The True Stories Behind Episode 2 of ‘Impeachment: American Crime Story’
“The President Kissed Me,” the second episode of Impeachment: American Crime Plot, introduces President Bill Clinton (Clive Owen) into the story as he begins a romance with intern Monica Lewinsky (Beanie Feldstein).
As is typical of true-crime shows, some of the most bizarre scenes in the episode are also the most accurate.
The FX series is based on Jeffrey Toobin’s book A Vast Conspiracy, which includes even more details concerning the Clinton presidency that were not included in the impeachment process.
Continue reading to find out what is true and what is not in Season 3, Episode 2 of American Crime Story.
Shutdown of the federal government
The federal government was shut down from November 14 to November 19, 1995, then from December 16, 1995 to January 6, 1996, after Clinton vetoed a funding bill handed to him by a Republican-controlled Congress.
90 of the 430 White House staff were furloughed during this time, leaving the office to rely on interns – interns like Monica Lewinsky, who worked for Chief of Staff Leon Panetta.
Though it is shown later in the episode, Lewinsky flashed Clinton the top of her thong on the second day of the shutdown (November 15) in an attempt to make good on what she subsequently called “intense flirting” eye contact.
“A licking in the middle of the semester”
In his discussion with Lewinsky, Clinton identifies this as one of his presidency issues. The Republicans won 10 governorships, 8 Senate seats, and 54 House seats in 1994, allowing them to take control of both houses of Congress from the Democrats. This was the first time since 1952 that the party had control of both houses of Congress.
Meeting with JFK by Bill Clinton
Clinton talks about his first trip to the White House, where he shook hands with John F. Kennedy as part of a tour planned by the Boys Nation club, when he first meets Monica.
Clinton was 16 years old at the time of this meeting, which took place on July 24, 1963. The occasion was even documented on film.
“I’m completely smitten with you.”
In her first private meeting with the President, Monica Lewinsky says this. This is a condensed version of the information.