Whitewater and Clinton Scandal Clips
from The Progressive Review
1992-1998 Part 7
In May 1992, the Review became the first publication in America to present a comprehensive report on what has now come to be known as the Clinton scandals. Outside of conservative media no other publication has so consistently told this story
Index of Clips
Clips Feb '92 - Feb '94 Whitewater Clips Vol. 1
Clips Mar '94 - Feb '96 Whitewater Clips Vol. 2
Clips Mar - Sep '96 Whitewater Clips Vol. 3
Clips Oct 96- Mar 97 - Whitewater Clips Vol. 4
Clips Mar 97-July 97 - Whitewater Clips Vol 5
Clips Aug 97 - Feb 98 Whitewater Clips Vol 6
Clips Feb-Mar 98 - Whitewater Clips Vol 7
Clips Mar 98 - Whitewater Clips Vol 8
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Starr trek. . .
Our hunch has been that Kenneth Starr's efforts have been directed at finding a way to (a) nail Clinton but (b) not expose too many of the system's dirty secrets so life can go on pretty much as usual. Hence his bungling of the Mena and Foster investigation. Hence perhaps the appeal of the Lewinski case.
Independent investigator Hugh Sprunt takes an even more dour view. Since Sprunt is a pretty bright fellow who has been right about a lot of things, we thought we would pass it along to throw into your hypothesis pot. Sprunt wrote the following in the early stages of the Lewinsky affair:
"When the "Filegate" scandal erupted in 1996, Starr assumed jurisdiction, without objection by the Attorney General; we have heard little about the alleged misuse of the several hundred FBI files since then. Similarly, Starr was given jurisdiction to investigate claims that the First Lady played a substantial role in "Travelgate," which allegations have since vanished from the news. When Independent Counsels, such as Donald Smaltz in his investigation of former Agriculture Secretary Espy, sought to expand their jurisdiction, the administration in the person of Janet Reno resisted, though she quickly acceded to similar requests by Mr. Starr, as she did recently when the Clinton-Lewinsky relationship quickly became Starr's bailiwick.
"Starr's selection to head the Counsel's Washington office was a Democrat and close friend of high administration officials. Starr serves part-time, continuing to draw about $1.2 million annual income from his law practice at a firm with strong links to major Democratic donors. Shortly before his August 1994 departure, Starr's predecessor, Robert Fiske, announced that his investigation into the handling of documents in White House Deputy Counsel Vince Foster's office immediately after his death was nearly complete; three and a half years later, Starr has yet to issue this report. One of Starr's prosecutors resigned after Starr failed to hold Webster Hubbell to the terms of his plea bargain. Another prosecutor, appointed to head the Foster death probe, resigned, apparently deciding that his superiors and Starr's FBI agents were obstructing his investigation.
"But what about James Carville's declaration of "war" against Starr and the First Lady's subsequent claim that Starr is orchestrating a vast right-wing conspiracy that is out to get her and the President? Might these theatrics mask actual satisfaction with Starr's performance to date? To deflect inquiries, the White House can say "the Independent Counsel is investigating," while gaining a partisan political benefit by castigating the "overzealous" Mr. Starr
"I do not believe the administration and Starr have the typical "target- prosecutor" relationship, let alone the blatantly belligerent status claimed by the White House. Rather, based on the data above, I propose a relationship like that between professional wrestlers on TV - a pre-arranged bombastic public display of marginal quality designed to produce the appearance of actual week-to-week conflict. Furthermore, one might ask whether the media is playing its role by blithely "refereeing" this fake contest, a match whose outcome may be pre-arranged - that is, unless the managers of the increasingly lurid and chaotic Lewinsky affair accidentally lose control of it."
Political Prisoner #1
At the time of his death, Jim McDougal was America's most politically important prisoner, his testimony near the heart of the independent prosecutor's investigation of the Clinton scandals. Yet Jim McDougal died in the brutal conditions of solitary confinement despite being so ill he was on 12 medications. The prison in which he died was a federal facility under the control of a government headed by the man who stood the most to lose from what Jim McDougal had to say.
Prison officials knew of his condition; they further were aware that four of the medicines made it difficult for McDougal to urinate. Failure to urinate for a drug test was the supposed reason for his punishment.
This was reported in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette last November in a story by Bill Simmons. The story referred to a $27,000 check made out to Bill Clinton that had recently been found in the trunk of a car, along with other records of McDougal's Madison Guaranty bank. Shortly after, McDougal was thrown into solitary for failure to urinate. Simmons wrote:
" [McDougal] says he finds it interesting that disciplinary action came about the time of a revelation that a $27,600 check to Bill Clinton had been found among records of McDougal's savings and loan. He notes that as a federal prison inmate, he's a 'prisoner of the executive branch.' He says his statements cannot be making the White House happy. He says, 'The day the check is found, I'm sentenced to seven days in solitary confinement.'"
The ADG story is recalled in a March 16 Washington Weekly article by Carl Limbacher. In his interview, Simmons had pressed McDougal about whether he thought the White House was responsible for his prison harassment:
SIMMONS: Do you think he [Clinton] is behind the treatment you've been receiving?
SIMMONS: You do not?
MCDOUGAL: No. This is the sort of thing that an aspiring bureaucratic politician will do on their own volition. I worked with the government for a long time. You give somebody trouble, the IRS will come do your income taxes. I'm sure he [Clinton] doesn't know [about the disciplinary proceeding.]
SIMMONS: He doesn't instigate it?
MCDOUGAL: He's too smart to do that.
The ADG story was ignored by the national media, which has also failed to look seriously into the circumstances of McDougal's death. Limbacher notes someone else is keeping quiet -- the normally volatile Susan McDougal has said nothing. Concludes Limbacher, "these facts suggest that James McDougal was being harassed for cooperating with Whitewater prosecutors. There's no evidence that McDougal's death was a homicide. But the facts suggest that McDougal was at least the victim of a political vendetta designed to make prison life difficult for him, which inadvertently backfired when he died."
It helps in wending one's way through the extreme politics of the Clinton affair to keep in mind that the central issue is not whether Kenneth Starr leaves much to be desired, not whether witnesses have conflicting motives, and not whether they have less than admirable pasts. The central issue is the behavior of W.J. Clinton and those around him
It is the strategy of the White House to impugn the motives of every witness against the president. In more than a few cases questions of motivation can, in fact, be raised. But one is left with a couple of problems:
1. How does the credibility of a witness stack up against the credibility of the President and his aides?
2. Do facts impugning a witness' motives speak directly to the issue of what the President and his aides did or did not do?
