Photographer: Shawn Thew/The Washington Post/Getty Images

Monica Won't Affect Hillary in 2016

Albert R. Hunt is a Bloomberg View columnist. He was the executive editor of Bloomberg News, before which he was a reporter, bureau chief and executive Washington editor at the Wall Street Journal.
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The Hillary-Clinton-for-President crowd has several causes for concern; none of them involve Monica Lewinsky.

The former Secretary of State, first lady and senator is a formidable front-runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. Yet worries persist about an overly protective inner circle as well as her myriad of free-lancing supporters. Questions about her health and whether someone who has been front-and-center on the public stage for almost a quarter-century can be a candidate for change also have merit.

Recently, however, Republicans have floated a new issue: her husbands' dalliance with an intern while he was president. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, and his wife, contended this should hurt Clinton's credibility with female voters.



• When Bill Clinton left office on Inauguration Day in 2001 -- three years after the Lewinsky scandal broke -- he was a very popular president; and he is even more popular today.

• Hillary Clinton won two U.S. Senate campaigns in New York and ran for the president in 2008. During those races her husband's White House affair was a non-issue.

• Over the course of her four years as Secretary of State, Clinton's effectiveness or standing as a diplomat certainly wasn't affected by her husband's previous indiscretions.

For Hillary-haters: sorry, she'll be judged on her own. A two-decade-old scandal involving her husband, ventilated more thoroughly than ever imaginable, won't impact Clinton's probable candidacy.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg View's editorial board or Bloomberg LP, its owners and investors.

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Albert R Hunt at