The present furor over an alleged White House sexual liaison is only the latest in a string of scandals and investigations that date back to Clinton’s 1992 election campaign and have dogged his administration from its inception.
From the beginning of the Clinton impeachment crisis, the World Socialist Web Site and its predecessor, the International Workers Bulletin, drew attention to the underlying class issues and the implications of the right-wing effort to cripple or remove the Clinton administration for the democratic rights of the working class.
Pointing out the repeated use of sex scandals to shift official politics in America in a reactionary direction, the WSWS explained that the central issue was not President Bill Clinton’s relationship with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, or his lying about it, but the conflict within the American ruling elite and what it revealed about the crisis and decay of American democracy.
In a statement published on December 21, 1998 under the headline, “Is America drifting toward civil war?” the WSWS Editorial Board wrote, “The crisis in Washington arises from an interaction of complex political, social and economic processes. Bourgeois democracy is breaking down beneath the weight of accumulated and increasingly insoluble contradictions. The economic and technological processes associated with the globalization of the world economy have undercut the social conditions and class relationships upon which the political stability of America has long depended.”
The impeachment of Clinton by the US Senate took place in early 1999 and ended in his acquittal, but the right-wing conspiracy continued.
The sex scandal that has rocked the Clinton administration has all the hallmarks of a well-planned “dirty tricks” conspiracy, involving neo-fascist elements within and on the fringes of the Republican Party, covert operations specialists in the national security apparatus, and right-wing propagandists who hold powerful positions in the media.
Amidst all this sick and degrading “commentary” the establishment media shows not the slightest interest in probing the politics that underlie the events that have staggered the presidency.
The latest stage in the Clinton political crisis, centered on his alleged sexual relations with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, marks a coming together of the long-running Whitewater investigation and the lawsuit by Paula Jones.
Notwithstanding the biased and superficial media coverage, what is unfolding under the cover of Starr’s four-year probe—which has jumped from one issue to another, beginning with a 1970s land speculation deal and eventually settling on an alleged sexual relationship—is nothing less than a political coup d’etat.
The decision of independent counsel Kenneth Starr to subpoena White House officials about their contacts with the press raises a direct challenge to First Amendment rights.
"China funds" charges against Clinton
A new front has been opened up in the political warfare in Washington, with claims by congressional Republicans that the Clinton administration agreed to reverse US policy on the export of satellite technology to China after large campaign contributions from aerospace companies and the Chinese government itself.
Clinton’s speech marks a distinct change in tack by the president, who had confined himself since January to legalistic arguments which merely sought to limit the most brazen intrusions into the functioning of the White House.
A political conspiracy, hatched by extreme right-wing and fascistic elements in and around the Republican Party, came very close to effecting a political coup d'etat.
The opening of the Senate impeachment trial will be remembered in history as a critical milestone in the political degeneration and breakdown of the institutions of American democracy.
The fact that all 45 Democratic senators joined their Republican colleagues in approving the procedure for the trial has endowed the proceedings with precisely what they lacked following the impeachment vote in the House of Representatives: a politically-indispensable aura of constitutional legitimacy.
The briefs filed by attorneys for Bill Clinton demonstrate that the impeachment charges against the president have no legitimate legal foundation. If the Senate trial were a genuinely fair legal proceeding, rather than a politically motivated witch-hunt, Clinton's right-wing political enemies would not have a leg to stand on.