Carl Bernstein suggested this week Hillary Clinton's ability to blur the line between fact and fiction comes from her years of defending Bill Clinton from women who say they've had some form of sexual relationship with the 42nd president.
The Democratic presidential candidate, Bernstein said, has a tenuous relationship with the truth. So much so, he added, that she is now something of a "specialist" in "fudging" the facts.
"Why has she become a kind of specialist?" the renowned Watergate reporter asked after Clinton's widely-criticized interview on CNN. "It has to do, I think, with the peculiarity of the Clinton situation. It had partly to do with the history of Bill Clinton and women in which she's had to defend him. It's been very difficult to do with the whole truth and nothing but the truth."
CNN's Alisyn Camerota pressed Bernstein on his point, asking if Clinton's years of being scrutinized by political opponents has pushed her more and more to "fudge her answers."
"First of all, we have to look at what politicians do generally in terms of fudging. It's endemic in the profession," Bernstein said. "She's been in a difficult position."
"[I]f you really understand her life, her great strengths and her weaknesses, you begin to understand the complexity. Look, she's the most famous woman in the world. She's sui generis as it were," he added. "All over the world this morning, people are having the discussion we are having at their breakfast tables. It's remarkable, this phenomenon. We have to look at this election in a little bit different terms and her in a little bit different terms than anybody else, and her situation."
Bill Clinton has in the past admitted to engaging in extramarital affairs with multiple women, including former White House intern Monica Lewinsky and former model Gennifer Flowers.
Then there are the claims of sexual assault.
In 1993, a former Arkansas state employee, Paula Jones, accused Clinton of luring her into his hotel room in 1991 and sexually harassing her. A federal judge in Little Rock, Ark., threw out Jones' case in 1998.
Separately, a former White House volunteer aide, Kathleen Wiley, accused Clinton of groping her in 1993. An independent counsel said in a report released in 2002 that, "there was insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that President Clinton's testimony regarding Kathleen Wiley was false." The counsel declined to prosecute Clinton and the case was closed.
A former Arkansas nursing home administrator, Juanita Broderick, has also accused Clinton of sexual assault, claiming in an interview in 1998 that the former president had raped her in 1978.