Such matters are much on our mind because of the Kathleen Willey and Monica Lewinski stories, but a more complicated case involves the accounts of several Arkansas state troopers who worked closely with Clinton. They were the source of some of the early sex accounts and, later (thanks to the disputed time of a phone call to Arkansas), of questions concerning when the White House first heard of Vince Foster's death.
Salon Magazine, an on-line publication fiercely in the Clinton camp, recently claimed that several of the troopers (among others involved in the Clinton scandals) had received money from Citizens for Honest Government, a group with ties to the Rev. Jerry Falwell. Clearly, if the account is true, it makes the testimony of these troopers less credible to the average person.
But does this amount to exculpation of Clinton? Salon certainly wants to give that impression. For example, it smudges time lines so the casual reader might not be aware that the conservative support fund was created after and not before the allegations. Salon offers little information of how it obtained private records, including checking account information, although apparently several ex-employees were involved. In a court, one might wish to learn what legal means were used to obtain the information and how much money was expended to get it.
There are other problems with the Salon story. For example, during a critical period in 1993 (the "Troopergate" story appeared in the December American Spectator) there were more than a half dozen alleged instances in which Clinton or someone close to him attempted to affect the outcome of the trooper accounts, ranging from intimations of employment, to threats to, in one case, actual state police demotion. Salon does not mention this.
A fair description of the troopers' situation might be that they were heavily used and abused by both sides, sometimes willingly, sometimes unwillingly.
Knowing that, however, we are still left with the ultimate question: did the troopers' tell the truth?
One of the troopers, Robert Perry told Salon that he still believes the stories he told to Brock four years ago to be true. But he has no use for Citizens for Honest Government: "I came to believe that what they were up to was wrong."
Salon, for all its efforts, is unable to shed any light on the subject other than to make some innuendoes and cite less than convincing sources such as the CIA pooh-poohing the Mena drug story. And even David Brock, for all his sturm und drang, ultimately does not disown the troopers' stories.
At least for the present, the accounts of the troopers stand denied but not effectively challenged -- and a good case study in the complexities of the Clinton scandals and the extreme politics they have provoked.
Local color. . .
With the foregoing comments in mind, here is an excerpt from former trooper Larry Patterson's deposition in the Paula Jones case that gives some of the flavor of life in Little Rock when W.J. Clinton was governor:
Mr. Patterson: [Governor Clinton] said, "I've got someone I need to see." I said "Okay, "Where are going?" He said "To Booker Elementary School. . . [Chelsea attended Booker]
So we went to Booker Elementary School and he said, "I've a friend waiting down here, Larry and I'd like to spend some time alone with her." . . This particular lady was driving a small red compact car. it was parked beside the school underneath a streetlight. . . I was out of the car smoking, could see the action going on. Two Little Rock city policemen pulled up, said, "What are you doing here?"
I I.D.'d myself. I said, "I've a friend that's meeting a married lady down here, and they'd like some privacy. The Little Rock city policeman on the passenger side said, "If the school gets burglarized, I hope you can cover this. . . I said, "Yeah I can cover this. No problem."
Q: You said that the woman's car was under a streetlight and you could see what was going on?
Mr. Patterson: Yes, Sir.
Q: What was going on? What did you see?
Mr. Patterson: I saw Bill Clinton on the passenger side of the front seat. I was the woman get into the driver's side. I saw her head disappear into what looked like his lap. . . .
Q: Did that woman ever come to the Governor's Mansion?
Mr. Patterson: Yes, Sir.
Q: What was the incident? Can you describe that?
Mr. Patterson: A small Datsun Toyota pickup truck came in, drove right up into the parking lot where normally Hillary's car was parked or just on the other side of it, buzzed him in the house. He walked out. He had got in the car lady. I remember it being extremely cold that night. The engine was running on the vehicle, could see smoke coming out. . . In the back of the mansion, there's a security camera. It's a pan-tilt-zoom camera that would go almost completely around 360 degrees, just like a short distance right at one edge of the back of the mansion going completely 360 degrees . . .
While this act was going on in the truck, I put the camera in that area, zoomed in, and saw this lady performing oral sex on the governor
Q: Was Hillary out of town at that time?
Mr. Patterson: She was out of town.
And from former trooper Roger Perry:
Q: During the time that you were with governor's security --I guess the years would be '89 until '92 when Bill Clinton was governor -- did you travel with him?
Mr. Perry: Yes, sir.
Q: Did there come a time when you traveled with Bill Clinton when he would point out a woman to you and ask you to get information about that woman?
Mr. Perry: Yes, sir.
Q: Was this something that happened more than once?
Mr. Perry: To actually ask me to get a woman's name and number, one time. ...
Q: What was the specific instance, do you recall that?
Mr. Perry: It was in Augusta, Arkansas, at a Christmas parade. ... The governor was in a convertible. He was riding in the convertible, and it was crowded, real cold, and he got out. We were walking, and he noticed this lady in the crowd, was talking about how beautiful she was, how pretty she was. And he said, "Find out who that is."
Q: Do you know the name (Jane Doe 1)?
Mr. Perry: Yes sir, I do.
Q: Have you ever seen her come to the Governor's Mansion while you were on Governor's Security?
Mr. Perry: Personally just to see her come in to visit the governor, no, sir.
Q: Did you ever have a conversation with Danny Ferguson about (Jane Doe 1)?
Mr. Perry: Yes, sir.
Q: Would you describe that conversation?
Mr. Perry: I walked in the guard shack that morning to relieve Danny, and Danny said, "You're not going to believe what that son of a bitch has done now ... The governor had me call (Jane Doe 1) and told me what --even told her to wear: a trench coat, a hat, and to use her maiden name when she pulled up to the checkpoint." ... And Danny escorted her to the basement area of the Governor's Mansion ... And delivered her to Governor Clinton."
Q: Did Danny Ferguson say whether he had to stand guard?
Mr. Perry: He told me he stood on the stair just in case Hillary or Chelsea woke up. ...
Q: What kinds of things would you do to conceal these encounters from Hillary Clinton?
Mr. Perry: Lie to her on the phone about his whereabouts late at night.
Q: Did that ever happen?
