Lewinsky's Mother Appears Before Grand Jury
Former intern's attorneys still trying to quash subpoena
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Feb. 10) -- Marcia Lewis, the mother of former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, appeared before the Whitewater grand jury in Washington Tuesday after attempts to quash a subpoena for her failed.
After nearly three hours of testimony, Lewis appeared for only a moment outside the court house. Her lawyer, Billy Martin, made a brief statement that indicated she may be called to testify again in the future.
"In anticipation of her appearance today, Marcia Lewis had planned to make a statement," Martin said. "She is under court order to appear as a witness and will have no further statement until she has concluded her testimony.
"Part of what she is feeling is a lot of pain for her daughter," Martin said. "She'd like not to be here at all."
Lewis and Martin made no further comment, but quickly went back inside the court house. Lewis left the building through a side entrance to escape cameras and reporters.
Also in this story:
Independent Counsel Ken Starr and his investigators suspect Lewis was aware of the former intern's alleged affair with President Bill Clinton.
Starr's staff also believes Lewis has information about the disposition of gifts the president gave Lewinsky, according to sources close to the investigation
That helps explain why Lewis was subpoenaed to appear before the federal grand jury looking into the allegations of sex and a coverup at the White House.
Martin held a closed meeting with U.S. District Court Judge Norma Holloway Johnson Tuesday, requesting Lewis' subpoena be thrown out. That motion was denied.
Sources say Martin argued that Lewis should not be forced to testify while the status of her daughter's appearance before the grand jury is up in the air.
Starr, who rarely appears in person at the federal court house, was present Tuesday for about an hour before Martin went before the judge to urge that Lewis' subpoena be quashed.
Meanwhile, Lewinsky's attorney said Tuesday his client will testify before the Whitewater grand jury if ordered to by a federal court.
"She will not go to jail like [Whitewater figure] Susan McDougal. She has no intention of falling on her sword," Bill Ginsburg said.
"On the other hand, she will exercise all of her constitutional rights, as all of us should, if and when we are ever confronted with a situation like this," Ginsburg said.
Ginsburg's comments seemed to indicate that if Lewinsky does appear, she may exercise her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.
Ginsburg spoke to journalists when he arrived at his Century City office Tuesday morning. He said Lewinsky will appear before the grand jury whenever she is ordered to appear. He said she will not defy either a court order or a subpoena.
But Ginsburg still plans to file a motion to quash the subpoena issued for Lewinsky to appear before the grand jury Thursday. He also plans to file a motion to enforce the immunity agreement he said was signed with Starr.
"We have our motions ready to go, and I've done my part," Ginsburg said Monday. "We're all set."
Ginsburg's office will file the motion Tuesday with the clerk in Washington, D.C., federal district court, according to Ginsburg. Earlier, he would not discuss the details of the motion, saying that would violate a legal rule.
Ginsburg said Tuesday he is leaving for Washington on Thursday or Friday, but said he didn't know anything about reports indicating Lewinsky may not go back to Washington.
Monday Ginsburg suggested that reporters check into a motion filed by Clinton attorney David Kendall. Ginsburg said he would appreciate it if reporters would fax it to him.
"I haven't seen it, but I'd like to be on all your leak lists," he said.
The original subpoena to Lewinsky in the Paula Jones lawsuit against the president included a request for gifts that she received from the president, sources confirmed Tuesday.
That is significant since other sources have confirmed that Lewinsky and Clinton met on Dec. 28, after she received the subpoena.
Sources confirm Starr is focusing on these gifts and what happened to them after she received the subpoena in the Jones case.
The question they are asking is: Did the president advise her to return those gifts to his secretary Betty Currie? This could lead to a possible obstruction charge, since the gifts were already subject to subpoena.
In a related development, the judge in the Paula Jones case has decided not to change the May 27 start date for the trial, CNN has learned.
Judge Susan Webber Wright announced her decision Tuesday in Little Rock, Ark.
Clinton's lawyers had asked for the trial to start sooner, but Jones' lawyers wanted to keep the date the same.
CNN's Wolf Blitzer contributed to this report