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 TIME on politics Congressional Quarterly CNN/AllPolitics CNN/AllPolitics - Storypage, with TIME and Congressional Quarterly
Investigating The President



B. December 22: Meeting with Vernon Jordan

Mr. Jordan arranged for Ms. Lewinsky to meet with attorney Francis Carter at 11:00 a.m. on Monday, December 22.(847) On that morning, according to Ms. Lewinsky, she called Mr. Jordan and asked to meet before they went to Mr. Carter's office.(848) She testified: "I was a little concerned. I thought maybe [Mr. Jordan] didn't really understand . . . what it was that was happening here with me being subpoenaed and what this really meant."(849) She also wanted to find out whether he had in fact told the President of her subpoena. Mr. Jordan said that he had.(850) Ms. Lewinsky also told Mr. Jordan that she was worried that someone might have been eavesdropping on her telephone conversations with the President.(851) When Mr. Jordan asked why she thought that would be of concern, Ms. Lewinsky said, "Well, we've had phone sex."(852)

Ms. Lewinsky testified that she brought some of her gifts from the President, showed them to Mr. Jordan, and implied that these items were not all of the gifts that the President had given her.(853) Mr. Jordan, in contrast, testified that Ms. Lewinsky never showed him any gifts from the President.(854)

C. December 22: First Meeting with Francis Carter

Mr. Jordan drove Ms. Lewinsky to Mr. Carter's office.(855) There, he introduced Ms. Lewinsky to Mr. Carter, explaining that she needed not only a lawyer but a "counselor."(856) Mr. Carter testified that, after the initial referral, he expected to have no further contact with Mr. Jordan about Ms. Lewinsky or her case.(858)

Mr. Carter and Ms. Lewinsky then met for approximately an hour.(859) She explained that she did not want to be drawn into the Jones case and would strongly prefer not to be deposed.(860) He said that he would try to persuade Paula Jones's attorneys not to depose her.(861) Ms. Lewinsky testified that she suggested filing an affidavit to avert a deposition.(862)

According to Ms. Lewinsky, she asked Mr. Carter to get in touch with the President's personal attorney, Robert Bennett, just "to let him know that I had been subpoenaed in this case."(863) She wanted to make clear that she was "align[ing] [her]self with the President's side."(864) Mr. Carter testified that, while Ms. Lewinsky was in his office, he placed a call to Mr. Bennett to arrange a meeting.(865)

On the morning of Tuesday, December 23, Mr. Carter met for an hour with two of the President's personal attorneys, Mr. Bennett and Katherine Sexton.(866) The President's attorneys told Mr. Carter that other witnesses had filed motions to quash their subpoenas, and they offered legal research to support such a motion.(867)

D. December 23: Clinton Denials to Paula Jones

Throughout the sexual harassment case, Ms. Jones's attorneys attempted to obtain information about President Clinton's sexual relationships with any woman other than his wife. On December 11, 1997, the judge overseeing the Jones case, Susan Webber Wright, ruled that the President had to answer a written interrogatory naming every state and federal employee since 1986 with whom he had sexual relations or with whom he had proposed to have sexual relations. On December 23, 1997, the President answered the interrogatory: "None."(868)

E. December 28: Final Meeting with the President

A day or two after Christmas, Ms. Lewinsky called Ms. Currie and told her that the President had mentioned that he had presents for her.(869) Ms. Currie called back and told her to come to the White House at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, December 28.(870)

That morning, Ms. Lewinsky met with the President in the Oval Office. WAVES records reflect that the visit was requested by Ms. Currie and that Ms. Lewinsky entered the White House at 8:16 a.m.(871)

After she arrived at the Oval Office, she, the President, and Ms. Currie played with Buddy, the President's dog, and chatted. Then, the President took her to the study and gave her several Christmas presents: a marble bear's head, a Rockettes blanket, a Black Dog stuffed animal, a small box of chocolates, a pair of joke sunglasses, and a pin with a New York skyline on it.(872)

Ms. Lewinsky testified that, during this visit, she and the President had a "passionate" and "physically intimate" kiss.(873)

Ms. Lewinsky and the President also talked about the Jones case.(874) In Ms. Lewinsky's account, she asked the President "how he thought [she] got put on the witness list."(875) He speculated that Linda Tripp or one of the uniformed Secret Service officers had told the Jones attorneys about her.(876) When Ms. Lewinsky mentioned her anxiety about the subpoena's reference to a hat pin, he said "that sort of bothered [him], too."(877) He asked whether she had told anyone about the hat pin, and she assured him that she had not.(878)

At some point in the conversation, Ms. Lewinsky told the President, "[M]aybe I should put the gifts away outside my house somewhere or give them to someone, maybe Betty."(879) Ms. Lewinsky recalled that the President responded either "I don't know" or "Let me think about that."(880)

When Ms. Lewinsky was asked whether she thought it odd for the President to give her gifts under the circumstances (with a subpoena requiring the production of all his gifts), she testified that she did not think of it at the time, but she did note some hesitancy on the President's part:

[H]e had hesitated very briefly right before I left that day in kind of packaging . . . all my stuff back up . . . I don't think he said anything that indicated this to me, but I thought to myself, "I wonder if he's thinking he shouldn't give these to me to take out." But he did.(881)

When asked in the Jones deposition about his last meeting with Ms. Lewinsky, the President remembered only that she stopped by "[p]robably sometime before Christmas" and he "stuck [his] head out [of the office], said hello to her."(882) The deposition occurred three weeks after this December 28 meeting with Ms. Lewinsky.

