Juanita Broaddrick recently gained an unexpected voice in her corner after publicly accusing former President Bill Clinton of raping her while he was still the Attorney General of Arkansas.
“Put simply, I believe her,” wrote New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg.
On Friday, MSNBC’s Chris Hayes published a tweet saying, “As gross and cynical and [hypocritical] as the right’s ‘what about Bill Clinton’ stuff is, it’s also true that Democrats and the center left are overdue for a real reckoning with the allegations against him.”
Goldberg referenced Hayes’ tweet in her argument for why it was time for Broaddrick’s accusation against the former president to be received by Democrats.
The piece wasn’t without a bit of criticism of the weaponization of Broaddrick’s claim against former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the politicization that appeared to discredit it in the eyes of Democrats. Goldberg even mentioned that she believed some publications on the right were “eager to use the Clinton scandals to derail discussions about Roy Moore.”
Despite this, she argued that “Democrats are guilty of apologizing for Clinton when they shouldn’t have.”
“It’s fair to conclude that because of Broaddrick’s allegations, Bill Clinton no longer has a place in decent society,” Goldberg added. She concluded her piece by warning that certain ways Democrats traditionally approach the topic of sexual violence might be “used against” them by Republicans.
On Monday, Broaddrick responded to comedian Chelsea Handler when she asked her followers to imagine what it was like to be sexually abused by an older man, only to see him win an election. Though Handler was speaking of allegations brought against Moore — the Alabama senatorial candidate accused of sexual misconduct by five women — Broaddrick replied that she had already lived that reality.
“Yeah, @chelseahandler I can imagine. I was raped by the Arkansas [Attorney General] who then becomes Governor & President and NBC held my interview explaining the rape until after his impeachment hearing. But I’m sure you don’t want to go there,” replied Broaddrick.
“I wanted to say to her, ‘I matter too.’ All victims matter. It doesn’t matter if you’re a Democrat or a Republican. Who cares if you’re straight, or if you’re gay, or if you believe in God or not? We all have the right to be believed,” she said of the exchange later that evening.
Though the public has been aware of Broaddrick’s accusation for decades, a tweet she made during the 2016 presidential election about the alleged rape quickly went viral.
Shortly after the tweet was posted, it appeared that Hillary Clinton modified key language on her campaign website regarding sexual assault victims.
An archived September 2015 version of the “Campus sexual assault” portion of her campaign website said, “I want to send a message to every survivor of sexual assault: Don’t let anyone silence your voice. You have the right to be heard. You have the right to be believed, and we’re with you.” The updated website no longer features that statement, and last November it said, “I want to send a message to every survivor of sexual assault: Don’t let anyone silence your voice. You have the right to be heard.” The most recent version of the website says, “This page is a reproduction of the Hillary for America policy proposal on campus sexual assault.”
Broaddrick was invited by President Trump to speak just ahead of a presidential debate last October against Hillary Clinton.