- The Washington Times - Saturday, October 11, 2014

The National Archives released more than 10,000 pages of White House documents on Friday, revealing the inner workings of the Clinton administration including details of the efforts to cover up of the president’s affair with intern Monica Lewinsky.

The documents contained efforts to defend then President Bill Clinton from impeachment, including talking points and questions prepared for media interviews.

While most of the records related to Ms. Lewinsky were redacted, one document showed that she sent an official request to hang a picture of Mr. Clinton, signing a telecommunications bill, in a White House legislative affairs office, The Associated Press reported.

“There is no evidence whatsoever that the White House was directing or involved in any campaign against her,” Clinton aide Sydney Blumenthal write in a January 1999 memo, adamant that the administration did not mount a personal attack on Ms. Lewinsky.

Included in the documents was a letter from then-MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann apologizing for the network’s obsessive coverage of the Lewinsky scandal.

White House aides mentioned the apology in an October 1998 email exchange, writing “Keith Olbermann has written to POTUS apologizing for ‘whatever part I may have played in perpetuating this ceaseless coverage. … I’ll be heading back to my previous career in sports as quickly as possible…,’ ” Fox News reported.

Although the records did not include any information specifically targeted at former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, the ill-timed release could shine a negative light on her potential 2016 campaign.

The documents touched on the Whitewater investigation into Mr. and Mrs. Clinton’s land dealings in Arkansas, including handwritten notes from a White House meeting in March 1994 with several sour comments from Mrs. Clinton expressing her dissatisfaction with the caliber and competence of her defense.

“We’ve been so incompetent,” Mrs. Clinton complained at one point in the notes to her aides. She added, “yet another meeting that goes nowhere, another useless conversation.”

Mrs. Clinton complained that then-White House counsel Bruce Lindsey’s “weakness” was that he “doesn’t tell you what he doesn’t know.”

She added that the team had “no strategy to deploy resources,” and asked “Why is it we don’t get it done?”

The Clintons were never implicated in the Whitewater case, but their real estate partners, Jim and Susan McDougal, were convicted in a trial as well as then-Arkansas Gov. Jim Guy Tucker.

The documents also revealed the Republican-led investigation into the death of deputy White House counsel Vince Foster in 1993 infuriated the White House, which tried to recruit bestselling author William Styron to write a piece critical of the investigation.

Mrs. Clinton has not announced if she will run for the Democratic nomination in 2016, but said she plans to make her decision “sometime around the first of the year.”

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