Page images

jections to such questions.36 Fourth, perjury and obstruction of justice are federal crimes in civil cases, including sexual harassment cases.37 Fifth, “the evidence suggests that the President and Ms. Lewinsky made false statements under oath and obstructed the judicial process in the Jones v. Clinton case by preventing the court from obtaining the truth about their relationship.” 38 A. Pattern of deception

The OIC reported to the Committee that between December 5, 1997, and January 17, 1998, the President engaged in a pattern of deceptive behavior.39 According to the Referral provided by the OIC, on December 5, 1997, Ms. Jones' attorneys identified Ms. Lewinsky as a potential witness in the sexual harassment lawsuit, and the President learned this fact within a day.40 It is alleged that the President called Ms. Lewinsky at 2:00 a.m. on the morning of December 17, 1997, and informed her that she was a potential witness.41 According to Ms. Lewinsky, the President suggested that she execute an affidavit to deny a sexual relationship and use "cover stories” or lies to explain why she visited the Oval Office on so many occasions.42

It is important to note that an affidavit is a legal document executed under oath. Yet, the President was suggesting that she include falsehoods in the affidavit. The Referral states that on that date the President and Ms. Lewinsky thus had an agreement to lie in their sworn affidavits. 43

A defendant in pending litigation suggesting that a potential witness in the lawsuit lie in an affidavit to avoid being deposed by the plaintiff is a criminal act that flies in the face of judicial integrity. Every American has the duty when under oath to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth in civil and criminal investigations.

Later, on December 23, 1997, the President answered interrogatories in the Jones v. Clinton case under oath.44 Once again, the President, under oath, stated that he had not had sexual relations with any federal employees during a particular time frame.45 As we now know, in fact the President did have sexual relations with a federal employee during the stated time frame. The effect of such lies was borne by Ms. Jones, who suffered the injustice of not having her day in court; she was precluded from presenting all potentially relevant and material evidence to the court.

On Sunday, December 28, 1997, the President met with Ms. Lewinsky at the White House and discussed the gifts the two had exchanged during their relationship.46 “Ms. Lewinsky asked the President 'how he thought (she) got put on the witness list. He speculated that Linda Tripp or one of the uniformed Secret Service officers had told the Jones' attorneys about her. When Ms. Lewinsky mentioned her anxiety about the subpoena's reference to a hat pin, he said that sort of bothered him), too.' He asked whether she had told anyone about the hat pin, and she assured him that she had not. 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 Ms. Lewinsky recalled that the President responded either 'I don't know or 'Let me think about that.'" 47 According to Ms. Lewinsky, later that day the President's secretary, Betty Currie, drove to Ms. Lewinsky's home, picked up the gifts, and took them to her home where she stored them under her bed. 48

36 Id.

37 Id. at 10; see also United States v. Holland, 22 F.3d 1040, 1047-48 (11th Cir. 1994), cert. denied, 513 U.S. 1109 (1995) (rejecting that perjury is less serious when made in a civil proceeding); United States v. McAfee, 8 F.3d 1010, 1013–14 (5th Cir. 1993) (rejecting the argument that the perjury statute does not apply to civil depositions). 38 Statement of Independent

Counsel Kenneth W. Starr Before the House Judiciary Committee, 105th Cong. 2nd Sess. 10 (1998).

39 Id. at 11.
40 Id.
41 Id. at 12.
42 Id.
43 Id. at 13.
44 Id.

It is important to note that these items were under court subpoena. They were potential items of evidence in a pending case. Once again, the facts here demonstrate intent to circumvent the laws. The President testified to the criminal grand jury in August that he had no particular concern about the gifts, yet the circumstantial evidence and the phone records suggest that Ms. Currie was directed to retrieve the gifts. Moreover, when asked about the gifts in the deposition in January 1998 he stated that he did not recall whether he gave Ms. Lewinsky gifts.49 B. Ms. Lewinsky's job search when she was a potential witness

After the Supreme Court held that Ms. Jones was entitled to pursue her case against the President, the facts show that the President, with the help of his close friend and confidant Vernon Jordan, was instrumental in finding Ms. Lewinsky The evidence presented suggests that Vernon Jordan's assistance to Ms. Lewinsky in finding a job was intended to placate Ms. Lewinsky or ensure that she would not become a witness against the President.51 The President wanted to keep Ms. Lewinsky on his side of the sexual harassment suit. If Ms. Lewinsky abandoned their "cover stories,” the lies they used to keep the affair a secret, the President would have been vulnerable in legal and political respects, as will be discussed below. C. Fraud upon the court

