BBC to Hillary: After Weinstein, Do You Regret Dismissing Bill’s Accusers?

British journalist Andy Marr went there. The BBC presenter on Sunday hammered Hillary Clinton in a way that most American reporters wouldn’t dare. After asking her about the Harvey Weinstein scandal, Marr didn’t let this bit of hypocrisy go unchecked from the presidential candidate: “We recognize that this kind of behavior cannot be tolerated anywhere, whether it’s in entertainment, politics.” 

After Clinton suggested that women need to “stand” against abuse from men, Marr shot back: “This depends on women coming forward and having the courage to come forward. And yet in your book, the three women brought onto stage by Trump attacking your husband and you kind of dismissed them. Was that the right thing to do? Were you sure about that?” 

 

 

Marr’s reference was to Trump bringing Juanita Broaddrick, Paula Jones, Kathleen Willey and Kathy Shelton, women who accused Bill Clinton of sexual misconduct, to a 2016 presidential debate with Hillary Clinton. 

Typically, Mrs. Clinton described this all as old news:

CLINTON: Well, yes. Because that had all been litigated. That had been the subject of a huge investigation, as you might recall in the late ‘90s and there were conclusions drawn. And that was clearly in the past. But it is something that has to be taken seriously as I say for everyone, not just for those in entertainment right now. 

Many of the accusations against Weinstein are old as well. Yet, we’re talking about them. Marr didn’t let Clinton off the hook. Instead, he lectured her on hypicrisy: “Nobody wants to blame women for what men do. But, nonetheless, powerful women like you also have a duty to call men out.” 

In 2006, Marr called out his own BBC for bias, saying the network “is not impartial or neutral. It's a publicly funded, urban organisation with an abnormally large number of young people, ethnic minorities and gay people.” He added that the BBC has “a liberal bias, not so much a party-political bias.” 

The BBC presenter refers to himself as a “libertarian.” Perhaps Mrs. Clinton looked at the BBC and simply assumed Marr was typically friendly, liberal territory. 

A partial transcript of the October 15 interview is below: 

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Andy Marr Show
10/15/17
12 minutes in

ANDY MARR: Now, the other big story of the week is, as you know, your friend Harvey Weinstein, who has had a huge slew of really serious allegations made against him. What was your reaction when you first read those allegations? 

HILLARY CLINTON: I was shocked and appalled because I’ve known him through politics as many Democrats have. He’s been a supporter. 

MARR: He’s been a funder. 

CLINTON: He’s been a  funder — you know for all of us. You know, for Obama, for me, for people who have run for office in the United States. So, it was just disgusting and the stories that have come out are heartbreaking. And I really commend the women who been willing to step forward and are able to tell their stories. But I think it’s important we not just focus on him and whatever consequences flow about these stories about his behavior, but that we recognize that this kind of behavior cannot be tolerated anywhere, whether it’s in entertainment, politics — 

MARR: Well — 

CLINTON: After all, we have someone admitting to being a sexual assaulter in the Oval Office. There has to be a recognition that we must stand against this kind of, you know, action that is so sexist and misogynistic. 

MARR: And this depends on women coming forward and having the courage to come forward. And yet in your book, the three women brought onto stage by Trump attacking your husband and you kind of dismissed them. Was that the right thing to do? Were you sure about that? 

CLINTON: Well, yes. Because that had all been litigated. I mean, that had been the subject of a huge investigation, as you might recall in the late ‘90s and there were conclusions drawn. And that was clearly in the past. But it is something that has to be taken seriously as I say for everyone, not just for those in entertainment right now. 

MARR: Absolutely. Nobody wants to blame women for what men do. But, nonetheless, powerful women like you also have a duty to call men out. 

CLINTON: [Pause. Then laughs awkwardly] As I did throughout the campaign! I certainly did. I mean, the really sad part of the campaign was how this horrific tape, what he said about women in the past, what he said about women in the campaign was discounted by a lot of voters. 

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