The “Today Show” accused Bill Clinton of mischaracterizing his interview with MSNBC host Craig Melvin, with “Today” host Savannah Guthrie saying on set that the former president was “making false allegations” about his appearance.
“The former president Bill Clinton, expressing some regret over his controversial remarks about Monica Lewinsky here on ‘Today,’ but still making false allegations about that interview, with Craig,” said Guthrie as Melvin sat by her side.
During an appearance on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” and a panel discussion at the New York Times earlier this week, Clinton conceded that the interview was not his “finest hour,” but also took a shot at Melvin and NBC, suggesting that his remarks were selectively edited and that Melvin had falsely asserted that Clinton never apologized for his extramarital affair with Lewinsky.
On set, Melvin and Guthrie shot back at both those points.
“I think the tape speaks for itself,” said Guthrie. “You, of course, did not assert that he never apologized. You asked whether he had apologized.”
Melvin then added that the edits to the interview had been “minor” and that the full broadcast could be found online.
Clinton and author James Patterson have been on a book tour to promote their co-written “The President is Missing.” In light of the #MeToo movement, Clinton has faced new questions about his conduct with Lewinsky. In his sit-down with Melvin, the former president quickly got testy.
“You typically have ignored gaping facts in describing this. And I bet you don’t even know them. This was litigated 20 years ago. Two-thirds of the American people sided with me,” Clinton snapped. “And I’ve tried to do a good job since them with my life and with my work. That’s all I have to say to you.”
The former president also called the #MeToo movement “way overdue,” but defended his decision not let the Lewinsky scandal force him from office.