Consensual Affair ≠ Sexual Harrassment

Bill Bennett: “It is hypocritical in the extreme for those members of the media who didn’t take the charges and allegations against Bill Clinton seriously to be taking the allegations against Herman Cain that we now have as seriously as they are. Hypocritical is probably too soft a word, frankly.”

Except Bill Clinton stood accused of cheating on his wife, in a tawdry but consensual affair. Herman Cain, instead, has been accused by no less than five women of using his power to attempt to extract sexual favors. One of those is much, much worse than the other, John Derbyshire’s shocking sexism notwithstanding.



  1. Paula Jones
    Kathleen Willey
    Juanita Broaddrick
    Elizabeth Ward Gracen
    Sally Perdue
    Dolly Kyle Browning

  2. Question: what harassing actions was Cain accused of? I ask because I do not know and it matters for determining how much I will hate him.

    See, there’s a broad spectrum of things that get labeled sexual harassment, and while at the severe end they’re really sexual assault and should be labeled as such, at the other end you’ve got all the non-physical bases for hostile environment. So the specific form of the alleged harassment is really important for me to know.

  3. Re: Lewinsky, I would say that it’s problematic to speak of consensuality when one party is an intern, and the other one is the President of the United States. No matter what, there will be issues of pressure when so different power levels are involved.

    More to the point, the Lewinsky case is 15 years now, which is in the realm of political paleontology. Trying to use that as a defence for Cain… that’s just very, very sad.

    1. And following Lewinsky, Mr. Clinton was Impeached and tried (though acquitted) for his conduct in denying the affair. So far all Mr. Cain has had is a lot of (probably accurate) press attention.

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