Mr. Perry: Yes. He did it on a few occasions, and nothing ever happened. One night Hillary did wake up and called downstairs and asked me, and she said, "Roger, where's Bill?" and that's the exact words she used, "Where's Bill?" And I said, "Hillary, he had insomnia. He couldn't sleep, so he went for a drive."
She started screaming and cussing and slammed the phone down. I got on the phone and called him and I said, "Governor, Hillary's up," and he said, "Oh, my God. Oh, God. Oh, God," and he came in the back gate probably five to ten minutes later. ...
Q: Did he indicate to you why he was upset that --
Mr. Perry: No. All he was saying was, "My God. My God. I'll be right there. I'll be right there." ...
Jim McDougal told investigative reporter Chris Ruddy that in all his conversations with the special prosecutors he was never asked about Vince Foster.
"If he was the head of a large company he'd be fired. If he were in his own cabinet he'd be indicted. And if he were a sergeant-major in the military, he'd be court-martialed. . . This is the Oval Office of the White House, not an upstairs of a fraternity house." -- Lamar Alexander
The third man
[Our original report contained several errors. In particular this updated version contains corrected or amplified information concerning the Brown air crash from independent investigator Hugh Sprunt]
There are three men who could clear up the Clinton scandals in a jiffy. Unfortunately, all three are dead.
The first two -- Vince Foster and Jim McDougal -- have received a great deal of attention. The third, however, remains largely ignored despite his critical role in the sleazy, corrupt and criminal activities that have been a hallmark of the Clinton organization.
Ron Brown rose swiftly in Washington power circles during a time when even hustlers and fixers felt the need for a few affirmative action babies. With his charm and sly smarts Brown fit the bill admirably. But Brown was a deceptive symbol of black power. The only power he really believed in was Brown power -- Ron Brown power.
Lacking any investment experience, he nonetheless formed an investment firm that soon cut a deal with Marion Barry to handle the city's pension funds. He joined the hyper-connected law firm of Tommy Boggs. 18 partners in the firm would end up with high posts in the Clinton administration. The firm represented the likes of MCI, Shell, Mars, the Newspaper Association of America, Sony, the American Bankers Association, Arco, Hewlett-Packard, the Zairean and Guatemalan governments, the sheik of Abu Dhabi, as well as Jordan, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. The firm over the past fifteen years has raised money for more congressmembers than any other lobbyists. To complete the cozy arrangements, Boggs is the brother of Cokie Roberts of ABC and NPR who reports regularly on Congress and the Clinton administration.
Brown represented a number of the firm's clients and also served as a lobbyist for Baby Doc Duvalier on a $12,500 a month retainer. He managed Baby Doc's $50 million investment fund.
Although Brown was frequently mentioned as a possible mayor of Washington, his big political leap came when he was named chair of the Democratic National Committee in time to preside over the corporatist coronation of W.J. Clinton at the party's convention. Brown reputedly got his job in return for Jesse Jackson's agreement to bag the talk about justice and freedom and become a loyal Clintonista.
Named Commerce Secretary, Brown treated his post as another place to wheel and deal. He was irrepressible, on one occasion okaying the sale of new American engines for China to put in its cruise missiles. The engines had been built as military equipment but Brown reclassified them as civilian.
A 1994 memo found in Commerce Department files indicates that Brown was no less cynical in dealing with the Chinese on civil liberties: "[Brown] deftly navigated the human-rights issue [during a meeting with Chinese dictator Li Peng] by obtaining an agreement on further talks and then moved directly into the economic issues at hand: helping Chrysler, Sprint and others with their joint ventures."
Neither was he above doing a little business on the side. The Saudis wanted some American planes; Brown told them: you want the planes you also want a phone contract with ATT. Cost of the planes and hardware: $6 billion. Cost of the phone contract: $4 billion. Part of the deal, it turned out was an ATT side agreement with a firm called First International. The owner: Ron Brown.
Things seemed to go swimmingly for Brown through 1995. In early 1996, however, the Washington Post reported that he had hired Reid Weingarten, a $750 an hour criminal attorney. Brown apparently knew what was coming down. In late March, a score of witnesses were subpoenaed for a grand jury probe of Brown. Among the issues: an Oklahoma gas company's alleged funneling of over a half million to Brown in order to get him to fix a lawsuit pending against the firm.
Janet Reno named Daniel Pearson to head the Brown probe. She said he could investigate anything. Brown reportedly tried to get Clinton to force Reno off his back, but evidence of Brown's crookedness had reached Capitol Hill and the Attorney General apparently felt there was no turning back.
It is alleged by some close to Brown that the Commerce Secretary told the president that if he was going down, he was not going down alone. If true, the declaration must have startled Clinton who was launching his reelection bid.
In any case, four days after the grand jury subpoenas had been issued, Ron Brown was dead -- killed when the plane in which he was flying (along with nearly three dozen other Americans) crashed into a mountain in Croatia.
The incident could be put down to pure coincidence were it not for a bothersome series of anomalies that no one in official position and only a tiny few in the media even wish to address. They exist, however, whether investigated and answered or not. Once again, a cover up has raised more suspicions than the incident that provoked it.
[Note: we reported initially that the air traffic tape recording had disappeared. Sprunt says that while no tape was ever made available, a printed transcript of the tape was released as part of the USAF report. Sprunt writes: "The transcript shows that the pilots reported no material anomalies either with their approach or with the aircraft."
None of these developments received any serious attention in the mainstream media, despite being matters that would pique the interest of any competent investigator. Those who raised questions were instead met with incredulity, ridicule or a demand that they produce a foolproof alternative explanation for the crash.
The latter demand is, of course, popular in Washington these days but is precisely the wrong way to conduct an investigation. Conclusions come only after all questions have been answered, all evidence examined. In fact, while foul play rightfully seems incomprehensible to a halfway moral mind, technically it wasn't that much of a problem e.g. you simply send a false beacon signal to the plane.
Many months after the crash, investigative reporter Christopher Ruddy produced startling news. The pathology team that had examined Brown had found an inexplicable precisely round hole in his head, at least suggestive of a bullet wound. Army Lt. Col. David Hause was working two tables away from the one at Dover Air Force Base where Brown was being examined when a "commotion" erupted and someone said, "Gee, this looks like a gunshot wound." Hause remembers says, "Sure enough, it looks like a gunshot wound to me, too."
