William Jefferson Clinton is an American politician who served as the 42nd president of the United States from 1993 to 2001.
161 Facts About Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton previously served as governor of Arkansas from 1979 to 1981 and again from 1983 to 1992, and as attorney general of Arkansas from 1977 to 1979.
Bill Clinton is the husband of Hillary Clinton, who was a US senator from New York from 2001 to 2009, secretary of state from 2009 to 2013 and the Democratic nominee for president in the 2016 presidential election.
Bill Clinton was born and raised in Arkansas and attended Georgetown University.
Bill Clinton received a Rhodes Scholarship to study at University College, Oxford, and later graduated from Yale Law School.
Bill Clinton met Hillary Rodham at Yale; they married in 1975.
Bill Clinton presided over the longest period of peacetime economic expansion in American history.
Bill Clinton signed into law the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, but failed to pass his plan for national health care reform.
The Republican Party won unified control of Congress for the first time in 40 years in the 1994 elections, but Clinton was still comfortably re-elected in 1996, becoming the first Democrat since Franklin D Roosevelt to win a second full term.
Bill Clinton appointed Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer to the US Supreme Court.
In foreign policy, Bill Clinton ordered US military intervention in the Bosnian and Kosovo wars, eventually signing the Dayton Peace agreement.
Bill Clinton called for the expansion of NATO in Eastern Europe and many former Warsaw Pact members joined NATO during his presidency.
Bill Clinton was acquitted on both charges as the Senate failed to cast 67 votes against him, which was necessary to meet the two-thirds conviction threshold prescribed by Article I, section 3, clause 6 of the US Constitution.
Bill Clinton's presidency has been ranked among the upper tier in historical rankings of US presidents.
Since leaving office, Bill Clinton has been involved in public speaking and humanitarian work.
Bill Clinton has remained active in Democratic Party politics, campaigning for his wife's 2008 and 2016 presidential campaigns.
Bill Clinton was born William Jefferson Blythe III on August 19,1946, at Julia Chester Hospital in Hope, Arkansas.
Bill Clinton is the son of William Jefferson Blythe Jr.
Bill Clinton's parents had married on September 4,1943, but this union later proved to be bigamous, as Blythe was still married to his fourth wife.
Virginia traveled to New Orleans to study nursing soon after Bill Clinton was born, leaving him in Hope with her parents Eldridge and Edith Cassidy, who owned and ran a small grocery store.
At a time when the southern United States was racially segregated, Bill Clinton's grandparents sold goods on credit to people of all races.
Bill Clinton has described his stepfather as a gambler and an alcoholic who regularly abused his mother and half-brother, Roger Bill Clinton Jr.
Bill Clinton threatened his stepfather with violence multiple times to protect them.
In Hot Springs, Bill Clinton attended St John's Catholic Elementary School, Ramble Elementary School, and whites only Hot Springs High School, where he was an active student leader, avid reader, and musician.
Bill Clinton was in the chorus and played the tenor saxophone, winning first chair in the state band's saxophone section.
In 1961, Bill Clinton became a member of the Hot Springs Chapter of the Order of DeMolay, a youth group affiliated with Freemasonry, but he never became a Freemason.
Bill Clinton briefly considered dedicating his life to music, but as he noted in his autobiography My Life:.
Bill Clinton began an interest in law at Hot Springs High, when he took up the challenge to argue the defense of the ancient Roman senator Catiline in a mock trial in his Latin class.
Bill Clinton has identified two influential moments in his life, both occurring in 1963, that contributed to his decision to become a public figure.
In 1964 and 1965, Bill Clinton won elections for class president.
Bill Clinton is a member of Kappa Kappa Psi honorary band fraternity.
Bill Clinton did not expect to return for the second year because of the draft and so he switched programs; this type of activity was common among other Rhodes Scholars from his cohort.
Bill Clinton had received an offer to study at Yale Law School, and so he left early to return to the United States and did not receive a degree from Oxford.
Bill Clinton was a member of the Oxford University Basketball Club and played for Oxford University's rugby union team.
Bill Clinton was planning to attend law school in the US and knew he might lose his deferment.
Bill Clinton tried unsuccessfully to obtain positions in the National Guard and the Air Force officer candidate school, and he then made arrangements to join the Reserve Officers' Training Corps program at the University of Arkansas.
