Diagnosis for Democracy
Insights into the State of Our Union
A Blog by Rob Tenery, MD


Have the Clintons Permanently Tarnished the White House?

By Rob Tenery, MD on February 15, 2016

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton declined on Monday to say if she has been in communication with any of the women involved in the sex scandals during Bill Clinton’s presidency. Asked if she has had any interactions with them, or feels empathy for any of them, Clinton told The Des Moines Register: “No, I have nothing to say and I will leave it to voters to determine whether any of that is at all relevant to their decision.”  The Des Moines Register 1/12/16                                           

There is no way to know what has transpired, over the decades, behind the closed doors of the Oval Office. However, regardless of the resident, there have been certain expectations as to the level of decorum that was shattered when then President Bill Clinton admitted to performing certain ‘sexual acts’ with the intern Monica Lewinsky in that office.

Sometimes, we go to great lengths trying to separate the person from their role in trying to justify a greater good that might be accomplished. An example is how poor ‘bedside manners’ by a doctor is often excused in the context of patient care. Lawyers must offer their best defense, even if they know a client is guilty. Ministers are expected to be respectful of God, even during their own darkest hours. The message is there can never be complete separation between the person and the duty they have chosen to perform.

Although Bill Clinton was not reportedly the only philanderer to hold this country’s highest elected office, he appears to be the first President to conduct himself with such disrespect for his position and to his wife. As President, Clinton can lay claim to many accomplishments that occurred during his tenure. But one claim that will shadow his legacy is that he probably tarnished the reputation of the White House forever. Now, he is back knocking on that door once again. Not in a literal sense, but as the spouse, who has accepted her husband’s errant ways.

Although Hillary Clinton shouldn’t be blamed for her husband’s misdeeds, she is, in many ways, an accomplice. One has to ask, why did and does she put up with Bill’s trysts? Is it because she loves him so much that she will stand by him no matter what he has done? If true, it says a great deal about her-own self-respect. Does she not believe in a monogamous marriage? Being raised as a Methodist, violates her professed religious beliefs concerning marriage. Maybe, their ‘marriage’ is a charade or even an ‘arrangement’--- making her an opportunist, bent on working her way into the White House, once again.

One of Senator Clinton’s main platforms is her stand on women’s rights. Although much in her position is about breaking through the ‘glass ceiling’ with regard to opportunities for women. She is also advocating for equal appreciation of the value of women in society. One then has to question her position, as Secretary-of-State, toward many of the countries in the Middle East that discriminate against those of the female sex. More than that, one has to question her role as the consoling wife of a serial philander.

Hillary would deserve more respect, if she just told Bill to hit the road, while she continued her journey on the campaign trail to the Presidency. Otherwise, she gives us no reason for us to believe that she is anymore than an opportunist with no self-respect. Included in this evaluation would be Hillary’s current email scandal, her knowingly-false position on Benghazi, and the millions of dollars that have poured into the Clinton Foundation while she was serving as Secretary-of State. The word integrity comes to mind. Something both of the Clintons seems to have squandered away years ago.

If she is elected President, it won’t just be four more years of Barack Obama, as many have claimed. It will be four more years with a Clinton in the Oval Office and another ‘nestled’ in the private quarters of the White House!





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