Standard procedures, especially for a cabinet officer, would have been a full autopsy. Dr. Cyril Wecht, who has done more than 13,000 autopsies, would later tell Ruddy there was "more than enough" evidence to suggest possible homicide in the Ron Brown death and that an autopsy should have been performed: "It is not even arguable in the field of medical legal investigations whether an autopsy should have been conducted on Brown."
But none was performed. Further, after one of the examiners talked Ruddy about the incident, the military went into panic mode including searching the officer's quarters and restricting his movements. The chief medical examiner of the armed forces hand-delivered a memo signed by himself not only banning press contact without prior approval but requiring all staff members to stay in their offices throughout the working day. Even ranking military officers had to seek approval before leaving the building for lunch. One staff member described the rules as like "house arrest."
The media has scoffed at the reports the bullet-like hole, but the pathologist who broke the news wasn't smiling. The rating of the Lt. Col. Steve Cogswell of the armed forces pathology center dropped from being the "number one forensic pathology consultant in the Department of Defense" to that of a troublemaker who was "disruptive" and "immature." In addition, all four officers who criticized their supervisors for not insisting on an autopsy of Brown were prohibited from attending the annual national professional conference for pathologists in San Francisco. Said Navy Chief Petty Officer Kathleen Janoski, head of the center's photography unit, "In our opinion there has been a cover-up of the facts. I have 22 years in the Navy and I've never been treated like this. My career is down the toilet."
Once again, the story seems preposterous but the reaction to it was even more so, thus leading one back to a question that might have been put to rest within hours given a proper autopsy: what was that round hole doing in Ron Brown's head?
Again, ignoring probability and looking only at technical considerations, it was certainly possible for Brown to have been shot before or after the crash. The post-crash period seems the most intriguing. According to official reports, there was only one survivor of the crash, a stewardess.
[Contrary to our report, Sprunt writes, the stewardess was not evacuated by helicopter. Instead, "The plan was to airlift her off the hill using a US Special Forces MH-53 helicopter. By the time they were ready to move her, officially the weather was too bad to use the US helicopters (there were two MH-53s there at the time), so she was stretchered down the hill to a road above the village of Velji Do and put into an ambulance for the trip to the hospital. Officially, she was pronounced dead while she was in the ambulance. Four men were positioned on each side of the stretcher for the walk down the hill and a man led them with a flashlight -- per the USAF report. One witness report did have her walking around at the crash site, but most accounts have her unconscious or semi-conscious for almost all her time on the hill."]
The Croatians who first arrived on the scene got there more than four hours after the crash. Somehow, US officials remained uncertain as to the crash location of crash and American search and rescue teams don't arrive for over eleven hours. The time gaps are pregnant with possibility.
So is the testimony before a military inquiry of a 14-year-veteran para-rescue expert, Staff Sergeant Robert F. Ridout II. This testimony, from the Air Force's report, largely speaks for itself.
Asked about the dead stewardess, Ridout rambles at some length, speculating on the problems that Croatian troops faced, ending with
Ridout: But as far as the girl is concerned, maybe you could -- did she make it to --
Q: We can talk about that off line
Ridout: Will you please talk to me later?
Q: Yes. I can fill you in on some of this.
Ridout: That's driving me crazy, because that tells me, okay, if there was an autopsy, what was her causes, approximate time of death, injuries sustained during accident, possible injuries sustained coming down the hill, any of that stuff. Because it's like that when I start plugging in my delay on the ground and the girl. There are too many unknowns, the weather, Croatians, all the time, whether or not getting to her, even if we got to her, would we be able to sustain her life further, and for how long. . .
Q: Was your concern because of the investigation that you knew might be going on that just some things that were being moved around, was that your primary concern?
Ridout: I was concerned that with that many people, and being not a people -- like curiosity seekers, souvenir hunters, that type of thing -- that because were there at a later period of time, that everything might not be there as it laid after the crash. I know during our search we came upon a body with a holster and there as no weapon in it, and it did not look like the holster -- that was, a pistol -- it did not look like the pistol had broken out of its sheath. That doesn't say it just didn't come loose, but it was not to be found. So that was my big --light bulb came on, you know. . . .
I'm not going to go into the bodies, and how some of the family members were laid, but I had a concern that some things might have been disturbed. . . .Seeing some of the tags -- or I mean some of the calling cards, it was like, we got some people this bird. We've got some high people on this bird. So with that, that bothered me more because now of course it hits home, we have Americans and I don't want anything bothered. So I'm hoping that the film, that it got to wherever it -- someone from the investigation tem. I'm sure, has developed it and hopefully those pictures have gone to those families and there was nothing incriminating on them.
Ridout was no rightwing conspiracy theorist, just a 14-year expert in search and rescue doing his job, asking the sort of questions that, say, reporters used to ask. Several things stand out: the fact that he was cut off when he asked about the fate of the stewardess, his concern over the missing gun and the matter of the film, which never did show up.
None of this proves that Ron Brown was murdered, only that -- contrary to the utopia theorists of the media -- there are many unanswered questions and unexamined matters. To this day, however, the media is uninterested in the role and fate of Ron Brown.
Even the news that Brown's former business partner Nolanda B.Hill had alleged in court that Hillary Clinton and other White House aides used Brown's trade missions as campaign-fund raisers was down-played.
Hill has been indicted, along with several others, in a case that grew out of the Ron Brown investigation. Among the accusations is that she conspired to divert more than a half million dollars to Brown from the Corridor Broadcasting Corporation from $21 million in loans from an S&L that were never paid back. Her comments were made during a separate public interest lawsuit by Judicial Watch. She said that there was a cover-up of documents that would support her claim and that the charge for taking a trip with Brown was a $50,000 contribution to the DNC: "I further learned through discussions with Ron that the White House, through Leon Panetta and John Podesta, had instructed him to delay the case by withholding the production of documents prior to the 1996 elections, and to devise a way not to comply with the court's orders,''. The White House has called the claims "false in every respect."
After Hill told the court that she was afraid the Clinton administration -- Justice in particular -- would retaliate if she testified in the case, the judge promised her protection. In another remarkable development, the judge asked Hill's criminal attorney to help with her testimony after being told by Judicial Watch that she was being represented by a lawyer who was also attorney to Clinton shamus Terry Lenzner.
According to Hill, Brown initially objected to the frequent-high-flyer scam. Among other things, he thought he was worth more than $50,000 a trip." Mrs. Clinton allegedly pressured him to go along. "I'm doing my chores for Hillary Rodham Clinton," Brown supposedly told Hill.