Bill Clinton subsequently decided not to join the ROTC, saying in a letter to the officer in charge of the program that he opposed the war, but did not think it was honorable to use ROTC, National Guard, or Reserve service to avoid serving in Vietnam.
Bill Clinton further stated that because he opposed the war, he would not volunteer to serve in uniform, but would subject himself to the draft, and would serve if selected only as a way "to maintain my political viability within the system".
Bill Clinton registered for the draft and received a high number, meaning that those whose birthdays had been drawn as numbers1 to 310 would be drafted before him, making it unlikely he would be called up.
Bill Clinton issued a notarized statement during the 1992 presidential campaign:.
Bill Clinton eventually moved to Texas with Rodham in 1972 to take a job leading McGovern's effort there.
Bill Clinton spent considerable time in Dallas, at the campaign's local headquarters on Lemmon Avenue, where he had an office.
Bill Clinton was elected governor of Arkansas in 1978, having defeated the Republican candidate Lynn Lowe, a farmer from Texarkana.
Bill Clinton was only 32 years old when he took office, the youngest governor in the country at the time and the second youngest governor in the history of Arkansas.
Bill Clinton worked on educational reform and directed the maintenance of Arkansas's roads, with wife Hillary leading a successful committee on urban health care reform.
Bill Clinton joined friend Bruce Lindsey's Little Rock law firm of Wright, Lindsey and Jennings.
Bill Clinton became a leading figure among the New Democrats, a group of Democrats who advocated welfare reform, smaller government, and other policies not supported by liberals.
Bill Clinton delivered the Democratic response to Reagan's 1985 State of the Union Address and served as chair of the National Governors Association from 1986 to 1987, bringing him to an audience beyond Arkansas.
The Arkansas Education Standards Committee was chaired by Bill Clinton's wife Hillary, who was an attorney as well as the chair of the Legal Services Corporation.
Bill Clinton defeated four Republican candidates for governor: Lowe, White, Jonesboro businessmen Woody Freeman, and Sheffield Nelson of Little Rock.
However he might have felt previously, by 1992, Bill Clinton was insisting that Democrats "should no longer feel guilty about protecting the innocent".
In 1987, the media speculated that Bill Clinton would enter the presidential race after incumbent New York governor Mario Cuomo declined to run and Democratic front-runner Gary Hart withdrew owing to revelations of multiple marital infidelities.
Bill Clinton decided to remain as Arkansas governor.
Bill Clinton gave the nationally televised opening night address at the 1988 Democratic National Convention, but his speech, which was 33 minutes long and twice the length it was expected to be, was criticized for being too long and poorly delivered.
Bill Clinton presented himself both as a moderate and as a member of the New Democrat wing of the Democratic Party, and he headed the moderate Democratic Leadership Council in 1990 and 1991.
Bill Clinton fell far behind former Massachusetts senator Paul Tsongas in the New Hampshire polls.
Bill Clinton finished second to Tsongas in the New Hampshire primary, but after trailing badly in the polls and coming within single digits of winning, the media viewed it as a victory.
However, former California governor Jerry Brown was scoring victories and Bill Clinton had yet to win a significant contest outside his native South.
Bill Clinton scored a resounding victory in New York City, shedding his image as a regional candidate.
Bill Clinton argued the questions were moot because all transactions with the state had been deducted before determining Hillary's firm pay.
Bill Clinton was still the governor of Arkansas while campaigning for US president, and he returned to his home state to see that Ricky Ray Rector would be executed.
Bill Clinton repeatedly condemned Bush for making a promise he failed to keep.
Bill Clinton then pointed to his moderate, "New Democrat" record as governor of Arkansas, though some on the more liberal side of the party remained suspicious.
The chief factor was Bill Clinton's uniting his party, and winning over a number of heterogeneous groups.
Bill Clinton presided over the longest period of peacetime economic expansion in American history.
Bill Clinton was physically exhausted at the time, and had an inexperienced staff.
Bill Clinton had repeatedly promised to encourage gays in the military service, despite what he knew to be the strong opposition of the military leadership.
Bill Clinton tried anyway, and was publicly opposed by the top generals, and forced by Congress to a compromise position of "Don't ask, don't tell" whereby gays could serve if and only if they kept it secret.
