William Jefferson ClintonWhen searching for Bill Clinton on the internet, the screen overflows with sites containing subjects such as sex scandal, Monica Lewinsky, His Dark Side, and plenty of twisted joke web pages. Obviously, the people of America think of the lowest point in his presidency instead of focusing on the higher or more important moments. And while its practically impossible to write this report without referring to his scandalous side, it will also spotlight how excellent he was as a president and target interesting facts about his life as a normal American.
On August 19, 1946, William Jefferson Blythe IV began his life in Hope, Arkansas. His mother was still mourning over the loss of her beloved husband who died only three months earlier in a tragic car accident. Four years later, in hopes of a better life, Virginia remarried to Roger Clinton. But as a raging alcoholic, Roger became violent with Bill and his mother. At age 14, young William had enough of the abuse. He finally stood up to his stepfather and the cruelty ceased. After gaining the respect of his father figure, Bill decided to take the last name of Clinton.
Clintons high school years were just as all teenagers desire. He was a popular guy with lots of friends and even then: a drive for success. Bills devotion to playing saxophone led him to consider a life as a professional musician. But after the opportunity to meet president JFK at the White House Rose Garden during his senior year, Bills previous musician dreams did a 180.
If it hasnt already been assumed, Clinton decided this early in life that he would dedicate himself to a life of campaign and politics. He also knew that if he wanted to succeed, he must go about it the correct way. Bill graduated with honors from Yale in 1973 and received his degree in law. The next step was getting into the field of politics in Arkansas.
For those of you who have ever tried to enter the political race, it is obvious as to what Clinton was in for. He was devastated after being defeated in 1974 for Congress Campaign for Arkansas 3rd district. But the powers of devastation were no match for Clintons persistence. Merely three years later, Bill Clinton was elated to be elected Arkansas Attorney General in 1976. This gave him just the confidence boost he needed. In 78, Clinton was sitting high as governor of Arkansas. At 32 years old, Clinton became the nations youngest governor. He failed to be re-elected for a second term, but buckled down to become governor once more four years later. He easily went on to win re-election three more times.
In the midst of all this political excitement, Bill was falling deeply in love. He had met a lovely lady while going to school in Yale. By the time 1975 rolled around, he was sure Hillary Rodham was whom he wished to spend the rest of his life with. They were engaged and married shortly after his decision. Hillary even established her own very successful law practice in Little Rock. Five years afterward marriage, Hillary became pregnant and they were blessed with their only daughter, Chelsea.
By this time in his life, Bill was growing impatient with being just a governor. No way, that was not good enough for him. Clinton had bigger and badder things on his mind, and he was raring to go. The same dream he had since high school was going to become a reality. Bill Clinton announced his intention to seek the 1992 Democratic presidential nomination. All the time he was governor, new ideas, goals, and campaigning tactics had been burning into his mind, just waiting for this moment. Clinton didnt waste a minute to start gaining popularity.
The skills Clinton possessed as a campaigner were outstanding. He had the ability to sharply define issues in his favor. As most everyone does, Bill had the tendency to give in to public opinion instead of trying to shape it. For example, during his campaign in 1992, he revealed that he wore boxers, not briefs. Although completely irrelevant, these remarks are possibly what made him an appealing, down-to-earth president. Shortly following, Bill Clinton was inaugurated as President of the United States in January 1993, after defeating George Bush senior. At 46, he was the youngest US president since John F Kennedy. He won the presidency with 43% of the popular vote and an electoral college landslide. Right there is some hard-core dedication. And that dedication was destined to last. Right of the bat, Bill was overcome by this sobering fact: he had inherited the largest federal budget deficitever! He took that debt and turned it flat around. He gained back a magnificent $230 billion. Even before Clinton became president, he had many goals he would love to see accomplished. Now given the chance to make that become reality, he wanted to work at balancing the budget. He knew it was a long-term goal, but he realized there must be an increase in taxes and major spending cuts.