Hill is, as they say in Washington, controversial. She has not been reluctant to express her views on a variety of matters. She once told Prime Time Live that Brown used drugs while Commerce Secretary and considered taking a big payoff from Vietnam to get trade restrictions lifted but dropped the idea when he got a tip that FBI was on the case. She said of another prominent Clintonista that his "rainbow coalition starts and stops with Vernon Jordan.'' And she told Chris Ruddy that that she did not believe the Brown plane crash was an accident. On the other hand, she is on trial for allegedly being a cheat and a fraud.
Like so much else surrounding the Clinton organization, there is much that is murky, contradictory, and misleading. One thing is certain, though: the story of Ron Brown is at least as important as that of Monica Lewinsky and the media might regain a bit of self-respect by treating it that way.
DC Diary: Everything I Know About Bill Clinton
I Learned From Marion Barry
Almost from the start I recognized something familiar about Bill Clinton. The soft southern voice so unwavering in its glib assurance, the excuse for everything, the absence of inquiry, the cynical charm, a cause well used a quarter century ago and then forgotten, the adulterated intelligence, the inconsistency, the willingness to use anything or anyone, the undisciplined egocentrism, the populist rhetoric playing bumper tag with corporatist policies, the drugs, the women, and the whiff of the underworld. It was not new; I had, after all, known Marion Barry for over 25 years.
There were, to be sure, differences. Clinton's youthful cause had been Vietnam, Barry's civil rights. Barry retreated into an ethnic cocoon; Clinton's ambitions became national. Clinton was white and Barry was black. There was another difference. When Barry was caught with women or drugs, the Washington Post played the story with glee; when Gennifer Flowers and stories of Clinton drug use came up, the Post spiked or subordinated them. Two and half weeks after the Monica Lewinsky story broke, including logs showing three dozen visits to the White House, the Post called the relationship "ambivalent." None of Barry's activities had been reported as "ambivalent." In the end a whole city would have to pay for Barry's faults. Not even Clinton has had to pay for his.
When Barry ran for reelection I took the position that I was all in favor of redemption; I just didn't see why you had to do it the mayor's office. During the campaign I appeared on a TV show with Barry. I pointed out to him that he had never apologized to the people of the city for the pain he had caused them. Barry went into his redemption speech; he ended by saying that he hoped some day "Sam would consider me redeemed, too."
That was the end of the show and we walked out together and sat down in the lounge next to the studio. "Marion," I said, "I wasn't talking about your redemption. There are a lot of people in this town who were embarrassed and hurt by what you did and I don't see any sign that you even recognize it." Barry didn't seem to understand what I was talking about and so I said, "Look, isn't one of the twelve steps that you're meant to make amends to those you have harmed along the way?"
For a moment, he connected: "You mean I should tell them that I'm sorry.?"
"It might help."
Barry nodded and excused himself, but he hadn't really heard. As I looked into his well-trained eyes I realized I had sought something beyond his vision. For him there were no others.
I thought of that evening the other day when Bill Clinton was asked what message he might send to Monica Lewinsky. He made a joke of the question and when another reporter asked if he might resign, he said, "Never." I looked into Clinton's well-trained eyes and knew the reporters had asked something beyond his vision. For him there were no others -- Sam Smith
Exclusive: Inside The Vast Rightwing Conspiracy
I figured that if I was going to be part of the vast right wing conspiracy, I better find out something about it. So in the best fashion of post-modern journalism, I decided to take a poll. I didn't really know how to take a poll but I estimated that if interviewing 450 people across the nation could tell one how popular the president is, then interviewing six people would take care of a conspiracy of up to 3,333,333 people. That seemed pretty vast to me.
The sample of Clinton tormentors I came up with consisted of Roger Morris (author of Partners in Power), Sally Denton (longtime co-conspirator and now wife of Morris), journalist Christopher Ruddy, independent investigator Hugh Sprunt, columnist Phillip Weiss, and, just to keep costs down, myself. Whitewater journalist Ambrose Evans-Pritchard was supposed to be in the sample but he is such a sly conspirator I couldn't even find him.
The first thing I discovered about these folks was that their conspiracy might be more of the vast offspring, rather than vast right-wing, variety. In fact, with the exception of Morris, all came from families ranging from four (Sprunt and Denton) to six (Weiss and Smith) to fourteen (Ruddy). And while the Clintons are each oldest children of small families, only Morris and Sprunt lead their sibling pack.
Is there an inner meaning to this? Maybe. When Weiss asked if I was bothered being mixed up with right-wingers, I told him have always lived around people who didn't agree with me. And to put the matter of birth order as scientifically and objectively as possible, if you are a later born in a large family you learn early not to take any shit from those who got there first. One can imagine the vital skills the 12th born little Ruddy gained in endless battles for the window seat.
I next looked for ideological traces only to be terribly disappointed. For example, at almost the same time Sprunt was absorbing Ayn Rand, I was being influenced by the writings of Martin Luther King Jr. Alleged rightwing journalist Ruddy went to the London School of Economics and taught American history to Bronx students from the Caribbean and later to largely black classes at Adlai Stevenson High School. At 26 he won an landslide election to become chair of the teacher's union local, from which post he led a successful battle to get rid of an incompetent principal.
Sally Denton's father ran for Congress twice as a "very progressive, liberal Democrat" favoring civil rights, welfare, Medicare, and gun control. One of her grandmothers was an early 20th century feminist. Weiss's parents were anti-Vietnam War. Mine were rabid New Dealers who started an organic beef farm even before Silent Spring. While it is true that Morris once worked for the Nixon White House, he resigned over the invasion of Cambodia in May 1970. Besides, he also worked for Dean Acheson, Lyndon Johnson and Walter Mondale which, in liberal circles, is pretty close to a hat trick.
More important, though, may be the fact that among the journalists in my sample, none has worked for what might be called the prissy press -- you know: the people who look and talk like morticians and are always prattling about excellence and editorial filtering and that sort of thing. Two (Ruddy and Weiss) have worked for lusty tabloids, Denton worked for Jack Anderson, in television, and for western papers. And I started out in radio and have been an alternative journalist most of my life.
But the most significant thing I found out about my sample was how many of us grew up in environments that encouraged both independent thinking and moral concern. Chris Ruddy's father, for example, was an police lieutenant who he describes as "a great believer in people -- a humanitarian -- which is not typical for the cynicism one finds among cops."
