Currie Returns For More Grand Jury Testimony
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, May 7) -- President Bill Clinton's personal secretary, Betty Currie, left the federal courthouse Thursday shortly after 12:30 p.m. EDT, ending her third appearance before the grand jury probing former White House intern Monica Lewinsky's relationship with Clinton.
Currie did not stop to address reporters after her morning in the courtroom, but her lawyer, Lawrence Wechsler, said she will return next week to continue her testimony.
On Wednesday Currie looked strained from her eight hours with the grand jury. Her lawyer said then his client expected to return for further questioning. He also said she would not be making any public statements and asked the media to respect Currie's privacy and not camp out in front of her suburban Washington home.
The president's secretary has been described by the president and by Clinton friend Vernon Jordan as Lewinsky's friend, responsible for their involvement with the former White House intern.
The grand jury is looking into allegations Clinton had a sexual relationship with Lewinsky and encouraged her to lie about it under oath. Clinton has denied both accusations.
One of the Oval Office "gatekeepers," Currie would have knowledge of any visits Lewinsky made to the Oval Office plus details of gift-giving and job search help extended to Lewinsky. When it comes to Lewinsky, Currie is the president's alibi.
In his sworn deposition in the Paula Jones sexual harassment case, the president gave a simple explanation for evidence suggesting he had a relationship with Lewinsky: Monica and Betty were friends.
Why did Lewinsky visit the White House in late December, after she was subpoenaed by Jones' lawyers? The president said, "She came to see Betty."
Why did Jordan help Lewinsky in her job search? "I think Betty suggested that he meet with her," Clinton said.
Why did the president buy presents for Lewinsky while on vacation in Martha's Vineyard? "I gave Betty a couple of the pieces, and she gave I think something to Monica," he said.
Currie figured so prominently in his sworn deposition that the president called her when it was over on a Saturday night. They met the next day at the White House to go over the testimony.
Currie played another key role: she signed for gifts Lewinsky sent to the president. And when Jones' lawyers subpoenaed gifts the president gave Lewinsky, she turned them over to Currie.
Since the Lewinsky story erupted three months ago, Currie has continued her day-to-day duties at the White House She also accompanied the president on his recent 12-day trip to Africa.
Currie's friends describe her as a deeply religious woman who would not lie to protect the president. But she doesn't seem a hostile witness either. Currie's lawyer is part of a joint defense agreement with the president's legal team.
CNN's Jonathan Karl contributed to this report.