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Star Ethics In Government Star

January 26, 1998



William Heartstone, Daily Republican Staff Writer

WASHINGTON DESK - A somber and worried president Clinton attempted to add confidence to the tone of yet another carefully worded I am Not A Crook denial today, in which he said 'I did not have sexual relations with that woman - Ms. Lewinsky. I never told anyone to lie. Not a single time. Never. These allegations are false. I need to go back to work.'

The tarnished credibility of the president on the issue of his truthfulness and extra-curricular White House activities automatically raises questions about president Clinton's basic honesty and misleading prior inconsistent statements. The actual intent of the president appears to hinge on his personal definition of what constitutes sexual relations. It also appears that Clinton's position on the meaning of his language is subject to tortured legal metaphors which the American public are not on guard against.

Making matters even more complicated for the White House is the fact that the president, again linked several separate statements together, referring to his rendition as '...these allegations...' leading observers to question which part of the couplet president Clinton was actually denying.

Reporters attempted to ask a number of questions, and to parse his tortured legalisms, but Clinton refused to answer reporters inquiries and abruptly left the podium, retreating into the depths of the White House today.

Still at issue and unresolved by Clinton's terse and truncated statement is whether Lewinsky made false statements under oath when she denied having an affair with Clinton and whether she was encouraged by the president and under his direction to mis-state facts in a sworn statement she would make.

The attorney for Lewinsky, has something to add, however. Ginsburg is seeking to meet with Ken Starr to discuss Starr's previous offer of immunity in exchange for Lewinsky's complete cooperation.

The White House, meanwhile, has been stunned into having Clinton appear this morning at the news conference in an attempt to counter reports that prosecutors are investigating the possibility that an uninvolved witness may have observed Clinton in a compromising sexual situation with Lewinsky in the White House.

The president's sworn statement of denial and his verbal responses to questions fly in the face of what investigators consider credible indications that there is an eye-witness who saw Clinton and Lewinsky together in the improper sexual assignation.

Sources told reporters, Lewinsky has revealed to co-worker Linda Tripp, that she believed she was exiled from her White House job to the Pentagon because she and Clinton had been caught in the act.

New public opinion polls showed that Clinton's personal standing in the opinion polls is sinking faster, in spite of his previous high marks on job performance.

Lewinsky is scheduled to be brought before a federal grand jury Tuesday.

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