Monica Lewinsky deliberately stayed under the radar during Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential quest, but fears “becoming an issue” should Clinton run again.
That’s what the now-40-year-old former White House intern wrote in the upcoming June edition of Vanity Fair.
“Recently I’ve found myself gun-shy yet again,” she wrote, “but should I put my life on hold for another 8 to 10 years?”
Publicity surrounding the affair Lewinsky engaged in with President Bill Clinton from 1995 to 1997 and which allegedly involved nine encounters that stopped short of intercourse, destroyed what chance she had at a career, she contends.
Lewinsky wrote that she has been denied numerous jobs due to “what potential employers so tactfully referred to as my ‘history.'”
The former handbag designer, who obtained a master’s degree in social psychology from the London School of Economics after the scandal, said she has “managed to get by (barely, at times) with my own projects, usually with start-ups that I have participated in, or with loans from friends and family,” and deeply regrets “what happened between me and President Clinton.”
Lewinsky maintains that her liaison with the married commander in chief was an affair between consenting adults.
“Sure, my boss took advantage of me, but I will always remain firm on this point: It was a consensual relationship. Any ‘abuse’ came in the aftermath, when I was made a scapegoat in order to protect his powerful position,” Lewinsky wrote.
The suicide of Tyler Clementi, the 18-year-old Rutgers freshman who was secretly filmed kissing another man, has helped to kindle a new career goal for Lewinsky: Getting “involved with efforts on behalf of victims of online humiliation and harassment and to start speaking on this topic in public forums.” After all, Lewinsky noted, she is “possibly the first person whose global humiliation was driven by the Internet.”