It’s not unusual for politicians to bend the truth when making accusations about opposing candidates’ records, but what some conservatives accused Bill Clinton of doing during his term in office was far beyond the norm.
Although it’s now largely forgotten, a myriad of dubious allegations faced Clinton during the 1990s, including allegations that he was a serial murder, serial rapist and drug dealer (and the accusations went on, and on, and on).
Above: The First Couple, 1993-2001
So many accusations were alleged against the Clintons that in 1998, then-First Lady Hillary Clinton claimed that there was a “vast right wing conspiracy” against her family.
One of the most well known conservative smear merchants during the 1990s was a conservative magazine called the American Spectator. The Spectator was then financed by a conservative billionaire who funded an effort with the blanket purpose “to unearth damaging information about President Clinton.” It published numerous reports accusing Clinton of all kinds of wrongdoings, many of the most significant of which were written by a journalist named David Brock.
Brock, then a best selling conservative author, helped fabricate scandals including one in which Clinton supposedly engaged in sexual encounters arranged for him by Arkansas State Troopers. It was later revealed that the troopers interviewed for the story were bribed, and Brock recanted all of his conservative reporting, effectively ending his career as an admitted “right wing hit man.”
After exposing more conservative hoaxing designed to bring down the president, Brock later founded the nonprofit group Media Matters for America, a liberal group which seeks to undermine elements of conservative bias in the media. The crusade against the Clintons was also written about in the book and film The Hunting of the President.
Browse the entire Forgotten History Library, visit the homepage, or subscribe to
Ye Olde RSS Feed.