In the grand jury, the President acknowledged "talking with Ms. Lewinsky about her testimony, or about the prospect that she might have to give testimony. And she, she talked to me about that."(883) He maintained, however, that they did not discuss Ms. Lewinsky's subpoena: "[S]he was upset. She -- well, she -- we -- she didn't -- we didn't talk about a subpoena. But she was upset."(884) In the President's recollection, Ms. Lewinsky said she knew nothing about sexual harassment; why did she have to testify? According to the President, "I explained to her that it was a political lawsuit. They wanted to get whatever they could under oath that was damaging to me."(885)

Ms. Lewinsky's friend, Catherine Allday Davis, testified about a conversation with Ms. Lewinsky on January 3, 1998. Ms. Lewinsky told Ms. Davis that she had met with the President and discussed the Jones case a few days earlier. Ms. Davis testified that Ms. Lewinsky and the President had "noted [that] there was no evidence" of their relationship.(887)

E. December 28: Concealment of Gifts

In the afternoon of December 28, a few hours after Ms. Lewinsky's White House visit, Ms. Currie drove to Ms. Lewinsky's Watergate apartment and collected a box containing the President's gifts. Ms. Currie then took the box home and hid it under her bed. Ms. Lewinsky, Ms. Currie, and the President were all questioned as to why Ms. Currie retrieved the box of gifts from Ms. Lewinsky.

According to Ms. Lewinsky, the transfer originated in a phone call from Ms. Currie that afternoon. Ms. Lewinsky testified that Ms. Currie said, "I understand you have something to give me," or, "The President said you have something to give me."(888) Ms. Lewinsky understood that Ms. Currie was alluding to the gifts.(889) Ms. Currie said that she would stop by Ms. Lewinsky's apartment and pick up the items.(890) Ms. Lewinsky testified that she put many, but not all, of her gifts from the President into a box. Ms. Currie drove by her apartment and picked it up.(891)

Ms. Lewinsky was concerned because the gifts were under subpoena; she did not throw them away, however, because "they meant a lot to [her]."(892) The reason she gave the gifts to Ms. Currie, and not to one of her friends or her mother, was "a little bit of an assurance to the President . . . that everything was okay."(893) She felt that, because the gifts were with Ms. Currie, they were within the President's control: "Not that [the gifts] were going to be in his possession, but that he would understand whatever it was I gave to Betty and that that might make him feel a little bit better."(894)

Ms. Lewinsky's account of the events of December 28 in her sworn statement of February 1, 1998, corroborates her later grand jury testimony:

"Ms. L . . . asked if she should put away (outside her home) the gifts he had given her or, maybe, give them to someone else. Ms. Currie called Ms. L later that afternoon as said that the Pres. had told her Ms. L. wanted her to hold onto something for her. Ms. L boxed up most of the gifts she had received and gave them to Ms. Currie. It is unknown if Ms. Currie knew the contents of the box."(895)

Ms. Currie's testimony was somewhat at odds with Ms. Lewinsky's. Though her overall recollection was hazy, Ms. Currie believed that Ms. Lewinsky had called her and raised the idea of the gifts transfer.(896) Ms. Currie was asked about the President's involvement in the transfer:

Q: And did the President know you were holding these things for Monica?

BC: I don't know. I don't know.

Q: Didn't he say to you that Monica had something for you to hold?

BC: I don't remember that. I don't.

Q: Did you ever talk to the President and tell him you had this box from Monica?

BC: I don't remember that either.

Q: Do you think it happened, though?

BC: I don't know. I don't know.(897)

When asked whether a statement by Ms. Lewinsky indicating that Ms. Currie had in fact spoken to the President about the gift transfer would be false, Ms. Currie replied: "Then she may remember better than I. I don't remember."(898)

According to Ms. Currie, Ms. Lewinsky said that she was uncomfortable retaining the gifts herself because "people were asking questions" about them.(899) Ms. Currie said she drove to Ms. Lewinsky's residence after work, collected the box, brought it home, and put it under her bed.(900) Written on the top of the box were the words "Please do not throw away!!!"(901) Ms. Currie testified that she knew that the box contained gifts from the President.(902)

For his part, the President testified that he never asked Ms. Currie to collect a box of gifts from Ms. Lewinsky.(903) He said that he had no knowledge that Ms. Currie had held those items "until that was made public."(904)

The President testified that he has no distinct recollection of discussing the gifts with Ms. Lewinsky on December 28: "[M]y memory is that on some day in December, and I'm sorry I don't remember when it was, she said, well, what if they ask me about the gifts you have given me. And I said, well, if you get a request to produce those, you have to give them whatever you have."(905)

