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Bill Clinton


Last Updated: Thursday, 27. May 2004 22:26 -0400

Iran - Contra Incident
Bill Clinton
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Why did Clinton get into the office of President?

William Jefferson Clinton was the 42nd president of the United States from 1992 – 2001. he was elected in 1992 and again in 1995. He beat his opponents, George Bush and Ross Perot, in the election of 1992. Bill Clinton won with 43.4%. Bush followed closely with 37.7% and Ross Perot had the losing 19%. This was the first president in six decades to be elected for two terms who was democratic. Many things the Clinton wanted to change in the United States government were social reforms. Things like lower taxes, gun control, lower teen violence rate, and other programs about medical care. In the election of 1995 Clinton captured 49% of popular vote, the electoral vote was 379 to 159. Bob Dole, who was against Clinton in the election, got 41%.

The Going Through of the Clinton Reforms

The Clinton administration was off to a shaky start because of all the criticism toward their campaign for promised end to discrimination against gay men and lesbians in the military. The people who opposed the campaign were mainly conservatives and military leaders. Clinton also promised to institute a system of universal health insurance. Clinton created the Task Force on National Health Care Reform, which was headed by his wife, Hillary Clinton. The Task Force tried to propose the Health Security Act but failed to pass by the legislation. Clinton’s first term was marked by numerous successes, including the passage by Congress of the North American Free Trade Agreement, which created a free-trade zone between the United States, Mexico, and Canada. Passed thirty some major bills related to women and family issues, including the Family and Medical Leave Act and the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act. Clinton appointed many women and minorities into significant governmen! t posts throughout his administration. Example: Janet Reno as attorney general. By 1994 the Republicans gained a majority in both houses of Congress for the first time in 40 yrs. Clinton being a Democrat feared for his position, so he offered a more aggressive deficit reduction plan and a massive overhaul of the country’s welfare system while still opposing the Republican efforts to stop so much spending on social programs.

Clinton also did much for foreign policies. A successful effort in September and October of 1994 to reinstate Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who had been ousted by a military coup in 1991, was accomplished. Peace talks and the eventual Dayton Accords in 1995 aimed to end the ethnic conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 1993 Clinton invited the Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestine Liberation Organization chairman Yasir Arafat to Washington to sign a historic agreement that granted limited Palestinian self-rule in the Gaza Strip and Jericho.

This is where the scandals begin. A fellow Arkansan who had been part of the White House administration committed suicide. Former associates were indicted and convicted of crimes; and rumors of sexual impropriety involving the president persisted. During Clinton’s first term, Attorney General Reno approved an investigation into business dealings by Clinton and his wife with an Arkansas housing development corporation known as Whitewater. Led from 1994 by independent counsel Kenneth Starr, the Whitewater inquiry consumed several years and more than $50 million without turning up any conclusive evidence of wrongdoing by the Clintons. Starr expanded the investigation and uncovered evidence of an affair between Clinton and White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Clinton repeatedly and publicly denied that the affair had taken place. In his testimony he responded to one question with the sentence, “It depends on what the meaning of the word is”. After conclusive evidence of the affai! r surfaced, Clinton publicly apologized to his family and to America. The Senate acquitted Clinton of the charges in 1999. Despite his impeachment, Clinton’s job approval rating remained high. Foreign affairs – Clinton ordered a four-day bombing campaign against Iraq in December 1998 in response to Iraq’s failure to cooperate fully with the UN weapons inspectors. Clinton became the first American President to visit Vietnam since the end of the Vietnam War. Peace agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians finally established and the visits to Ireland hailed him as a peacemaker. After Clinton left office he issued a number of pardons, including one to the former spouse of a major Democratic Party contributor. Clinton remained active in politics and his wife, Hillary Clinton, went on to launch her candidacy for the New York Senate seat just vacated by Democrat Daniel Patrick Moynihan. She was the first wife of a US president to win elected office.

How did Clinton influence people of the US at this time period?

Clinton was a Democrat who created scandal throughout the United States as well as the rest of the world. He did not make many reforms throughout his presidency but he did try. The people turned from him as well as the Democratic candidates for the next election, a Republican won, because of his deception of the American people. Many looked up Americans with disgust. The American opinion turned from Clinton and social reforms were put on a halt.

The impact of the future was the career for Hillary Clinton and the downfall of the Democrat for that time period.