Years before she admitted her own affairs with married men, ABC's Barbara Walters pressed Monica Lewinsky about her affair with a married Bill Clinton: "Did you ever think about what Hillary Clinton might be feeling?" [audio available here]
At the time, the public wasn’t yet aware of Walters’ own affairs. Now, more than nine years later, Barbara Walters has come forward with stories of her affair in her new book "Audition" something former "The View" co-star Star Jones has publicly denounced saying, "It is a sad day when an icon like Barbara Walters in the sunset of her life is reduced to publicly branding herself as an adulterer, humiliating an innocent family with accounts of her illicit affair […] It speaks to her true character."
This new information on Walters sheds some interesting light on her 1999 "20/20" interview with Monica Lewinsky regarding her affair with President Clinton. As MRC Director of Media Analysis
Pres. Bill Clinton interacts with Rev. Jeremiah Wright at a White House prayer breakfast in 1998 at the height of the Monica Lewinsky scandal.
Ten years after the Lewinsky scandal broke, Barbara Walters is still acting as a spokeswoman for Bill Clinton’s former mistress. On the January 21 episode, Walters scolded fellow "View" panelist Joy Behar for incorporating Monica Lewinsky jokes into her comic routine, opining "I don’t think one should joke about it."
Half a decade after observing the fifth anniversary of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, "Good Morning America" correspondent Claire Shipman filed a report on Monday's show that commemorated ten years since the event. Shipman used the January 21 piece to take a swipe at Lewinsky-gate figure Linda Tripp, snidely labeling her "that questionable, tape-recording friend" and pointing out that she "has remade her face and her life." After observing that Tripp has since opened a store selling Christmas trinkets in Virginia, Shipman mused, "Atonement? Simply irony? Who knows?"
During the fifth anniversary segment, on January 16, 2003, this same GMA reporter appeared dismissive of the Lewinsky scandal. She claimed, perhaps hopefully, "It may be, especially in this newly-sobered world, that the Lewinsky episode, as riveting as it seemed at the time, will have little lasting impact, will be little more than a memorable footnote in our political life." A similar tone pervaded Shipman's report on Monday when she described the event as the "national political episode that a decade later, and in a post-September 11th, Iraq-dominated world, seems surreal."
Ten years ago today, a website whose name at the time was unknown to most Americans released information about the President of the United States having an affair with a 22-year-old White House intern.
This eventually led to impeachment proceedings against then President Bill Clinton - which many political analysts feel is a partial cause of the continued acrimony and contentiousness between Democrats and Republicans across the country - whilst also radically changing the journalism industry as we know it.
Lest we not forget how this sad event impacted sexual mores in our nation, unquestionably for the worse.
Given the extraordinary historical importance of this event to America and Americans on so many levels -- and the wife of the president in question currently involved in a presidential campaign of her own -- one has to wonder just how much focus media will give this anniversary today.
Thankfully, we can always count on journalists across the Pond to report that which goes counter to our press's agenda; here's what the British Times had to say about this issue (emphasis added):