Accused of rape why won’t President Clinton scream his innocence?, Why isn’t President Clinton behaving like an innocent man?, Patricia Ireland of NOW “I think that his legal team ought to bring forward some of the documentation”, Newsmax March 2, 1999

Accused of rape why won’t President Clinton scream his innocence?, Why isn’t President Clinton behaving like an innocent man?, Patricia Ireland of NOW “I think that his legal team ought to bring forward some of the documentation”, Newsmax March 2, 1999


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From NewsMax March 2, 1999.

“Accused of Rape, Why Won’t President Clinton Scream His Innocence?”

“Why isn’t President Clinton behaving like an innocent man?

Juanita Broaddrick of Arkansas accused him of raping her in 1978. In a February 24 interview on NBC’s “Dateline,” Broaddrick said she permitted then-Arkansas Attorney General Clinton to have a professional discussion with her in her Little Rock hotel room during a business convention. They had met while she volunteered on his first gubernatorial campaign. After some light banter, she said, Clinton pounced on her, bit her upper lip until it bled and violently penetrated her after tearing through her panty hose. Before he left, Broaddrick said, Clinton donned his sunglasses and remarked about her bloody lip: “You better put some ice on that.” Broaddrick contemporaneously told four others about this alleged incident including her friend Norma Rogers, a nurse who recalls putting ice on Broaddrick’s lip after finding her in shock.

NBC News wrote the White House in early February asking if Broaddrick, a prosperous nursing-home owner, was believable. NBC inquired about Clinton’s whereabouts on April 25, 1978 – the day of the alleged rape – and whether he ever knew Broaddrick, saw her in a hotel room or had any sexual contact with her.

“We got back the two sentence denial from David Kendall, and that’s it,” NBC correspondent Lisa Myers explained on “Meet the Press” February 28.

Kendall, President Clinton’s private attorney, had issued a cryptic statement nine days earlier. “Any allegation that the president assaulted Mrs. Broaddrick more than 20 years ago is absolutely false,” Kendall’s communique read. “Beyond that we are not going to comment.”

But rather than an airtight refutation of Broaddrick’s explosive charges, this statement resembles a bank vault with sliding glass doors. In 1978, Jimmy Carter was president, not Bill Clinton. At that time, Juanita Broaddrick was named Juanita Hickey. Kendall’s concoction also may depend on what the meaning of the word “assault” is. Perhaps Team Clinton has left itself an out should they need to claim that Broaddrick simply misconstrued an act of consensual, albeit very rough, sex.

Someone falsely accused of rape typically would demand to prove his innocence. Instead, President Clinton remains virtually mum and uses his legal wordsmiths as human shields.

Fielding a two-part question on this matter, President Clinton said on February 24: “My counsel has made a statement about the first issue, and I have nothing to add to it.”

Three factors explain Bill Clinton’s latest stonewall strategy. First, Broaddrick’s story is not bulletproof. She waited 21 years to speak up, as Clintonites note. Broaddrick, however, said she doubted anyone would have believed her in 1978, back when rape victims often were considered luckless harlots. Wishing to forget the painful experience, Broaddrick said, she filed an affidavit in the Paula Jones case denying the alleged incident. She later recanted this affirmation after receiving immunity from Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr. Broaddrick finally decided to come forward. “I didn’t want [my] granddaughters and nieces to turn to me and say, ‘Why didn’t you tell what this man did to you?'”

Second, Clinton expects his allies to roll their eyes even at serious rape accusations and demand that he be left alone. They haven’t let him down.

“It is too late in the day, 21 years later, to be deliberating a rape charge here,” Susan Estrich – a Democratic activist, law professor and rape victim – said on “Meet the Press.” “The country wants to move on.”

“There is a legal system out there. It can handle future charges,” said House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt (D – Missouri). “But we need in the Congress to get back to the people’s business.”

And, as if possessed by Salvador Dali, Vice-President Al Gore on February 26 unveiled $223 million in federal grants to “stop violence against women, once and for all.”

Finally, President Clinton understands that Arkansas’ six-year statute of limitations on rape has expired. The star-crossed Senate impeachment trial is over. No forum exists to adjudicate these charges.

Legally, this is true. However, unless the U.S. has become a monarchy, President Clinton owes the American people more than a wave of his scepter. Citizens, journalists, feminists, honest Democrats and sentient Republicans should insist that Bill Clinton explain himself. As Patricia Ireland, President of the National Organization for Women, declared: “I think that his legal team ought to bring forward some of the documentation” on Clinton’s whereabouts in April 1978. “I don’t think we can just say, ‘”Oh, well. It’s too late.'”

Clinton also could clear the air by holding a live, prime-time news conference to answer reporters’ questions until they leave satisfied. Should he ignore these grave charges rather than rebut them, Bill Clinton will have no one but himself to blame if people believe Juanita Broaddrick’s straightforward claim: the President of the United States is a rapist.”

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