Bill Clinton devised a $16-billion stimulus package primarily to aid inner-city programs desired by liberals, but it was defeated by a Republican filibuster in the Senate.
Public opinion did support one liberal program, and Bill Clinton signed the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, which required large employers to allow employees to take unpaid leave for pregnancy or a serious medical condition.
On February 15,1993, Bill Clinton made his first address to the nation, announcing his plan to raise taxes to close a budget deficit.
Two days later, in a nationally televised address to a joint session of Congress, Bill Clinton unveiled his economic plan.
Bill Clinton's advisers pressured him to raise taxes, based on the theory that a smaller federal budget deficit would reduce bond interest rates.
The raid had originally been planned by the Bush administration; Bill Clinton had played no role.
On September 22,1993, Bill Clinton made a major speech to Congress regarding a health care reform plan; the program aimed at achieving universal coverage through a national health care plan.
On November 30,1993, Clinton signed into law the Brady Bill, which mandated federal background checks on people who purchase firearms in the United States.
Bill Clinton expanded the Earned Income Tax Credit, a subsidy for low-income workers.
Brock later apologized to Bill Clinton, saying the article was politically motivated "bad journalism", and that "the troopers were greedy and had slimy motives".
Bill Clinton's defenders argued that an executive order might have prompted the Senate to write the exclusion of gays into law, potentially making it harder to integrate the military in the future.
Later in his presidency, in 1999, Bill Clinton criticized the way the policy was implemented, saying he did not think any serious person could say it was not "out of whack".
On January 1,1994, Bill Clinton signed the North American Free Trade Agreement into law.
On July 29,1994, the Bill Clinton administration launched the first official White House website, whitehouse.
The Omnibus Crime Bill, which Clinton signed into law in September 1994, made many changes to US crime and law enforcement legislation including the expansion of the death penalty to include crimes not resulting in death, such as running a large-scale drug enterprise.
Bill Clinton condemned homophobia and discrimination against people with HIV.
Bill Clinton announced three new initiatives: creating a special working group to coordinate AIDS research throughout the federal government; convening public health experts to develop an action plan that integrates HIV prevention with substance abuse prevention; and launching a new effort by the Department of Justice to ensure that health care facilities provide equal access to people with HIV and AIDS.
On September 21,1996, Bill Clinton signed into law the Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage for federal purposes as the legal union of one man and one woman; the legislation allowed individual states to refuse to recognize gay marriages that were performed in other states.
Paul Yandura, speaking for the White House gay and lesbian liaison office, said Bill Clinton's signing DOMA "was a political decision that they made at the time of a re-election".
In defense of his actions, Bill Clinton has said that DOMA was intended to "head off an attempt to send a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage to the states", a possibility he described as highly likely in the context of a "very reactionary Congress".
Bill Clinton pushed for passing hate crimes laws for gays and for the private sector Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which, buoyed by his lobbying, failed to pass the Senate by a single vote in 1996.
Bill Clinton came out for gay marriage in July 2009 and urged the Supreme Court to overturn DOMA in 2013.
Bill Clinton was later honored by GLAAD for his prior pro-gay stances and his reversal on DOMA.
In November 1996, Bill Clinton narrowly escaped possible assassination in the Philippines, which was a bridge bomb planted by al-Qaeda and was masterminded by Osama bin Laden.
Bill Clinton received 379 of the Electoral College votes, with Dole receiving 159 electoral votes.
That year, Hillary Bill Clinton shepherded through Congress the Adoption and Safe Families Act and two years later she succeeded in helping pass the Foster Care Independence Act.
Bill Clinton negotiated the passage of the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 by the Republican Congress.
On May 19,1993, Bill Clinton fired seven employees of the White House Travel Office.
Special counsel Robert Fiske said that Hillary Bill Clinton was involved in the firing and gave "factually false" testimony to the GAO, congress, and the independent counsel.
Bill Clinton was only the second US president to be impeached.
Impeachment proceedings were based on allegations that Bill Clinton had illegally lied about and covered up his relationship with 22-year-old White House employee Monica Lewinsky.
Bill Clinton issued 141 pardons and 36 commutations on his last day in office on January 20,2001.
