By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Stand By Your Man
Sure, her husband's problems have had nothing to do with his wandering eye and two-term turptitude. If it were not for those scheming right wingers that creep Drudge, that bitch Tripp, those insane Freepers all this would never have happened, right? While such a healthy reserve of paranoia is necessary for a New York campaign, Hillary might try to curb her tendency to blame others for the creeping rot that has overtaken her mate's presidency. She has assiduously avoided full disclosure on a host of matters, preferring instead the shrill stonewall. As the First Enabler, she has never blinked when called upon to divert attention from her husband's latest outrage. Perhaps it was her marital obligation. But she regularly goes above and beyond the call of this duty.
Hillary The Hotelier
They may have temporarily taken down the "Vacancy" sign outside the Lincoln Bedroom, but Hillary will have to answer for the tawdry nature of the joint White HouseDemocratic Party fundraising apparatus, a rogue operation that she will no doubt benefit from during the 2000 campaign. Riding shotgun on Bill's forays to Hollywood and East Hampton, Hillary vigorously chased hefty campaign donations while Justice Department bosses were bottling up their own probe into the administration's seamy cash grab. Her campaign white paper on the need for fundraising reforms should be quite amusing (and perhaps a collector's item).
A Whitewater Primer
The grandpappy of all Clinton Scandals, the original Arkansas land deal morphed into a hillbilly hydra. When one line of inquiry died, it seemed as if two others quickly sprouted. Here are the Hillary highlights:
Friends In Low Places
The Clintons initial transaction in 1978 with Jim and Susan McDougal the four of them borrowed $203,000 has been examined endlessly, and there is still no compelling case that they engaged in any illegality. They apparently lost money on the failed land development, a project run into the ground by Jim McDougal, a manic-depressive who screwed up every business he came near. But the Clintons lose some points for their choice of partners.
Another Jim McDougal scam, Castle Grande was an intricate financial fraud disguised as a real estate development. Designed to bilk money from Madison Guaranty, a savings and loan McDougal owned, the Castle Grande sham eventually resulted in criminal convictions for McDougal, former Arkansas governor Jim Guy Tucker, and David Hale, an exmunicipal judge (and Ken Starr witness). While neither of the Clintons invested in this swindle, Hillary had been retained by McDougal to handle some legal matters relating to his S&L. In this capacity, she drafted an option agreement that, federal investigators would later claim, was used by McDougal to deceive bank examiners. And while a report from the Resolution Trust Company cleared Hillary of any wrongdoing in the pillage of Madison Guaranty, this remains a particulalry tawdry episode since it represents her connection to the national S&L scandal that cost taxpayers billions of dollars.
The Missing Billing Records
The full extent of Hillary's Castle Grande work was not known until January 1996, when an aide discovered long-lost billing records sitting on a table in the White House quarters. Though subpoenaed two years earlier by investigators, White House lawyers claimed not to be able to locate the documents, which showed that Hillary spent about 60 hours working for Madison Guaranty over a 15-month period in 198586. Before the records appeared, she claimed that her work for McDougal's S&L was "very limited" and told the RTC that she was not involved in the Castle Grande project. As for Hillary's claim that she had no idea how the billing records ended up on a table in the White House residence, the proper New York response would be: "You gotta be freakin' kidding me!"
Ken Starr's Fantasy Indictment
Though they never pulled the trigger, Ken Starr deputies prepared a draft indictment of Hillary in late 1996, after the billing records mysteriously surfaced. (Over the weekend, The New York Times reported that the independent counsel was contemplating issuing a stern report chastising the First Lady. Note: Add a toilet if Starr releases the dirt close to election day.) But this lands in the close-but-no-cigar file. Heck, it is probably a good bet that Giuliani is still drawing up these dream cases and he left the U.S. Attorney's office a decade ago. In fact, a search of Rudy's coat pocket would probably turn up the fantasy RICO indictment in United States of Americav. David N. Dinkins, Alfred Sharpton, and Edward I. Koch.