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Woman Bill Clinton had 'affair' with to attend US presidential debate

  • Published at 08:18 am September 25th, 2016
  • Last updated at 08:46 am September 25th, 2016
Woman Bill Clinton had 'affair' with to attend US presidential debate
Gennifer Flowers, a former model who had an extramarital sexual encounter with former US president Bill Clinton during the ‘80s, has reportedly accepted an invitation from Donald Trump to sit in the front row during Monday night’s presidential debate, BuzzFeed News, The Guardian and the New York Post report. Flowers herself confirmed the report on Saturday with a tweet: “Hi Donald. You know I’m in your corner and will definitely be at the debate!” BuzzFeed News then reported that Judy Stell, an aide to Flowers, said in an email that though Flowers had previously declined invitations to public events because she did not want to be a sideshow, “Ms Flowers has agreed to join Donald at the debate”. The Trump campaign and Flowers did not immediately respond to requests for comment from both the New York Post and The Guardian. In response hours later, Jennifer Palmieri, the Clinton campaign's communications director, said in a statement: "Hillary Clinton plans on using the debate to discuss the issues that make a difference in people's lives. It's not surprising that Donald Trump has chosen a different path."  Earlier on Saturday, the brash billionaire rump threatened on Twitter to invite a woman who'd had an affair with Hillary Clinton's husband to sit in the first row at their first debate, in retaliation to Clinton campaign’s invitation to Mark Cuban, a fellow billionaire and Trump rival, to the event. On Thursday, Cuban tweeted that he had “just got a front row seat to watch @HillaryClinton overwhelm @realDonaldTrump at the ‘Humbling at Hofstra’ on Monday. It Is On!” The Trump campaign and Flowers did not immediately respond to requests for comment from both the New York Post and The Guardian. The 90-minute face-off in Hempstead — the first of three planned presidential debates — begins at 9pm (EST) Monday, moderated by NBC’s Lester Holt. Clinton, who trails Trump in several state and national polls, may have more to lose if her performance is underwhelming, analysts say. If Trump, on the other hand, avoids significant errors and refrains from personal attacks, he could emerge victorious, said observers. But the presence of Flowers, and the specter of resurrecting 1980s Bill Clinton scandals, could turn the debate into a nasty slugfest. The revelation of Flowers’ affair with Bill Clinton — the first of many “bimbo eruptions,” as his inner circle called them — nearly derailed his White House hopes in 1992, one month before the New Hampshire primary. Rumors of infidelity had haunted Clinton from the moment he announced his candidacy, but when Flowers told a supermarket tabloid that she and the governor had carried on a torrid, decade-plus relationship, he and wife Hillary sat for an awkward “60 Minutes” interview to save the campaign. Bill Clinton admitted that he had “caused pain” in his marriage, but would not confess to the relationship with Flowers — or admit to having obtained a state job for her. Instead, he maintained that his private life had no place in the presidential campaign and refused to say whether he had ever committed adultery. [youtube id="lwXE52e9JFg"] The next day, a furious Flowers called a press conference at New York’s Waldorf-Astoria Hotel to tell 200 reporters that Clinton had been “absolutely lying” by denying their affair. She played 15 minutes of phone conversations between the two in which Clinton instructed her to lie about having been his lover. [youtube id="FggF-fMXlSk"] Bill Clinton remained in the race, though his poll numbers took a beating. He was dubbed “The Comeback Kid” when he took second place in New Hampshire and went on to win the Democratic nomination. Six years later, Flowers was vindicated when lawyers for Paula Jones, who had accused Clinton of sexual harassment, forced him to admit under oath that Flowers had been telling the truth.
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