Private Lives: How Relevant?

Here we go again. Last week two New York City tabloids, the Post and the Daily News, suddenly front-paged some old allegations about past extramarital activities by Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton, the media-crowned Democratic front runner. And thus, with a heartfelt squeamishness that outsiders will find hard to credit, the American press takes up some unfinished business from four years ago: deciding what to publish about presidential candidates' private lives.

The Gary Hart follies of the 1987-88 campaign left the issue unresolved. But the particulars of that episode established a standard few future candidate sex scandals could hope to match: the...

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