Monica Lewinsky Says She'd Been 'A Virgin To Humiliation' In First TV Interview In 11 Years
Monica Lewinsky, in her first TV interview since 2003, is opening up about the scandal of her relationship with President Bill Clinton and the humiliation she suffered as a result.
Monica Lewinsky: 'I was a virgin to humiliation'
Lewinsky, now 40, had more or less disappeared into relative obscurity over the last 10 years – though her name is still trotted out in punch lines and analyses of Hillary Clinton’s chance at a bid for the presidency. After penning an essay for Vanity Fair earlier this year, Lewinsky agreed to sit down for an interview for the National Geographic Series special The 90s: The Last Great Decade?.
On Sept. 11, 1998, Kenneth Starr’s report, which provided all known details of the then intern’s sexual relationship with Bill Clinton, was publicly released. As a result, Lewinsky became the most notorious woman in the country.
"That was one of the worst days of my life. I was a virgin to humiliation of that level until that day,” Lewinsky said. "To have my narrative ripped from me, and turned into The Starr Report, and things that were turned over or things they delved out of my computer that I thought were deleted. I mean, it was just violation after violation."
Lewinsky added, "To be called stupid, and a slut and a bimbo, and ditzy, and to be taken out of context, it was excruciating.”
In her Vanity Fair essay, Lewinsky endeavored to put the scandal behind her by offering a pointed apology and attempting to put out persisting rumors. “It’s time to burn the beret and bury the blue dress,” wrote Lewinsky. “I, myself, deeply regret what happened between me and President Clinton. Let me say it again: I. Myself. Deeply. Regret. What. Happened.”
“Sure, my boss took advantage of me, but I will always remain firm on this point: it was a consensual relationship,” Lewinsky added later. “Any ‘abuse’ came in the aftermath, when I was made a scapegoat in order to protect his powerful position."
The 90s: The Last Great Decade? will air Sunday at 9 p.m. EST on the National Geographic Channel.