Monica Lewinsky Partners with Sustainable Clothing Brand in Campaign to Boost Voter Registration

Source: Flickr/TED Conference / Freepik

Monica Lewinsky became a household name back in the late nineties. For a long time, her name was associated with a presidential scandal. Today, she’s using her notoriety to support democracy by collaborating with a sustainable clothing brand to register voters.

Who Is Monica Lewinsky?

Monica Lewinsky served as a White House intern from 1995 to 1997. President Bill Clinton was in office and Lewinsky got the job when she was just 22. In her time at the White House, she engaged in a sexual relationship with then-President Clinton.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Clinton White House

Lewinsky was transferred out of the White House in 1997 when her supervisor noticed she was spending a lot of time with the President. Her so-called friend Linda recorded private conversations with Lewinsky. The affair became public and a scandal ensued.

What Were The Repercussions Of The Clinton/Lewinsky Affair?

An extramarital affair between private citizens might lead to separation or divorce.Bill Clinton’s affair with his vulnerable intern had wider-reaching consequences. Not only did he cheat on his wife, he also lied to Congress about their affair when asked.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/User:LordHarris

The result was that the US House of Representatives voted to impeach Bill Clinton. Impeachment is the accusation of wrongdoing, typically “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Clinton’s impeachment was the first since the impeachment of Andrew Johnson in 1868.

Was Bill Clinton Removed From Office?

After the House impeached Bill Clinton, there was an impeachment trial in the Senate. The Constitution requires the Senate to try impeached officials. The rules say that two thirds of the Senate must vote for conviction for a President to be removed.

Source: National Review/Blake Sell

The Senate did not convict Bill Clinton and he wasn’t removed from office. In the end, only 45 Senators voted for conviction and 55 voted against. That was far short of the number required for conviction. Bill Clinton served out his term and left office on January 20, 2000.

Did Monica Lewinsky Tell Her Side Of The Story?

It’s not surprising that Lewinsky became a celebrity of sorts after the affair with Clinton became public and she played a role in the impeachment trial. She testified before a grand jury and gave a closed-door deposition to members of Congress.

Source: X/@nypost

Lewinsky’s testimony was not public and she testified under an immunity agreement. That meant that Clinton was acquitted, she was not allowed to speak publicly about details of the affair. It was impossible for her to defend herself and her life was difficult.

Who Was Monica Lewinsky’s Biggest Critic?

After spending time outside of the United States and cycling through several careers, Monica Lewinsky kept her head down. She resurfaced in 2015 to give a TED Talk about shame. In the talk, she spoke of her experience after the impeachment

Source: Flickr/Steve Jurvetson

She spoke of how harsh her inner voice was. She said, “Hearing myself say out loud what I say to myself, the silent bully in my head, was devastating.” She became an advocate for anti-bullying campaigns and encouraged people to banish negative self-talk.

Lewinsky’s Family Kept Her Alive

Despite her progress, Lewinsky still remembers how difficult her life was after the Clinton affair. She reports that her mother made her keep the bathroom door open when she showered. She also checked her every night because she knew her daughter didn’t want to live.

Source: Daily Mail/A and E

She said of her family, “I was very lucky, very lucky that way. I can’t imagine what it would be like to go through what I did or any sort of a crucible and not have that support of the people who’ve known you your whole life and know you most intimately.”

What Did Lewinsky Say About Bill Clinton’s Autobiography?

One of the most painful periods in Lewinsky’s life happened when Bill Clinton published his autobiography, My Life. After reading it, Lewinksy spoke of her disappointment in Clinton’s version of their affair, which she felt was evasive and unfair to her.

Source: NBC News/Richard Lewis

She said, “This was a mutual relationship, mutual on all levels, right from the way it started and all the way through. I don’t accept that he had to completely desecrate my character.” There can be arguments about whether an affair with such a significant power gap could be mutual, but it’s clear Lewinsky was hurt.

What’s Monica Lewinsky Doing To Help With Voter Registration?

On February 26, sustainable clothing brand Reformation unveiled a new election campaign. They have launched campaigns for the past two presidential elections. This third campaign focuses on voter registration and Lewinsky is the spokesperson.

Source: The Reformation Page

Reformation has teamed with Lewinksy and The goal of the campaign is to provide necessary information to consumers to help them exercise their right to vote. Lewinsky said that she joined the campaign because of her concern about voter apathy and frustration.

What Has Lewinsky Said About The Reformation Campaign?

Lewinsky said, “We all have to be reminding each other that we can’t let that get in the way of needing to vote, that that’s how we use our voice,” she said. “That’s where our power is.” Her powerful words are inspiring.

Source: The Reformation Page

On the Reformation landing page, Lewinsky models work clothes including a red two-piece business suit and a leather trench coat. On the page, she says, “If you wanna complain for the next four years, you gotta go out and vote.”

Lewinsky On Empowering Women

Part of Lewinsky’s plan is to use her fame to inspire and empower women. She said, “I don’t know if this will sound corny but I think a way that women can feel more empowered is by recognizing places that they may need more assistance and asking for that assistance.”

Source: USA Today/Charles Rex Arbogas

She told Elle Magazine that turning 50 had brought many gifts into her life. “It was a year of acceptance. I was able to accept so much about myself and my life and where I am.” Pairing with Reformation is something she hopes will bring more women to the polls in November.

How Can Voter Registration Make The World A Better Place?

The sad fact is that only 66% of eligible voters took part in the 2020 presidential election. It might be tempting to blame the COVID-19 pandemic. However, participation was higher than it was in the 2016 election.when 61.4% of eligible citizens voted.

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Chitrapa

Lewinsky believes that voting is one of the best ways to improve the country we all love. She hopes that the Reformation campaign will get women excited about the power they can wield at the polls. Abortion rights are on the ballot in many states, and that may drive turnout.

How Can Women Protect Themselves Online?

While Lewinsky’s most recent efforts are focused on voter registration, she also has a lot to say about how women can protect themselves online. She learned the hard way how necessary it is to find ways to shield ourselves from negativity.

Source: Pexels Mikhail Nilov

“I am a huge, huge proponent of blocking. You want to say something, that’s your prerogative. I don’t have to listen to you.” Said another way, there’s no requirement to attend every argument you’re invited to. Sometimes silence is the best policy.

What Role Will Voter Registration Play In The Election?

It’s a common assumption that high voter turnout favors the Democratic Party. Younger voters tend to have lower participation than older voters. High turnout among the youngest voters may favor President Joe Biden’s reelection campaign when Election Day arrives on November 5.

Source: The Journal News/Frank Becerra Jr.

It remains to be seen how many voters will go to the polls because of Reformation’s campaign with Monica Lewinsky. Regardless of the election’s outcome, Lewinsky can be proud of her work to encourage voting to protect our democracy.

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Aimee Partridge

Written by Aimee Partridge

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