Oy Vey! Clinton defense for Lewinsky affair: It’s in the Talmud


It’s not everyday that the legal defense for a sitting American president’s illicit sexual dalliances with an intern half his age is found in the Hebrew Talmud. But then again, it’s not everyday that the aforementioned presidential sexual dalliance is commemorated in perpetuity on a block of postage stamps from a country that doesn’t really exist. As reported by The New York Post and Great Britain’s The Daily Mail, both on Oct. 11, 2014, during a massive document dump by the Clinton Presidential Library it was revealed that in the closing days of the Bill Clinton presidency, a slew of well-meaning Jewish supporters proffered up a Talmudic defense for his carnal indiscretions that resulted in his impeachment.

Of the 10,000 documents dumped by Clinton’s Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas last Friday, Geoff Earle of the New York Post somehow managed to pull off the herculean task of unearthing a singular 1999 e-mail that relied heavily on the “If it’s good enough for King David, yada, yada, yada” defense. With more twists and turns than the unshorn Pe’ot sidelocks sported by Judaism’s Hasidic menfolk, then-First Lady Hillary Clinton’s domestic-policy adviser, Ruby Shamir, was sent an e-mail from Long Island resident Linda Commodore, who had forwarded a detailed argument from Susannah Heschel, a professor of Jewish studies at Dartmouth and the daughter of noted theologian Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel. Arguably more confusing than Simone Adamley’s explanation of what happened to Ferris, the e-mail in question eventually landing in the lap of “White House adviser and political fixer” Sidney Blumenthal.

According to the message President Clinton’s affair with Lewinsky wasn’t technically adultery according to ancient Hebrew teaching. As reported, the e-mail stated “According to classical Jewish law, President Clinton did not commit adultery; adultery is defined as a married man having intercourse with a married woman, and Monica Lewinsky is single. At worst, President Clinton is guilty of the common sin of onanism [masturbation], a sin that probably afflicts the consciences of most Jewish men at one time or another.”

Undoubtedly causing tremors in the philatelist world, the quasi-nation of the Republic of Abkhazia issued a commemorative set of postage stamps in 1999 that featured cartoon caricatures of a decidedly frat boy looking Clinton and a party girl appearing Lewinsky. Abkhazia is the sliver of land that Russia seized during the 1992 invasion of Georgia. To date, Abkhazia is officially recognized only the the totalitarian governments of Russia, Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Nauru.