The evidence shows that in mid-January Ms. Lewinsky submitted a false affidavit in the Jones v. Clinton case in accordance with the "cover stories” she and the President discussed.52 The President requested to see the affidavit before appearing for his deposition on January 17 and even stated during the deposition that he was "fully

familiar with the contents of Ms. Lewinsky's affidavit.53 The evidence presented shows that the President allowed his attorney to attest to the truthfulness of Ms. Lewinsky's affidavit, and thus inform the court that "there (was) absolutely no sex of any kind in any manner, shape, or form" between the President and Ms. Lewinsky when he knew such information to be false. Such silence is a fraud upon the court. Further, the President was untruthful in the deposition when he testified that Ms. Lewinsky's affidavit was "absolutely true.” 54 Thus, the evidence shows that the President engaged in a pattern of behavior designed to deceive the court in the Jones v. Clinton case through his own deception and that of Ms. Lewinsky.55

46 Id. at 14. 47 OIC Referral at 101. 18 Statement of Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr Before the House Judiciary Committee, 105th Cong. 2nd Sess. 14 (1998).

49 Id. at 15. So Id. at 16.


52 Id. at 17.

53 Id.

The facts also show that the President attempted to coach Ms. Currie after his deposition.56 In regard to his relationship with Ms. Lewinsky the President stated to Ms. Currie: "you were always there when she was there, right? "We were never really alone,” "you could see and hear everything," and "She wanted to have sex with me and I couldn't do that.” 57 Ms. Currie testified that he reiterated these instructions again on either January 20 or 21.58 D. Damage control

After the relationship involving Ms. Lewinsky became public on January 21, 1998, the President's former media consultant, Dick Morris, called the President to show_his empathy.59 Mr. Morris suggested the President confess.60 “The President replied, 'But what about the legal thing? You know the legal thing? You know, Starr and perjury and all' * * * Mr. Morris suggested he conduct a poll and he) called [the President) with the results [of the poll). He stated that the American people were willing to forgive adultery but not perjury or obstruction of justice. The President replied, 'Well, we just have to win, then.'” 61

The President then engaged in a full scale attack on truth and honesty. On January 26, 1998, the President wagged his finger at the American people and denied a sexual relationship with "that woman, Ms. Lewinsky.” He promised to cooperate with the investigation, yet he refused six requests to testify before the grand jury

54 OIC referral at 15. "The President made false statements not only about his intimate relationship with Ms. Lewinsky, but about a whole host of matters. The President testified that he did not know that Vernon Jordan had met with Ms. Lewinsky and talked about the Jones v. Clinton case. That was untrue. He testified that he could not recall being alone with Ms. Lewinsky. That was untrue. He testified that he could not recall ever being in the Oval Office hallway with Ms. Lewinsky except perhaps when she was delivering pizza. That was untrue. He testified that he could not recall gifts exchanged between Ms. Lewinsky and him. That was untrue. He testified-after a 14 second pause_that he was "not sure” whether he had ever talked to Ms. Lewinsky about the possibility that she might be asked to testify in the lawsuit. That was untrue. The President testified that he did not know whether Ms. Lewinsky had been served a subpoena at the time he last saw her December 1997. That was untrue. When his attorney read Ms. Lewinsky's affidavit denying a sexual relationship, the President stated that the affidavit was "absolutely true.” That was untrue.” Id. at 18-19.

55 Id. at 19. 56 Id. at 20. 58 Id. at 21.

so Id. at 22. Mr. Morris then conducted a poll to gauge public opinion. Questions in the poll included the following: “13. If President Clinton did lie and encouraged Monica to lie, do you think he should be removed from office? (the numbers "48–41" were written below the question) 14. If President Clinton lied, he committed the crime of perjury. If he encouraged Monica to lie, he committed the crime of obstruction of justice. In view of these facts, do you think President Clinton should be removed from office? (the numbers “60–30" were written below the question)” OIC Referral, part 2, H. Doc. 106-316, at 2956 (1998)(hereinafter H. Doc. 106–316).

60 Statement of Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr Before the House Judiciary Committee, 105th Cong., 2nd Sess. 21 (1998).