"My parents were patriotic. They believed in the country, in values. Of course we [didn't] have much money and it was sort of stressed that money was not as important as doing the right thing. " His father was pro-union and not reactionary at all.
Sally Denton's list of familial free-thinkers starts with an ancestor who fled Utah in the 1850s after being "fleeced by the church" and the men who ran it. Appalled by polygamy she left the state with a Mormon assassination squad hot on her trail.
Growing up in Las Vegas, Denton was an early rebel influenced by watching her father being defeated by corruption time and again "and the routine and systematic silencing of women." She found her outlet in journalism, producing among other things, The Blue Grass Conspiracy, a riveting account of how drugs took over Kentucky.
Roger Morris was strongly influenced by his grandmother in the Kansas City of the Pendergast machine: "Her view of the inner darkness of real American politics left me an indelible sense of the shallowness and disgrace of most or our public discourse, the fundamental immorality of both old parties, and an abiding sense of reformist outrage."
Hugh Sprunt describes himself as "not a complete Randite . . .and I gather from official sources that is the only kind you can be." He went to church regularly through high school. It counted as a class. All through high school, I went to Quaker meeting each week and it, too, counted as a class.
Sprunt ended up a "respectable" tax CPA and attorney with a JD and MBA from Stanford, but along the way he drove a combine, worked as an illegal alien outside the US, taught diving, cooked 1200 meals at week at MIT while a student there, and -- trained by crop dusters -- got his pilot's license at 16.
Philip Weiss came to the Whitewater story as an articulate agnostic and has continued his search as an honest pilgrim, which is to say that as a confederate of any sort he is not to be trusted. For my part, one grandfather wouldn't have Sunday papers delivered to his house, the other wrote letters to his son using "thee" and "thou." My mother, upon hearing me mildly slight Eleanor Roosevelt, demanded in pique, "Don't you hold anything sacred?"
At the same time, our house always seemed filled with people doing something different or for the first time such a cousin testing his weird invention, an FM car radio, or my father filing a public interest law suit before there were such things or asking dowser Henry Gross to find him some water. In my own case, loyal readers have more than enough evidence of terminal indifference towards the conventional.
In short, it all adds up to a pretty lousy conspiracy. It seems more like an oxymoronic confederacy of the hopelessly independent. Just some people who somehow learned to respect certain values and certain things, one of which is that it is still possible to think for yourself. Whatever it is, it's nice to be around. -- Sam Smith
"Advisers winced when Clinton wandered from his prepared text during Tuesday's speech on Iraq, apparently alluding to the other issue on his mind. He ridiculed Iraqi president Saddam Hussein's claim that he needed to shield huge 'presidential sites' from international weapons inspectors. After all, he said, 'We're not talking about a few rooms here with delicate personal matters involved.'" -- Susan Page and Bill Nichols, USA Today
Republican Senator Bob Smith publicly made the big connection in a talk in Iowa: "If he can't tell me the truth about [the Lewinsky affair], is he telling the truth about Iraq?" And from the other side of the aisle, Democratic Rep. Cynthia Mckinney asks, "How many people are we going to kill this time just because we don't want to set a precedent for having a country dictate . . . who can do an inspection."
Clinton writes own law in health care scandal
It's going to take more than a federal judge to get Clinton to admit any wrong-doing. Even though the White House was slapped with a quarter-million dollar plus fine for lying to the court in the health-care scandal, Clinton remained unrepentant. Said Clinton, "I am quite confident that [White House aide Ira Magaziner] acted appropriately. Any suggestions to the contrary is unfair and unsupported by the facts . . . Mr. Magaziner is, and will remain, a valued member of my Administration." Neither did Magaziner show any remorse; he even accused the federal judge who levied the fine of "popping off." Meanwhile, the media has largely treated the health-care scandal as a minor procedural flap rather than what it was -- a corrupt sweetheart deal between health-care corporations and the Clinton administration.
Ron Brown Head Wound No Joke To Whistleblowers
The media has scoffed at reports of an unexplained round bullet-like hole in Ron Brown's head, but the pathologist who broke the news isn't smiling. The rating of the Lt. Col. Steve Cogswell of the armed forces pathology center has dropped from being the "number one forensic pathology consultant in the Department of Defense" to that of a troublemaker who is "disruptive" and "immature." In addition, all four officers who criticized their supervisors for not insisting on an autopsy of Brown were prohibited from attending the annual national professional conference for pathologists in San Francisco earlier this month. Says Navy Chief Petty Officer Kathleen Janoski, head of the center's photography unit, "In our opinion there has been a cover-up of the facts. I have 22 years in the Navy and I've never been treated like this. My career is down the toilet."
A Subtext For The Times
Although it hard to gather from the conventional media, the Clinton scandals reflect a broader decadent culture that has permeated not only Washington politics but other aspects of American life. Key elements of this culture are multinational corporate corruption; the political and economic influence of the illegal drug trade; disinterest in democracy and constitutional protections among politicians, the media and other elites; and a growing sense of impunity by those in power.
This then is the context of the Clinton scandals: they are not aberrations of establishment culture but symptomatic of it. Whereas Nixon's corruption represented a classic conspiracy -- a tightly controlled abuse of power, the corruption of Clinton's Washington represents a whole ecology of abusive power. What is happening now is bipartisan, multinational, multi-professional and pandemic. Thus the consequences are far more serious than Watergate and their cure far more elusive.
-- Corporate corruption: The corporate corruption of politics is at levels unseen since the 1920s or the late 19th century. Unlike these earlier periods, however, much of this corruption is no longer domestic. As former Senate investigator Jack Blum explains, "no really major crime is domestically limited anymore." Between the politicians who do not wish to pursue it and the primitive state of international law enforcement cooperation, much of this crime goes unpunished. For example, the Justice Department took a fall on the American aspects of the massive BCCI scandal. For another example, some of the illegal money flow in Arkansas may have ended up in Grand Cayman, the sixth largest holder of bank assets in the world. As of a few years ago, the island had a population of 18,000, 570 banks, one bank regulator, and a bank secrecy law.
-- The drug trade: According to a UN projection, the world's illegal drug trade is roughly equivalent to the global automobile industry. Could such an industry exist in the United States without direct and significant contact with, and influence over, politicians? Of course not. Among the places the drug trade has flourished has been Arkansas, unimpeded by curiously incurious politicians like Governor Bill Clinton who repeatedly ducked demands that he investigate what was going on at Mena and elsewhere. When special prosecutor Donald Smaltz attempted to expand his Agricultural Department probe to areas that might have revealed details of Arkansas' drug trade and some of the major people involved, Attorney General Reno turned him down.
