20-year-old intern — defended Franken when there was photographic evidence of his wrongdoing, New York Times reporter Alex Burns highlighted one eye-popping comment from Clinton.
And this is quite the turn of phrase pic.twitter.com/JZjl4t9WKs
— Alex Burns (@alexburnsNYT) June 11, 2018
“I think the norms have really changed in terms of, what you can do to somebody against their will,” Clinton said.
This raises the obvious question: what exactly, in the context of sexual harassment and abuse, has Bill Clinton ever done to somebody against their will?
To all of you uncritically tweeting a Borowitz column into my timeline today, Bill Clinton has a message for you. pic.twitter.com/xPvbzdXkt5
— Noah Rothman (@NoahCRothman) June 11, 2018
Has a single interviewer asked Clinton about Juanita Broaddrick on this book tour? https://t.co/fVAU06CX1q
— Allahpundit (@allahpundit) June 11, 2018
If Trump said anything like this there would be nonstop 24/7 coverage about it and every Republican would be questioned about it. But because Bill Clinton is a Dem, media has been largely silent https://t.co/wbBCzSIXIK
— Aaron Bandler (@bandlersbanter) June 11, 2018
You'd need oven mitts and pliers to fully unpack this Clinton comment. pic.twitter.com/HkoxSJPRo0
— Caleb Howe (@CalebHowe) June 11, 2018
Judging from the people sounding off on this quote, it sounds like time’s up for Bill Clinton.
Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.
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