Not only was the debt a huge problem, he was also stuck with the lowest unemployment rate in over 40 years, the most rapid growth in real wages for more than 20 years, and the biggest drop in welfare rolls ever seen. Clinton worked his tail off to patch up each one of those issues to the best of his capabilities. Whoever said being president was an easy job?Another one of Clintons top priorities was a new health reform. He was met with stiff opposition and critics complained that his proposal would be too expensive. They thought it would lead to government interference in the health care system. What Clinton thought would be one of his best accomplishments was shut down so soon.
All presidents have a particular accomplishment during their time in office that stands out. For Bill, his most enduring legacy will most likely be the economic boom. Shortly after his inauguration, the reforms began. The economy expanded by a massive 50% and the United States was carrying a gross national of $10,000bn. Now it must be recognized that $10,000bn is one quarter of the entire worlds economic output. As mentioned earlier, those low unemployment rates dropped to a 40 year low of 4% because the economy had created around 15 million job opportunities. The stock market was also growing at 100mph. It created thousands of millionaires among middle class stockholders.
So now youre thinking, Wow thats great He really was an awesome president. Hold your horses right there. Just because the economy is booming does not mean there arent some glitches in this system. All of these beautiful changes were swell, but the growth wasnt evenly distributed. That arouses a much larger problem that one might think. The US has the highest rate of inequality of any industrialized country, and that inequality increased during Clinton’s years in office. Bill was unable, or better put, unwilling, to do much to combat that inequality. Some of the policies he embraced were designed to redistribute money to working families. But others, such as welfare reform, meant that even less government support was likely for poor people at the bottom of the income distribution. At the beginning, when Clinton might be considered an amateur president, he was experiencing many of his greatest difficulties regarding the foreign policy realm. Issues concerning Bosnia, Somalia, the former Soviet Union, Haiti, Cuba, North Korea, and Iraq seemed intractable. His inexperience involving these foreign affairs showed when he appeared powerless of establishing a reliable U.S. position on these intimidating tribulations.
Bill Clinton deserves much credit for the fact that he is a fast learner. In no time, Clinton became one of the best presidents ever in dealing with foreign affairs. He has visited more countries than any other president and holds a more sophisticated understanding of international affairs than most of his predecessors. To prove this, Clinton is known for brining about an agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization concerning self-rule for Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Also, in the Balkans, 20,000 American troops were sent to serve as part of an international peacekeeping force.
In 1996, President Bill Clinton went up for re-election with Robert Dole and Ross Perot in opposition. Mr. Clinton received 49% of the popular vote. Evidently, Clinton went on to win the election. His first major accomplishment of his second term was to reach an agreement with congress on how to achieve a balanced budget. His goals were still the same as last term, he was simply trying desperately to carry them out.
It was 1978, and the Clintons and their buddies the McDougals decided to try and make some money. Hillary Clinton did legal work for James and Susan McDougal who owned a savings and loan company. Anyways, they came across 220 acres of riverfront land in Arkansas that they figured would be a good investment. The goal was to sell lots for vacation homes. Things didnt go as well as the four had planned, and the expenses became too much. In 1992, their partnership was dissolved and the Clintons lost an estimated $40,000.
Now youre thinking, Oh thats horrible, too bad it didnt work out. But this isnt your every day loss of investment. There was reasoning as to why they went bankrupt. Even at this point, the government had a clue something fishy was going on. To ease their minds, Kenneth W. Starr was appointed in 1994 to head up a special investigation focusing on the whitewater scandal. Being the professional he was, it didnt take long for McDougal to uncover proof that McDougals Madison Savings and Loan was one of the many that went bust at the taxpayers expense. In simple terms, the McDougals were inventing imaginary people to give loans to. After the paperwork was done, they would keep the loan money to use primarily on their real estate development.
