DNC's Money Woes Crimp Clintons' Holiday Style
Legal bills from campaign-finance probes force a 25 percent cut in Christmas party funds
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Dec. 4) -- The Democratic Party's campaign-finance woes have reached all the way to the White House's Christmas celebrations this year. The millions of dollars in debt hanging around the Democratic National Committee's neck has forced the party to cut the amount it has budgeted for White House Christmas parties: $300,000, down from $400,000 last year.
This means that President Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton will host only 15 DNC-financed holiday galas this year, down from 25 last time around.
But the rest of the White House's Christmas plans are chugging along. The president lit the national Christmas tree in a ceremony tonight.
And the White House's indoor decorations are on track as well. Twenty-three trees, with 224 wreaths, 486 feet of garland and 1,464 burgundy, red and gold bows among them, grace the building.
The main tree, in the Blue Room, is an 18 and-a-half foot tall Fraser fir festooned with designer-made tiny outfits for Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus. Some of them, Mrs. Clinton said, "are a little over the top."
Tommy Hilfiger's contribution is a red, white and blue ski jacket. Oscar de la Renta sent along a red plaid hunting jacket with toggle buttons and a shearling collar. Robin Piccone whipped up a red-velvet underwire bikini top and matching high-cut panty. With her eye on that last one, Mrs. Clinton said, "Mrs. Claus is going to start her diet right after Christmas."
The DNC was able to pony up the funds to print and mail 300,000 Christmas cards from the Clintons. This year's version features "White House Nocturne, South Lawn 1997" from Washington artist Kay Jackson.
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Thursday Dec. 4, 1997
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