D. December 31: Breakfast with Vernon Jordan

Ms. Lewinsky testified that in late December 1997 she realized that she needed to "come up with some sort of strategy as to [what to do] if Linda Tripp" divulged what she knew.(906) On December 30, Ms. Lewinsky telephoned Mr. Jordan's office and conveyed either directly to him or through one of his secretaries that she was concerned about the Jones case.(907)

The following day, Ms. Lewinsky and Mr. Jordan had breakfast together at the Park Hyatt Hotel.(908) According to Ms. Lewinsky, she told Mr. Jordan that a friend of hers, Linda Tripp, was involved in the Jones case. She told Mr. Jordan: "I used to trust [Ms. Tripp], but I didn't trust her any more."(909) Ms. Lewinsky said that Ms. Tripp might have seen some notes in her apartment. Mr. Jordan asked: "Notes from the President to you?" Ms. Lewinsky responded: "No, notes from me to the President." According to Ms. Lewinsky, Mr. Jordan said: "Go home and make sure they're not there." Ms. Lewinsky testified that she understood that Mr. Jordan was advising her to "throw . . . away" any copies or drafts of notes that she had sent to the President.(910)

After breakfast, Mr. Jordan gave Ms. Lewinsky a ride back to his office.(911) When Ms. Lewinsky returned home to her apartment that day, she discarded approximately 50 draft notes to the President.(912)

E. January 4: The Final Gift

On Sunday, January 4, 1998, Ms. Lewinsky called Ms. Currie at home and told her that she wanted to drop off a gift for the President.(913) Ms. Currie invited Ms. Lewinsky to her home, and Ms. Lewinsky gave her the package.(914) The package contained a book entitled The Presidents of the United States and a love note inspired by the movie Titanic.(915)

XIII. January 5-January 16, 1998:

The Affidavit

On January 5, 1998, Ms. Lewinsky's attorney, Francis Carter, drafted an affidavit for Ms. Lewinsky in an attempt to avert her deposition. She spoke with the President that evening. On January 6, Ms. Lewinsky talked to Mr. Jordan about the affidavit, which denied any sexual relations between her and the President. On January 7, Ms. Lewinsky signed the affidavit. On January 8, she interviewed for a job in New York City. After the interview went poorly, Mr. Jordan placed a phone call to the company's chairman on her behalf, and Ms. Lewinsky was given a second interview. The following week, after Ms. Lewinsky told Ms. Currie that she would need a reference from the White House, the President asked Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles to arrange one.

A. January 5: Francis Carter Meeting

At 3:00 p.m. on Monday, January 5, 1998, Ms. Lewinsky met with Mr. Carter at his office for approximately one hour.(916)

Ms. Lewinsky testified that Mr. Carter described what a deposition was like and "threw out a bunch of different questions."(917) The questions that most concerned her related to the circumstances of her departure from the White House.(918)

Mr. Carter told Ms. Lewinsky that he would draft an affidavit for her to sign in hopes of averting her deposition. They arranged for Ms. Lewinsky to pick up a draft of the affidavit the next day.(919)

B. January 5: Call from the President

After her meeting with Mr. Carter, Ms. Lewinsky sent word via Ms. Currie that she needed to speak to the President about an important matter.(920) Specifically, Ms. Lewinsky told Ms. Currie she was anxious about something she needed to sign.(921)

A few hours later, according to Ms. Lewinsky, the President returned her call.(922) She mentioned an affidavit she would be signing and asked if he wanted to see it. According to Ms. Lewinsky, the President responded that he did not, as he had already seen about fifteen others.(923) Ms. Lewinsky testified that she told the President that she was troubled by potential questions about her transfer from the White House to the Pentagon. She was concerned that "people at the White House who didn't like [her]" might contradict her and "get [her] in trouble."(924) The President, according to Ms. Lewinsky, advised her: "[Y]ou could always say that the people in Legislative Affairs got it [the Pentagon job] for you or helped you get it."(925)

The President acknowledged in the grand jury that he was aware that Ms. Lewinsky had signed an affidavit in early January, but had no specific recollection of a conversation with her in that time period.(926) He testified that he did not recall telling Ms. Lewinsky that she could say, if asked, that persons in the Legislative Affairs Office of the White House had helped her obtain the job at the Pentagon.(927)

According to Ms. Lewinsky, she and the President also briefly discussed an antique book that she had dropped off with Ms. Currie the day before. With the book, she enclosed a letter telling the President that she wanted to have sexual intercourse with him at least once.(928) In their phone conversation, Ms. Lewinsky told the President, "I shouldn't have written some of those things in the note."(929) She testified that the President agreed.(930)

Although the President had testified in the Jones case that any personal messages from Ms. Lewinsky to him had been "unremarkable," he told the grand jury that he had received "quite affectionate" messages from Ms. Lewinsky, even after their intimate relationship ended.(931) The President testified that he cautioned Ms. Lewinsky about such messages: "I remember telling her she should be careful what she wrote, because a lot of it was clearly inappropriate and would be embarrassing if somebody else read it. I don't remember when I said that. I don't remember whether it was in '96 or when it was."(932) The President did remember the antique book Ms. Lewinsky had given him, but said he did not recall a romantic note enclosed with it.(933)



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