Monday, June 30, 2014

The American Presidents: Bill Clinton

The following is from a work-in-progress called "The American Presidents: a Coloring Book," which will be released at Hibbleton Gallery on the Fourth of July, 2014, during the Downtown Fullerton Art Walk.

Bill Clinton (born 1946) was the 42nd President of the United States.  He earned a Rhodes Scholarship to attend the University of Oxford, where he studied philosophy and participated in Vietnam War protests.  Before becoming president, he was the youngest governor in the country at age 32.  As president, he cut taxes for fifteen million low-income families, made tax cuts available to 90 percent of small businesses, and raised taxes on the wealthiest 1.2 percent of taxpayers.  He presided over the longest period of peacetime economic expansion in American history, with federal budget surpluses of $69 billion in 1998, $126 billion in 1999, and $236 billion in 2000.  He tried to pass health care reform, aimed at achieving universal coverage through a national health care plan, but it was eventually doomed by well-organized opposition from conservatives.  Clinton implemented  “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” which allowed gay men and women to serve in the armed services provided they kept their sexuality a secret, and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defined marriage for federal purposes as the legal union of one man and one woman. In 1998, he was impeached for perjury related to a sex scandal involving White House intern Monica Lewinsky, but  was acquitted by the U.S. Senate.  Military events during Clinton's presidency included a bombing campaign against Yugoslavia in 1999.

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