Transcript for Jan. 22, 1998: President Clinton under investigation for Lewinsky affair
Good evening we begin tonight with the White House crisis there is no doubt tonight that the Clinton presidency is being menace by these allegations. That the president somehow encouraged the young woman to lie under oath. To protect him the presidential entourage has dutifully tried to circle the wagons but. Morale at the White House is not good and today one of the men closest to mr. Clinton was forced to make a statement. And a statement only that he had done nothing wrong. There are several strands to this story so let's go to our White House correspondent first Sam Donaldson Sam. Peter the White House strategy today was to continue blanket denials of wrongdoing. While stonewalling all's questions about the details of this scandal. The president spoke during a photo opportunity with visiting Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. The allegations. Are false. And I would never ask anybody. To do anything other than tell the truth. Mr. Clinton went on to say the American people have a right to answers and they will come at the appropriate time soon he said but not now. Later Vernon Jordan the president's close friend surfaced before the microphones to deny he's done anything wrong in his dealings with Monica Lewinsky. At no time. Did I ever say. Suggest. Or intimate to her. That she should lie. Jordan said presidential secretary Betty Currie referred Lewinsky to him and he tried to help her find employment at Revlon and an American Express neither company higher order. Andy introduced her to her first lawyer that was all. But he answered no questions saying he's been subpoenaed to appear before the grand jury and will answer everything there. That's your if that's your interpretation that your interprets yet I don't know her and I don't know anything about him yeah the answer. That I game. It was left to presidential spokesman Mike McCurry to sweat it out at the regular daily briefing dodging and weaving. His worst moment coming on the subject of Gennifer Flowers. Who mr. Clinton talked about back in 1992 on sixty minutes. She's alleging. What she calls a twelve year affair with him. That allegation is false. But now with sources saying the president acknowledged last Saturday ms. Paula Jones deposition that he did have an affair with flowers. McCurry was pressed to defend the president's truthfulness. The president knows that he told treatment to. When he was asked about that relationship and he knows that he testified truthfully on Saturday noses answers. But that the public know presidential leadership requires public confidence and stonewalling does not help that. Via president coming up on the state of the unions over matters the country we can expect anything from the president before them. Would like to have this behind of course by next Tuesday but it seems to be impossible. The independent counsel listened over other subpoenas one for Betty Couri the presidential secretary. People make the case here that the president's own lawyers have to get all the facts together and of course that's correct. So it seems doubtful that by next Tuesday meters the president will be able to answer all these questions and dispel all of this extra instruments Sam Donaldson at the White House.
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