Recently Heidi Heitkamp-endorsed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has been making political hay on the whole “rape culture” thing by saying that women who make rape accusations deserve to be believed.
"To every survivor of sexual assault…You have the right to be heard. You have the right to be believed. We're with you." —Hillary
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) September 14, 2015
So, on that note, a woman at one of Clinton’s campaign events in New Hampshire today asked her about the women who accused her husband of rape. “Would you say that about Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, and/or Paula Jones?” the woman asks (video above).
As a refresher, Jones sued Bill Clinton for sexual harassment. Willey accused him of sexual assault, and Broaddrick said the former president raped her, allegations she maintains to this day.
Clinton’s response is an interesting one: “I would say that everybody should be believed at first until they are disbelieved based on evidence.”
That is not how the criminal justice system works. The accused have a presumption of innocence. If we say that we always believe the accusers until they are “disbelieved” or proven wrong, then we are saying that we are assuming the accused are guilty until proven innocent.
A completely upside down notion that is incompatible with a just judicial proceedings, though it is exactly what “rape culture” fabulists and hysterics actually believe. Clinton actually got a spattering of applause from the crowd for that nonsensical answer.
The question was obviously a plant – the woman who seemed to be reading it didn’t exactly pronounce the names right – but so what? It’s a valid question. Clinton herself is making rape accusations a part of her campaign, so it’s only fair to ask about the multiple accusations of sexual impropriety leveled at her husband.
Frankly Senator Heitkamp, who has made much of her time as North Dakota’s Attorney General and has championed women’s issues, should answer the questions too. Not only has Heitkamp endorsed Hillary Clinton, but Bill Clinton campaigned for her twice in North Dakota and arguably contributed to her narrow 2012 election victory.