Photographer: Shawn Thew/The Washington Post/Getty Images
Photographer: Shawn Thew/The Washington Post/Getty Images

The Hillary-Clinton-for-President crowd has several causes for concern; none of them involve Monica Lewinsky.

The former Secretary of State, first lady and senator is a formidable front-runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. Yet worries persist about an overly protective inner circle as well as her myriad of free-lancing supporters. Questions about her health and whether someone who has been front-and-center on the public stage for almost a quarter-century can be a candidate for change also have merit.

Recently, however, Republicans have floated a new issue: her husbands' dalliance with an intern while he was president. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, and his wife, contended this should hurt Clinton's credibility with female voters.

Nonsense.

Consider:

• When Bill Clinton left office on Inauguration Day in 2001 -- three years after the Lewinsky scandal broke -- he was a very popular president; and he is even more popular today.

• Hillary Clinton won two U.S. Senate campaigns in New York and ran for the president in 2008. During those races her husband's White House affair was a non-issue.

• Over the course of her four years as Secretary of State, Clinton's effectiveness or standing as a diplomat certainly wasn't affected by her husband's previous indiscretions.

For Hillary-haters: sorry, she'll be judged on her own. A two-decade-old scandal involving her husband, ventilated more thoroughly than ever imaginable, won't impact Clinton's probable candidacy.

(Albert R. Hunt is a Bloomberg View columnist. Follow him on Twitter @AlHuntDC.)

To contact the writer of this article: Al Hunt at ahunt1@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this article: Alex Bruns at abruns@bloomberg.net.