Former President Bill Clinton became frustrated and somewhat defensive during an interview with NBC’s Craig Melvin, who asked the former President pointed questions about the Monica Lewinsky affair for the first time since the launch of the “#metoo” movement.
In the interview that aired Monday, Clinton said he “did the right thing,” but admitted that he had never personally apologized to Lewinsky — “I have not talked to her,” he said — though he did publicly apologize to her and her family at the time. He also said that considering the way his investigation was handled President Donald Trump’s improprieties are not being given the “coverage you would expect.”
He said he “felt terrible” about the affair back then and has come “to grips with it.”
“Nobody believes I got out of that for free,” he said. “I left the White House 16 million dollars in debt.”
Clinton grew defensive when Melvin asked him to review the case against him in light of the current “#metoo” movement, referencing an essay Lewinsky penned in Vanity Fair earlier this year, suggesting Clinton may have abused his power to his advantage.
Clinton said that Melvin and others in the media are “giving one side” and “omitting facts” about the affair that led to his impeachment. He said he was right in fighting the impeachment proceedings because the facts of his investigation don’t fall in to the same category as other cases that have been spawned by the “#metoo” movement.
“A lot of the facts have been conveniently omitted to make the story work, I think partly because they were frustrated that they got all these serious allegations against the current occupant of the Oval Office,” Clinton told NBC. “And his voters don’t seem to care.”
“Do you think President Kennedy should have resigned? Do you believe President Johnson should have resigned? Somebody should ask you these questions because of the way you formulate the questions,” Clinton told Melvin. “I dealt with it 20 years ago plus and the American people, two-thirds of them stayed with me and I’ve tried to do a good job since then with my life and my work since then and that’s all I have to say to you.”
Watch a clip of the interview below: