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Bill Clinton

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William J. Clinton was born August 19, 1946, in Hope, Arkansas. He received his law degree from Yale in 1973 and was elected Arkansas Attorney General in 1976. He then won governorship of Arkansas from 1979 to 1981 and 1983 to 1992.

Bill Clinton was sworn in as the 42nd president on January 1, 1993. He was one of only thirteen democratic presidents. During his term he achieved many successes. By creating the first balanced budget in decades, Clinton established a budget surplus. He signed the Brady Bill into law November 30, 1993, instituting a 5 day waiting period to buy hand guns. This allowed background checks to be performed and thus preventing sales to criminals. He also signed the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 allowing employees of large companies to take unpaid leave for an illness or pregnancy.

Clinton's proposed health care reform, however, was not a success story. His goal was to come up with a universal health care plan for all Americans. Employers would be required to provide health insurance regulated by HMO's. Clinton's opposition quickly launched a campaign against the plan. Using television advertising, they argued that the plan provided few choices to its patients and was wrong for the middle class. The debate lasted about a year before the Senate announced that the plan was dead. Soon after, Republicans gained control of both houses of Congress.

Clinton's foreign policy, during his first term, was mainly focused on the civil war in Bosnia. He hosted peace talks and they reached a peace agreement known as the Dayton Accords. In 1996, Clinton signed the United States with the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty which prohibited signing nations from testing nuclear weapons. The Senate rejected the treaty. A serious problem for Clinton's administration was a fear that North Korea was creating nuclear weapons and ballistics missiles. North Korea refused to allow international inspectors to review two nuclear waste sites even though they were a signatory of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. They even raised the prospect of war with South Korea, a United States ally. North Korea finally agreed to shut down the nuclear plants if the United States would help them build new plants. The United States also agreed to provide fuel oil for electricity and North Korea agreed to allow inspection of the old waste sites when construction began on the



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