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The Jones Case
 Legal Issues

Related Stories

Judge Orders Jones Case Record Unsealed, Barring Appeal - June 30, 1998

Jones Appeal Difficult, But Not Impossible - April 16, 1998

Jones Will Appeal, Sources Say - April 16, 1998

Jones Set To Meet With Her Attorneys - April 15, 1998


Key legal documents from the case.

Voter's Voice

We've received a ton of e-mail on Paula Jones' lawsuit, and here's some of it. Or join an online discussion on our community page.

Changing Look

Paula Jones has changed lawyers, personal advisors and even her looks. Check out the changes with a JavaScript-enabled browser.

Related Sites

Court TV Online - Jones v. Clinton

Paula Jones Legal Fund Web site

Education and Information Project Web site -- Clinton defense site by James Carville

Full Text Of Jones' Original Complaint



Clinton's Attorney 'A Street Fighter'

By Jean Meserve/CNN


WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, April 1) -- Bob Bennett, the lawyer who successfully persuaded a federal judge to throw out Paula Jones' sexual harassment suit against President Bill Clinton, has a big mouth and a bulldog style.

Depending on whether he's opposing you or on your side, Bennett can either be infuriating or the very essence of an effective attorney.

This is, after all, the man who referred to Jones' suit as "tabloid trash with a legal caption on it."

But Michael Madigan, a trial attorney, favors the "effective attorney" interpretation.

"A street fighter is somebody who is tough, who is not afraid, who's not going to back down, who is going to aggressively fight for his client, and I think Bob has all of those attributes," says Madigan.

A well-connected lawyer for many of Washington's high and mighty, Bennett eagerly sought to represent Clinton in the Paula Jones matter.

Among his strategies was to tie the case up in court until after Clinton was successfully re-elected in 1996. And while he was at it, he steadfastly maintained that Jones had "no case. She has suffered no damages. She was never harassed."

Bennett's tactics questioned

Still, some of his tactics have come under fire. Some wonder why he didn't settle and prevent the case from ballooning into a major embarrassment for the president and the presidency.

But as Bennett put it in a June 1996 interview, "Our position is this is a baseless, frivolous case we have no intention of settling."

He also infuriated some at another point by suggesting that Jones' sexual past was fair game.

And his suggestion that former White House employee Linda Tripp was lying about Kathleen Willey so angered Tripp that she taped Monica Lewinsky talking about an alleged sexual relationship she had with the president.

And that opened the door for independent counsel Ken Starr to expand his Whitewater investigation.

The biggest question of all, however, is why he allowed Clinton to be deposed under oath.

"By allowing his client to be sworn under oath about his private sex life, he made a terrible, terrible mistake," says law professor Alan Dershowitz.

'He has still got work ahead'

Bennett won the day, of course, but not everyone gives him full credit.

"This case failed due to the absence of material facts needed to convince this judge," says Jonathan Turley of the George Washington University law school.

But at least one former adversary had praise for Bennett.

"He works hard for his client," says Gil Davis, one of Jones' former attorneys. "But he has still got work ahead. There will be appeals, and maybe even more than that. But for now, I give him kudos."

Those looming legal battles will further test Bennett's skill, his strategy, his mettle ... and his mouth.

In Other News

Wednesday April 1, 1998

Judge Tosses Out Jones' Lawsuit
Jones Decision Raises Questions About Starr Probe
Congressional Reaction Split Along Party Lines
Judge: Jones' Case A Legal Strike Out
'Filegate' Depositions Sought From White House Aides
House Approves $218.3 Billion Highway Bill
Proposed West Virginia Highway Under Fire
White House Supports News Media's Request
Clinton's Attorney 'A Street Fighter'
Starr Investigation Costs Just Shy of $30 Million
White House To Announce Grants To Combat Youth Drunken Driving

Most Americans Support Judge's Decision On Jones' Lawsuit

Judge In Jones' Case Known for Sticking to the Law

Mike McCurry Reacts To Judge's Ruling

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