- - Monday, August 17, 2015

18-year olds all over the nation are heading into their first week of classes today.

On this date (August 17) in 1998, when the current crop of collegiate freshman were just learning to walk, sitting President Bill Clinton admitted in taped testimony that he had an “improper physical relationship” with White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

For seven months prior to the revealing, Clinton had denied any improper relationship. But after evidence came to light that proved otherwise, Clinton had little choice but to admit to the affair. He did so first to the Office of Independent Counsel and the grand jury.

Then, he addressed the nation—admitting some wrongdoing but then turning his attack back onto the investigators (full transcript here).

Clinton said:

As you know, in a deposition in January, I was asked questions about my relationship with Monica Lewinsky. While my answers were legally accurate, I did not volunteer information.

Polls taken immediately after the revelations indicated that the American public felt that the investigators had done enough and that Clinton had admitted enough: “Nothing more to see. Move on.”

Clinton became the first sitting President to have to testify about his conduct to a grand jury. The testimony came about after Kenneth Starr issued a subpoena one month earlier, on July 25, 1998. 

Next year’s Democratic National Convention kicks off on July 25.

As Watergate is to Marco Rubio or Ted Cruz, the typical college student (18-22 year old) has no personal recollection of these events. The sands of time fall fast.

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