Clinton: 'Mixed Feelings' On Jones Case Dismissal
NEW YORK (AllPolitics, April 5) -- President Bill Clinton
says he personally has mixed feelings about this week's
dismissal of the lawsuit Paula Jones filed against him. But
as president, he added, he believes it is better for the
country that he is free of this particular legal problem.
The dismissal of the Jones case allows him to "feel now that
I'm freer to keep doing what I'm supposed to be doing," he
said in a wide-ranging Time Magazine interview that will be
published this week. "It removes whatever obstacle this case
would have been to my giving everything to this job for the
next two years."
"The charges are not true," he added. "The judge ruled as a
matter of law that case had no merit. And that exposed the
raw political nature of this whole situation."
Jones had sued Clinton for sexual harassment, claiming that
he exposed himself to her and propositioned her in an
Arkansas hotel room in 1991, when she was an Arkansas state
employee and Clinton was the state's governor. U.S. District
Judge Susan Webber Wright threw out the case on Wednesday for
lack of grounds.
"If I were just a private citizen, Joe Six-Pack, I would have
mixed feelings about not getting a chance to disprove these
allegations in court," Clinton told Time managing editor
Walter Isaacson, in a wide-ranging hour long interview aboard
Air Force One, returning from Africa this past week.
"But I don't have mixed feelings as president, because having
the case dismissed and putting this behind us is plainly in
the best interest of the country," he said.
The president also discussed developments in a national
tobacco company agreement and his plans for education
On Sen. John McCain's compromise bill for tobacco, which
would boost tobacco industry payments from $368.5 billion to
$506 billion over 25 years, Clinton said, "While it doesn't
go as far as we'd like in some areas, its a huge step in the
He also voiced worry that budget negotiations could cut into
his plans for education funding next year. "I'm quite
concerned about a series of votes in Congress -- on the
Senate budget resolution and in the House education committee
-- (whose) net impact could be to weaken our commitment to
education," he said.