The trials were held in 1996, and the McDougals were eventually convicted of fraud and sentenced to prison time. There was evidence discovered regarding the fraudulent loans, but it couldnt be proved that it involved the Clintons. The mysterious disappearance and rediscovery of billing records showed the degree of Hillary Clinton’s legal work for McDougal’s savings and loan. Missing and under subpoena for two years, they turned up in January 1996 in the Clintons’ private quarters at the White House. President Clinton testified on videotape about one of the loans but was not accused of wrongdoing. The Clintons came through allegation after allegation with their credibility shaken but not destroyed.
In 1998, Starr received permission to expand his investigation again. It was going to be another tough year in the spotlight for Bill. Bill survived Whitewater now he had to get through the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Monica went to work as a White House intern in the summer of 1995 at age 21. She and Bill allegedly had an affair from 1995-1996 that lasted almost a year. Then in 1996, she was transferred out of the White House to the Defense Department. While working there, she became friends with Linda Tripp, whom she told about her Clinton affairs.
Tripp recorded her story and guess who she gave it to– special investigator Starr. Before it was all over, Bill had lied to the grand jury about the affair. He then found himself at his Senate impeachment trial on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice.
Fortunately, it takes a 2/3 vote of the Senate to impeach, and only around half were in favor of it. Bill was acquitted on the charges but was ordered to pay over $90,000 for giving false testimony by the U.S. District Court Judge.
Everyone knows the president had relations with Monica Lewinsky, but what is less known is that plenty of other women may have been part of the scandal. First on the list is Kathleen Willey, a former white house volunteer. She had been having a bad day, and went in to talk to Mr. Clint about her financial troubles. Upon arrival, Willey states that Clinton hugged her, touched her breasts, and put her hand on his aroused genitals. Now naturally, when Mr. Clinton was asked up front, he denied everything but that he had hugged her and given her a possible kiss on the forehead.
Also on the list is Arkansas State clerk Paula Jones. She declared that when Clinton was Governor of Arkansas, she was summoned to his hotel room one night. When she walked in, he dropped his trousers and said, Kiss it. After her refusal, Paula was told to keep quiet about everything. She said later that she was demoted due to the incident.
Gennifer flowers, a former nightclub singer, alleged that she had an affair with the president for 12 years while he was governor of Arkansas. She sold tapes of their telephone conversations and said that he offered her a job in local government in exchange for sexual favors.
Then here we have Hillary Clinton, who has always been fiercely loyal to her husband. When allegations arose about Gennifer Flowers in 1992, they went on TV to talk about it. In public she has criticized many of the allegations, but behind closed doors the two have had some blazing fights. So Clintons time in office was over, and what he was left with is a bit surprising. Bill actually had a brief period of financial problems resulting from the Whitewater and Lewinsky cases. These two cases alone cost him almost 5 million dollars. Adding to that expense, Mr. Clinton owns two houses. One is on Embassy Row in Washington and the other is a mansion in Chappaqua, New York that cost 1.7 million dollars. His yearly presidential pension of $158,100 could not possibly cover these extreme costs.
Trying to get his financial issues back on track, former president Clinton took up speech giving for profit. In the past two years, he has given over 500 speeches in various countries. It is possible for him to make up to $300,000 per speech. Once he straightened all of that out, Mr. Clinton allowed himself to focus on more enjoyable things. For example, he loves to travel, and does so often to see his daughter Chelsea at Oxford University. And naturally, he loves to golf: the most enjoyed sport of middle aged men, surely.It is also not rare to see Bill with a few of his buddies. Jack Nicholson, Kevin Spacey, and Anthony Hopkins are among his acquaintances.
Along with his leisurely activities, he runs an active legal office in Harlem. Politics still play a major role in his life. He recently stated that I hope within five years to be in public service full time.
Drawing a conclusion is not a difficult task, as most people feel similarly about President Clinton. Sure, he was probably the United States most immoral president ever, but theres no denying he was an outstanding president. Bill took care of foreign affairs with ease, carefully examined things before making rash decisions, and was very goal oriented. He is even ranked 5th in terms of his economic management. Seriously he must have been popular considering he was elected a second term. So now theres only one question left to ask. Why are the bad boys always so appealing???