Sen. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandTlaib blasts Biden judicial nominee whose firm sued environmental lawyer The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Connected Commerce Council - Biden faces reporters as his agenda teeters Former aide says she felt 'abandoned' by Democrats who advanced Garcetti nomination as ambassador to India MORE (D-N.Y.) said in a new interview Thursday that former President Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonPerdue proposes election police force in Georgia To boost economy and midterm outlook, Democrats must pass clean energy bill Could the coming 'red wave' election become a 'red tsunami'? MORE should have resigned following the Monica Lewinsky scandal.
When asked by The New York Times if Clinton, who stayed in office after his relationship with the former intern was revealed, should have resigned, Gillibrand said “yes.”
“I think that is the appropriate response,” she told the newspaper.
The Democratic senator also said that “things have changed today” regarding inappropriate sexual conduct.
“I think under those circumstances there should be a very different reaction,” she said. “And I think in light of this conversation, we should have a very different conversation about President Trump, and a very different conversation about allegations against him.”
A spokesperson later told The New York Times that Gillibrand, who endorsed former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNo Hillary — the 'Third Way' is the wrong way The dangerous erosion of Democratic Party foundations The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats see victory in a voting rights defeat MORE for president in 2016, was saying that if Clinton’s inappropriate relationship with Lewinsky had occurred now, he would have been compelled to resign.
Bill Clinton engaged in a sexual relationship with Lewinsky, who was 22 at the time, between 1995 and 1996. It was revealed in 1998.
Bill Clinton denied the inappropriate relationship, but later admitted it occurred, which lead to the Republican-controlled House voting to impeach him in 1998. He was later acquitted of the charges in the Senate and remained in office.
Gillibrand's comments follow allegations of sexual assault levied at Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenMeet the Democrats' last best hope of preserving a House majority Franken rules out challenge against Gillibrand for Senate seat Franken targets senators from both parties in new comedy tour MORE (D-Minn.), who was accused of groping and kissing a woman without her content during a USO tour in 2006.
Leeann Tweeden, a morning radio anchor in Los Angeles, wrote a post on the radio station’s website Thursday in which she said Franken grabbed her breasts while she was sleeping during a USO tour to entertain troops in the Middle East in December 2006.
Tweeden included a photograph of the incident as proof.
Gillibrand said she believed Tweeden’s account and later pledged to donate money she received from Franken’s PAC to Protect our Defenders, a group dedicated to ending the "epidemic of rape and sexual assault in the military."
Gillibrand, along with Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), introduced legislation Wednesday that would overhaul policies to combat and report complaints of sexual harassment on Capitol Hill.