And given the race’s tight final margins — Mr. Clinton rattled off some figures from memory — he speculated that “maybe the Russians did have a decisive impact,” though he said a “sneeze could have tossed it.”
He and James Patterson said one of the plots of their new novel, “The President Is Missing,” revolved around cybersecurity. Mr. Patterson said the goal was to write “a beach read that also has some importance.”
As a first-time novelist, Mr. Clinton revealed that he was devouring coverage of the book, especially the reviews.
“I’ve read all the reviews and everything,” he said, down to the details. He offered a corrective counterpoint to one element that a reviewer tagged as unrealistic. “With all respect, that’s wrong,” Mr. Clinton said.
In a blue suit and blue tie, Mr. Clinton looked relaxed onstage with a wireless microphone in his hand, other than the moments he was asked about Ms. Lewinsky. The crowed booed questions on the topic.
Asked if he would apologize privately to Ms. Lewinsky today if she were in the room, Mr. Clinton replied, “If she were here now and I would speak to her, it wouldn’t be a private conversation.”
And asked if, given the #MeToo movement spurred in the last year by sexual misconduct by powerful men in politics, business and the media, whether he had reconsidered his interactions with Ms. Lewinsky as examples of sexual harassment or exploitation of power dynamics, he demurred again.
“I’ve said all I have to say,” Mr. Clinton said, adding, “I’m not going there.”
The New York City audience cheered.