In 1993 and 1994, Bill Clinton pressured Western European leaders to adopt a strong military policy against Bosnian Serbs during the Bosnian War.
Bill Clinton deployed US peacekeepers to Bosnia in late 1995, to uphold the subsequent Dayton Agreement.
In 1992, before his presidency, Bill Clinton proposed sending a peace envoy to Northern Ireland, but this was dropped to avoid tensions with the British government.
In November 1995, in a ceasefire during the Troubles, Bill Clinton became the first president to visit Northern Ireland, examining both of the two divided communities of Belfast.
Bill Clinton sought to continue the Bush administration's policy of limiting Iranian influence in the Middle East, which he laid out in the dual containment strategy.
In 1994, Bill Clinton declared that Iran was a "state sponsor of terrorism" and a "rogue state," marking the first time that an American President used that term.
In February 1996, the Bill Clinton administration agreed to pay Iran US$131.8million in settlement to discontinue a case brought by Iran in 1989 against the US in the International Court of Justice after the shooting down of Iran Air Flight 655 by the US Navy guided missile cruiser.
Bill Clinton signed the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998 on October 31,1998, which instituted a policy of "regime change" against Iraq, though it explicitly stated it did not provide for direct intervention on the part of American military forces.
Bill Clinton died in 2006, before the completion of the trial.
Bill Clinton aimed to increase trade with China, minimizing import tariffs and offering the country most favoured nation status in 1993, his administration minimized tariff levels in Chinese imports.
Bill Clinton initially conditioned extension of this status on human rights reforms, but ultimately decided to extend the status despite a lack of reform in the specified areas, including free emigration, treatment of prisoners in terms of international human rights, and observation of human rights specified by UN resolutions, among others.
Bill Clinton brought Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian Authority chairman Yasser Arafat together at Camp David for the 2000 Camp David Summit, which lasted 14 days in July.
Bill Clinton appointed two justices to the Supreme Court: Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 1993 and Stephen Breyer in 1994.
Bill Clinton was the first president in history to appoint more women and minority judges than white male judges to the federal courts.
In May 2006, a CNN poll comparing Clinton's job performance with that of his successor, George W Bush, found that a strong majority of respondents said Clinton outperformed Bush in six different areas questioned.
Gallup polls in 2007 and 2011 showed that Bill Clinton was regarded by 13 percent of Americans as the greatest president in US history.
When Bill Clinton played the saxophone on The Arsenio Hall Show, he was described by some religious conservatives as "the MTV president".
Opponents sometimes referred to him as "Slick Willie", a nickname which was first applied to him in 1980 by Pine Bluff Commercial journalist Paul Greenberg; Greenberg believed that Bill Clinton was abandoning the progressive policies of previous Arkansas Governors such as Winthrop Rockefeller, Dale Bumpers and David Pryor.
Bill Clinton drew strong support from the African American community and insisted that the improvement of race relations would be a major theme of his presidency.
In 1998, Nobel laureate Toni Morrison called Bill Clinton "the first Black president", saying, "Bill Clinton displays almost every trope of blackness: single-parent household, born poor, working-class, saxophone-playing, McDonald's-and-junk-food-loving boy from Arkansas".
Bill Clinton later agreed to an out-of-court settlement and paid Jones $850,000.
In 1998, Kathleen Willey alleged that Bill Clinton had groped her in a hallway in 1993.
In 2018, Bill Clinton was asked in several interviews about whether he should have resigned, and he said he had made the right decision in not resigning.
Bill Clinton admitted to having extramarital affairs with singer Gennifer Flowers and Monica Lewinsky.
Bill Clinton has continued to be active in public life since leaving office in 2001, giving speeches, fundraising, and founding charitable organizations, and has spoken in prime time at every Democratic National Convention.
In 2002, Bill Clinton warned that pre-emptive military action against Iraq would have unwelcome consequences, and later claimed to have opposed the Iraq War from the start.
In 2005, Bill Clinton criticized the Bush administration for its handling of emissions control, while speaking at the United Nations Climate Change conference in Montreal.
In 2005, Bill Clinton announced through his foundation an agreement with manufacturers to stop selling sugary drinks in schools.
Bill Clinton's foundation joined with the Large Cities Climate Leadership Group in 2006 to improve cooperation among those cities, and he met with foreign leaders to promote this initiative.