-- The Dixie Mafia: One of the reasons Bill Clinton talked so much about Hope, Arkansas, was so that people wouldn't notice how much of his youth was actually spend in the mob resort town of Hot Springs. But Arkansas didn't really have to import mobsters; it had enough of its own, part of what law enforcement officers call the Dixie Mafia. As investigative reporter Ambrose Evans-Pritchard writes in The Secret Life of Bill Clinton: "Less famous than the Cosa Nostra, the Dixie Mafia was, and still is, far more dangerous." During a ten year period from 1968 to 1978 when the Italian Americans mobs were in the news for killing thirty people, the Dixie Mafia was offing 156.
Rex Armistead, who headed the organized crime strike force in New Orleans in the 1970s, told Evans-Pritchard: " The big difference [with the northern Mafia] was the lack of ceremony. It was just 'I'm going to get rid of Ambrose today;' I don't need permission; and I go out and do it. As simple as that. And that's the end of Ambrose. It hasn't much changed."
Bill Clinton has friends in the Dixie Mafia, he and his wife were close business partners of a crook named Jim McDougal, about a dozen Friends of Bill have been convicted or pleaded guilty of criminal offenses, others show up in DEA files as suspected drug traffickers. If Clinton were mayor of a northern city he would be known as a mob-connected politician.
-- The breakdown of law and democracy: Because of the growing tendency of America's leadership to disregard democracy and its protections, we have arrived at today's political crisis absent what used to be known as the "rule of law." Both Kenneth Starr and Bill Clinton are now making their own rules, often replacing legal procedures with most cynical mechanisms of propaganda or tactics normal citizens consider underhanded. They are not alone. The FBI's reputation for probity has been in free fall over the past few years. The CIA is serving as security pimp for US mega-corporations with ever-lessening concern over domestic involvement. The NSA is tapping phones at an extraordinary rate on the pretext that violating constitutional rights is okay as long as you do it from a foreign monitoring station. All these agencies have something at stake in the Clinton scandals and are operating according to internal rules that are often contemptuous of democratic safeguards. The result is not justice, but a form of legal anarchy.
-- The other side of town: There is a side of Washington that rarely breaks water. You are reminded of it when a private investigator tells you that the going rate for breaking into someone's checking account is around $300 a line of data. You are reminded of it when you hear of a bunch of congress members deciding not to run again and you remember how J. Edgar Hoover used to use his files to handle political problems on the Hill. You are reminded of it when you recall the 900 FBI files the Clinton White House improperly obtained and the dirt being spread around town about people's private lives and the suicides that don't seem quite right and Monica Lewinsky saying she doesn't want to end up like the White House intern murdered at Starbucks and then you are reminded that all that is part of the ecology of Washington, too.
This all should not be read as a roman a clef from which the reader deduces conclusions concerning specific events, but rather as a guide to the context in which these events have occurred and will occur in the future. This context is baroque, dangerous and heavily corrupt. It will not disappear because the media ignores it. We face a unique and particularly risky moment in American history and it does no one any favor to pretend otherwise.
When lawyers rule. . .
Nothing so well demonstrates the dangers involved in letting lawyers dictate political and social norms than the events of the past few weeks. Whichever side of the Clinton-Starr flap you're on, it's almost impossible to discuss the matter without being affected by the adolescent perspectives of the Washington bar. It is not pure happenstance, for example, that the best this city could come up with as a solution to the Iraqi situation was to bomb Baghdad to smithereens. Because of employment bias in high government positions, even the Pentagon and the National Security Council mirror a local legal culture which prides itself on how much damage it can inflict on the other side. Hence we also find the White House launching a scorched earth policy against the prosecutor and the latter responding by laying legal land mines wherever he can. Similarly, a one-way blow job is just a Washington lawyer's view of what sex should be about: a power trip by other means. In the end it's all not really ideological; just a matter of retarded development.
Rules of engagement . . .
If you're going to play the current game, here are some rules that will make you hipper than the average journalist or cable face:
Surprising as it may seem, you do not need a smoking gun nor do you have to await the final outcome of an investigation to come to a conclusion about a sitting politician or other public figure. If said politician acts like a scumbag, walks like a scumbag and talks like a scumbag, it is perfectly all right to draw some inferences from these phenomena. It's called being a citizen, something we once were before the lawyers and media took over.
Most of the troublesome things you have seen Kenneth Starr do he did not invent. You are getting a rare insight into the crudity of American prosecutorial style. If you don't like what you see, check out your local DC or US Attorney, for you'll probably have to reform them as well as Starr. Meanwhile, the best reform nationally would be an independently elected attorney general.
The overwhelming majority of the media have failed to give you the straight scoop on Clinton for nearly six years. Just because certain facts are no longer avoidable doesn't mean those commenting on them are any smarter than they have been all along.
Just because the media is hot on a trail doesn't mean that's where the story is. For one thing, the media has a hard time following more than one angle at a time. Thus, the flipping of Jim Guy Tucker may be infinitely more important than what Monica Lewinsky did or did not do.
There is no such thing in the law as a flack-scribe privilege, despite what you have been hearing in the wake of Sidney Blumenthal's subpoena.
There is no such thing as a protected mother-daughter privilege either. In fact, one of the more hypocritical critics of Starr on this score is ex-prosecutor Lawrence Walsh who not only subpoenaed Oliver North's wife, but his pastor and lawyer as well.
Do not send to ask what the poll tells. Short-term poll changes following a news event illustrate the effectiveness of propaganda and not much else. For example, after Reagan announced with much fanfare a war on drugs, the percentage of those considering drugs the country's most important issue shot up. Drug usage hadn't changed, only what was being said about it. Such spikes are part of the infinite feedback loop involving politician, media and the least interested or informed portion of the electorate. For example, if you are committed for or against Clinton, what he says in the State of the Union is not going to make a lot of difference to you. If you rarely follow politics, however, and watch the address (and subsequent media interpretations) you may be significantly affected.
Any shift in poll results is half as big as the media usually suggests. Let's say, for example, that a candidate (according to the evening news) wins by a "landslide" of 60%. Sounds huge until one realizes that a shift of only 10% of the voters would have turn the race into a dead heat. What is often described as the "mood of the country" really only reflects the opinions of a phlegmatic and oscillating minority.
