The Clintons both want to be on the campaign trail this summer, stumping for Democrats who want to help retake the House and Senate from Republican control. But Democrats have other ideas: Hillary has already been relegated to private appearances only, and now Bill is being asked to stay out of the public eye over concerns he might bring up some "uncomfortable" memories about the days before #MeToo.
According to Politico, Democrats have labeled Bill "too toxic" for the mid-term elections, and they're looking for ways for the former president to be useful without attracting attention over his long legacy of sexual impropriety, especially while other Democrats are campaigning on platforms to do more about workplace sexual harassment.
“I think it’s pretty tough,” the vice chair of the House Progressive Caucus told the Washington news magazine. His presence, she continued, “just brings up a lot of issues that will be very tough for Democrats. And I think we all have to be clear about what the #MeToo movement was.”
If there's anyone who doesn't quite belong in the #MeToo era it is, of course, Bill Clinton.
While his wife was campaigning for president, Bill Clinton routinely took Hillary's lead in brushing off questions about his checkered history with female subordinates. Even though women who accused him of sexual harassment showed up at press conferences and did friendly interviews, Democrats brushed off Clinton's misbehavior as simply a part of history.
Once the Clintons were safely removed from White House contention, however — and no longer of use to the Democratic Party — Bill Clinton's behavior turned from merely historical to presently problematic. Even Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, widely considered to be Hillary Clinton's heir apparent in the presidential race the way she was in the Senate, distanced herself from Bill, telling media that she believed Clinton should have resigned over the infamous Monica Lewinsky affair.
The Clintons and their allies are desperate to convince Americans that they are still relevant, though, and sources close to Bill Clinton absolutely assure friendly media that he's been fielding a number of offers to appear on the trail this summer. It just happens to be too far out to book.
"[T]here are people who want him, I promise you,” James Carville told Politico.