Bill Clinton spoke in favor of California Proposition 87 on alternative energy, which was voted down.
Fears were allayed August 27,2008, when Bill Clinton enthusiastically endorsed Obama at the 2008 Democratic National Convention, saying all his experience as president assures him that Obama is "ready to lead".
In 2009, Bill Clinton travelled to North Korea on behalf of two American journalists imprisoned there.
Since then, Bill Clinton has been assigned many other diplomatic missions.
Bill Clinton organized a conference with the Inter-American Development Bank, where a new industrial park was discussed in an effort to "build back better".
In 2010, Bill Clinton announced support of, and delivered the keynote address for, the inauguration of NTR, Ireland's first environmental foundation.
At the 2012 Democratic National Convention, Bill Clinton gave a widely praised speech nominating Barack Obama.
Bill Clinton served as a member of the electoral college for the state of New York.
Bill Clinton voted for the Democratic ticket consisting of his wife Hillary and her running-mate Tim Kaine.
In 2020, Bill Clinton again served as a member of the United States Electoral College from New York, casting his vote for the successful Democratic ticket of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.
In October 2021, Bill Clinton was treated for sepsis at the University of California, Irvine Medical Center.
Bill and Hillary Clinton have each earned millions of dollars from book publishing.
Bill Clinton earned more than $104million from paid speeches between 2001 and 2012.
In June 2014, ABC News and The Washington Post reported that Bill Clinton has made more than $100million giving paid speeches since leaving public office, and in 2008, The New York Times reported that the Clintons' income tax returns show they made $109million in the eight years from January 1,2000, to December 31,2007, including almost $92million from his speaking and book-writing.
Bill Clinton has given dozens of paid speeches each year since leaving office in 2001, mostly to corporations and philanthropic groups in North America and Europe; he often earned $100,000 to $300,000 per speech.
Hillary Clinton said she and Bill came out of the White House financially "broke" and in debt, especially due to large legal fees incurred during their years in the White House.
In 2002, a spokesperson for Bill Clinton praised Epstein as "a committed philanthropist" with "insights and generosity".
In 2002 and 2003, President Bill Clinton took four trips on Jeffrey Epstein's airplane: one to Europe, one to Asia, and two to Africa, which included stops in connection with the work of the Bill Clinton Foundation.
However, later reports showed that Bill Clinton had flown on Epstein's plane 26 times.
In July 2019 it was reported that Bill Clinton attended a dinner with Epstein in 1995, a meeting with Epstein that Bill Clinton had not previously disclosed.
Bill Clinton is the maternal grandfather to Chelsea's three children.
Bill Clinton received an honorary degree from Georgetown University, his alma mater, and was the commencement speaker in 1980.
Bill Clinton is an honorary fellow of University College, Oxford, which he attended as a Rhodes Scholar, although he did not complete his studies there.
Bill Clinton was presented with the Medal for Distinguished Public Service by Secretary of Defense William Cohen in 2001.
Bill Clinton has been honored in various other ways, in countries that include the Czech Republic, Papua New Guinea, Germany, and Kosovo.
Bill Clinton was selected as Time "Man of the Year" in 1992, and again in 1998, along with Ken Starr.
From a poll conducted of the American people in December 1999, Bill Clinton was among eighteen included in Gallup's List of Widely Admired People of the 20th century.
Bill Clinton has been honored with a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for Children, a J William Fulbright Prize for International Understanding, a TED Prize, and was named as an Honorary GLAAD Media Award recipient for his work as an advocate for the LGBT community.
Bill Clinton declared at the ceremony that "in the United States of America, I really don't believe former American presidents need awards anymore, but I am very honored by this one, I love Haiti, and I believe in its promise".
Bill Clinton is one of the narrators on Wolf Tracks and Peter and the Wolf, a 2003 recording of Sergei Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf performed by the Russian National Orchestra, on Pentatone, together with Mikhail Gorbachev and Sophia Loren.
The audiobook edition of his autobiography, My Life, read by Bill Clinton himself, won the 2005 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album as well as the Audie Award as the Audiobook of the Year.
Bill Clinton has two more Grammy nominations for his audiobooks: Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World in 2007 and Back to Work in 2012.