Just for the record:
CRIMINAL CODE, TITLE 18. CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE, PART I. CRIMESCHAPTER 73, SECTION 1503
Whoever corruptly, or by threats or force, or by any threatening letter or communication, endeavors to influence, intimidate, or impede any grand or petit juror, or officer in or of any court of the United States, or officer who may be serving at any examination or other proceeding before any United States magistrate judge or other committing magistrate, in the discharge of his duty... or corruptly or by threats or force, or by any threatening letter or communication, influences, obstructs, or impedes, or endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede, the due administration of justice, shall be punished as provided in subsection (b).The punishment for an offense under this section is-- imprisonment for not more than 10 years, a fine under this title, or both.
Two Sids. . . .
Sidney Blumenthal this week: "Ken Starr regards freedom of speech and freedom of the press as worthy of investigation as a criminal conspiracy." Added his lawyer: "We view it as an assault on the First Amendment, I think this is obviously intended to . . intimidate the press."
Sidney Blumenthal's lawyer to Matt Drudge six months ago: "Before proceeding against you, Mr. And Mrs. Blumenthal want to give you an opportunity. . . Disclose to them the following: the names of the 'top GOP operatives' . . . the name of the 'influential Republican who demanded anonymity . . . and the name of the 'White House source' whom you purposed to quote. . . If you have not provided this information to my office by 5:00 pm EDT tomorrow, the Blumenthals will take the appropriate action against you."
Zogby poll finds only 32% of Americans believe Vince Foster committed suicide. Forty-six percent are unsure.
While most liberals and leftists retain their abused spouse relationship with Clinton, a few are cutting loose e.g. Jack Newfield of the New York Post who blasts the White House use of "a doomsday blackmail strategy" on members of the Congress and journalists.
Mistaken identity. . . .
We seem to have given some people the idea that this is where you sign up for membership in the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy. For example a reader named Mike writes:
"Date: Wed, 18 Feb 1998 08:57:19 EST
"Subject: any openings?
"Sorry it took me so long.
"I was looking for someone to provide me with a form so that I could join the RWC, but it seems that all I can find are you oxymoronic independents who can't seem to do more than object to the sheriff when someone starts rustling. . . .
"What can you do with a guy that actually believed that we wanted drugs to stop coming into the country, only to be introduced to the factual concept that this was not quite so via the most surprising of ways? A pair of bullets which came my way from my fellow agents was not exactly the sort of risk I thought that I was supposed to be exposed to at the time, so I was caught looking the other way. . . . "
Mac Horton of Alabama tries to sneak in on the grounds that he is "a Catholic who voted for Reagan because of social issues" and who plans for the foreseeable future to vote against Democrats, if he votes at all, because "I've come to regard the accretion of power in the central government as an irresistible temptation for gangsters." But Horton then goes on to admit that his "sociopolitical thinking owes most to the English Distributists (Chesterton and Belloc), Wendell Berry, and the Southern Agrarians. From roughly '91 through '96 a friend of mine, my wife, and I published a rather countercultural Catholic quarterly called "Caelum et Terra" ("Heaven and Earth"). We annoyed everybody and never had more than 1200 or so subscribers."
If we were the membership committee of the VRWC we wouldn't know what to do with such questionable applications, especially the part about Chesterton. How, after all, would Mrs. Clinton categorize someone who viewed power this way:
"Even a tyrant must never figure as a tyrant. He may break down everybody's fences and steal everybody's land, but he must do it by Act of Parliament and not with a great two-handed sword. And if he meets the people he's dispossessed, he must be very polite to them and enquire after their rheumatism. That's what kept the British Constitution going -- enquiring after the rheumatism."
Fortunately we are not the membership committee of the VRWC. We shall, however, securely keep all present and future correspondence on the matter until contacted by proper authority, either by mail or subpoena. Meanwhile, we would really appreciate it if someone could tell us where to find this guy Scaife so we can ask him why he hasn't given us any money.
Well sourced . . .
A friend of a friend of our friend Hank Chapot -- does that count as three sources? -- went to high school with Linda Tripp. Reviewing the class yearbook, she found this listed under Tripp's 'pet peeves:' "Superficial friendships."
One of the more interesting comments by Whitewater persona came the other day from the rapidly self-extricating George Stephanopoulos when he told ABC "This Week" that the White House had a "different, long-term strategy, which I think would be far more explosive. White House allies are already starting to whisper about what I'll call the Ellen Romisch strategy . . . She was a girlfriend of John F. Kennedy, who also happened to be an East German spy. And Robert Kennedy was charged with getting her out of the country and also getting J. Edgar Hoover to go up to the Congress and say, 'Don't you investigate this, because if you do, we're going to open up everybody's closets."
Asked Sam Donaldson, "Are you suggesting for a moment that what they're beginning to say is that if you investigate this too much, we'll put all your dirty linen right on the table? Every member of the Senate? Every member of the press corps?"
"Absolutely," said Stephanopoulos. "The president said he would never resign, and I think some around him are willing to take everybody down with him."
If the White House wants to pursue such a strategy it doesn't have to look far. It already has illegally the fruits of perusing 900 personal files from the FBI on key GOP officials. The misappropriation of the files merited an impeach inquiry in itself but the media quickly rolled over on the story and has shown little interest since.
Cutting to the chase. . . .
"[Ron Brown] deftly navigated the human-rights issue [during a meeting with Chinese dictator Li Peng] by obtaining an agreement on further talks and then moved directly into the economic issues at hand: helping Chrysler, Sprint and others with their joint ventures." -- From a 1994 memo found in Commerce Department files
All in the family. . . .
According to a story in this month's Vanity Fair, Tommy Boggs is one of 18 partners in Boggs' law firm who have held important posts in the Clinton administration. Others include Lannie Davis and Ron Brown. Boggs' firm has represented the likes of MCI, Shell, Mars candy, the Newspaper Association of America, Sony the American Bankers Association, Arco, Hewlett-Packard, Baby Doc Duvalier, the Zairean and Guatemalan governments, the sheikh of Abu Dhabi, as well as Jordan, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. The firm over the past fifteen years has raised money for more congressmembers than any other lobbyists. Boggs is the brother of Cokie Roberts of ABC and NPR who reports regularly on Congress and the Clinton administration.
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