Twitter calls out Bill Clinton for skipping 1998

The Democratic National Convention Day Two was largely build up for former president Bill Clinton to speak about his wife, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

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Twitter, as interested as it seemed in Bill Clinton's story of how he met, dated and married Hillary Clinton, was more concerned about whether or not he would mention 1998.

It was the year Clinton was impeached following charges that he committed perjury by lying about his relationship -- an extramarital affair -- with then-White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

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But it wasn't mentioned.

What the former president omitted from his speech was a painful time in the couple's relationship when it was revealed he had the affair with Lewinsky and lied under oath about it. From that lie came impeachment charges from the U.S. House of Representatives and a trial in the U.S. Senate.

In case you don’t remember, or wasn’t born yet, here's what happened to Clinton in that missing year.

Was Bill Clinton impeached?

Bill Clinton was impeached by the House of Representatives on December 19, 1998, only one of two presidents to face such an action.

What was he impeached for?

Clinton was impeached on two charges: perjury and obstruction of justice. Two other charges – or articles of impeachment – included a second perjury charge and a charge of abuse of power. Those charges failed in the U.S. House of Representatives.

What does impeached mean?

To impeach means to make a formal charge or accusation of unlawful activity against someone – usually a government official. It does not mean someone has been removed from office. The outcome of an impeachment trial  -- which in the case of the president, is conducted in the Senate -- can result in someone being removed from office, however.

What happened in Bill Clinton’s case?

In 1995, Bill Clinton began a relationship with then 21-year-old Monica Lewinsky, an intern in Clinton’s chief of staff’s office. The affair became more involved, and Clinton and Lewinsky eventually engaged in sexual activity. The affair ended in 1997 when Clinton faced a sexual harassment lawsuit from the time he was governor of Arkansas. Paula Jones, an Arkansas state clerical worker claimed Clinton had harassed her in an Arkansas hotel room.

Lewinsky was called to testify in that civil lawsuit, but she claimed she had not had an affair with the president. Lewinsky’s former co-worker, Linda Tripp, came forward after Lewinski testified to say that she was lying because she, Tripp, had secretly recorded conversations with Lewinsky in which Lewinsky admitted to the affair.

In January of 1998, while Clinton was testifying in the Jones case, was asked if he had a sexual relationship with Lewinski. He denied under oath that he was involved with Lewinski, and said he did not recall ever being alone with her in the White House. It was those denials under oath that were used in the articles of impeachment.

Under pressure to comment on the growing scandal, Clinton, flanked by first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and Vice President Al Gore in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, waged his finger toward the cameras and said: "I want to say one thing to the American people. I want you to listen to me. I'm going to say this again: I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky. I never told anybody to lie, not a single time -- never. These allegations are false. And I need to go back to work for the American people."

For  the better part of a seven months, the president’s  cabinet, vice president and wife spoke out in support of him claiming the charges of sexual misconduct were false and that a “vast right-wing conspiracy” was behind the allegations.

Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr worked to pull together a case against Clinton on charges he lied under oath. On August 6, 1998, Monica Lewinsky was granted immunity from prosecution by  Staff in exchange for testifying against the president. She did, revealing the affair under oath before a grand jury. On Aug. 17, against the advice of his lawyers, Clinton testified before the grand jury via close-circuit TV from the White House. He refused to answer specific questions about a sexual relationship. That night he appeared on TV and told the American people that he, indeed, had an “inappropriate relationship” with Lewinsky.

Starr submitted a report to the House Judiciary Committee in September, claiming that he could prove 11 impeachable offenses committed by Clinton. The House of Representatives drafted four articles of impeachment and voted to impeach Clinton in Dec. 1998. The trial, held by the Senate, began on Jan. 7, 1999 and concluded on Feb. 12, 1999 when the Republicans fell short of the two-thirds majority needed to convict Clinton on the charges.

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