57 Id.

over a period of six months. He lied to his aides about the nature of his relationship with Ms. Lewinsky. Some of these aides then testified before the grand jury and unwittingly perpetuated these falsehoods. They also repeated the falsehoods in the public, the press and to some Members of Congress, who in turn began to characterize her as “a stalker,” a “poor child * * * with serious emotional problems,” and “she's fantasizing. And I haven't heard she played with a full deck in other experiences," and other similar comments.62 Chief Investigative Counsel David Schippers accused the White House of employing "the full power and credibility of the White House and the press corps to destroy" Ms. Lewinsky. This tactic was also used to attack the credibility of Paula Jones, the plaintiff in Jones v. Clinton. These actions by the President demonstrate a clear intent to mislead and impede the pursuit of the truth.63 It is worth noting that sources within the White House stopped these vicious when there rumors that Ms. Lewinsky saved her blue dress stained with semen. E. Grand jury testimony on August 17, 1998 64

Finally, when the President appeared before the federal criminal grand jury on August 17, 1998,65 he testified that he did not lie in his civil deposition.66 He also "denied any conduct that would establish that he had lied under oath at his civil deposition. The President thus denied certain conduct with Ms. Lewinsky and devised a variety of tortured and false definitions.” 67

Thus, over the eight-month period at issue, evidence has been presented that the President: made false statements under oath in a civil deposition, made false statements before a criminal grand jury, made false statements to his Cabinet and other professional staff, tampered with witnesses, obstructed justice by tampering with items under subpoena, and attempted to hide under a veil of Presidential authority to conceal the relationship and protect himself from investigation.68 F. The allegations are supported by evidence

Physical evidence establishes the relationship between the President and Ms. Lewinsky. DNA tests conducted on semen stains from Ms. Lewinsky's clothing indicate that the President was the source of the semen.69 The tests demonstrated that the “genetic markers on the semen, which match the President's DNA, are characteristic of one out of 7.87 trillion Caucasians. 70

62 Rep. Charles Rangel, Democrat of New York. 63 Id. at 23. 64 It is important to note that the Independent Counsel received permission from the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to disclose grand jury materials in accordance with its duty to report to Congress under 28 U.S.C. $ 595(c). OIC REFERRAL 5 n.18. Generally, disclosure of grand jury testimony is prohibited under Rule 6(e) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. See Fed. R. Crim. P. 6 (e).

65 The President was admonished by members of the Senate as to the absolute requirement that the President answer the questions put to him truthfully. Senator Hatch stated: “So help me, if he lies before the grand jury, that will be grounds for impeachment.” Id. at 28. Similarly, Senator Moynihan stated that perjury before a grand jury is an impeachable offense. Id.

66 Id.

67 Id. Members on the Judiciary Committee have stated that the President was dishonest before the Grand Jury. Id. Senator-elect Schumer stated, “it is clear that the President lied when he testified before the grand jury.Id. Congressman Meehan stated that the President “engaged in a dangerous game of verbal Twister.” Id.

68 Id. at 29.
69 OIC Referral at 11.

The allegations are also supported by extensive de-briefing of Ms. Lewinsky. 71 An initial interview was conducted with Ms. Lewinsky on July 27, 1998, to evaluate her credibility.72 She was further interviewed over fifteen days, and provided testimony under oath on three occasions.73 The OIC Referral states that: “[i]n the evaluation of experienced prosecutors and investigators, Ms. Lewinsky has provided truthful information. She has not falsely inculpated the President. Harming him, she has testified, is “the last thing in the world I want to do."" 74

Testimony and information from numerous confidants of Ms. Lewinsky also provided information to the Independent Counsel.75 Approximately eleven individuals received contemporaneous information from Ms. Lewinsky about her involvement with the President.76 These individuals were questioned. Many of them provided testimony under oath before a federal grand jury.77 Documents also lend support to Ms. Lewinsky's account.78

V. VIOLATIONS OF LAW This constitutional inquiry is not about sex or private conduct. This inquiry is about enforcing the law and demonstrating that: multiple obstructions of justice, multiple instances of perjury, the practice of engaging in false and misleading statements to the court, and witness tampers are attacks on the integrity of our system of justice.

As stated by Mr. Schippers, Chief Investigative Counsel, before the Judiciary Committee on December 10, 1998, “the real issues are whether the President of the United States testified falsely under oath; whether he engaged in a continuing plot to obstruct justice, to hide evidence, to tamper with witnesses and to abuse the power of his office in furtherance of that plot. The ultimate issue is whether the President's course of conduct is such as to affect adversely the Office of the Presidency by bringing scandal and disrespect upon it and also upon the administration of justice, and whether he has acted in a manner contrary to his trust as President and subversive to the Rule of Law and Constitutional government.”

70 Id. at 12. 71 Id. 72 Id. 73 Id.

74 Id. It is important to note that Ms. Lewinsky engaged in a cooperation agreement that includes safeguards to ensure that she tells the truth. Id. Under the cooperation agreement her immunity could be removed altogether by a federal district judge if it is found by a preponderance of the evidence that she lied. The “preponderance” standard, in basic terms, is comparable to a “more likely than not” standard and is not as difficult to prove as the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard. Thus, if a federal judge finds that she lied, she could be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

75 Id. at 13. 76 Id.

77 Id.

78 Id. at 14.

« PreviousContinue »