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Paula Jones

From dKosopedia

Paula Corbin Jones (born Paula Rosalee Corbin on September 17, 1966 in Lonoke], Arkansas) was a former state employee who sued President Bill Clinton claiming he sexual harassed her. While the case was ultimately dismissed as groundless, Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr used his then finishing Whitewater investigation to take up the Paula Jones claims of sexual harrassment as a line of investigation. In casting a net to find criminal wrongdoing by President Clinton, went on to pursue claims of sexual misconduct by President Clinton with Monica Lewinsky. The resulting scandal which erupted when it was revealed that she performed oral sex on President Clinton, lead to the impeachment of President Clinton.



According to her story, in 1991 she was escorted to the hotel room of Clinton, then governor of Arkansas, where he crudely propositioned her. She kept quiet about the incident until 1994, when a David Brock story in American Spectator told a story, popularly referred to as "Troopergate", about an Arkansas employee named "Paula" offering to be Clinton's girlfriend. Jones filed a sexual harassment suit against Clinton in May 1994.

Jones began to be represented by Susan Carpenter-McMillan, Gilbert Davis and Joseph Cammarata. Carpenter-McMillan wasted no time in using the press to attack Clinton to a much greater degree, calling him "un-American," a "liar," and a "philanderer" on Meet the Press, Crossfire, Equal Time, Larry King Live, Today, The Geraldo Rivera Show, Burden of Proof, Hannity & Colmes, Talkback Live, and other shows. "I do not respect a man who dodges the draft, cheats on his wife, and exposes his wee-wee to a stranger," she said.

Ann Coulter, then a commentator for MSNBC, then became a secret unpaid legal adviser helping Jones' attorneys. Coulter had begun writing a column for the magazine Human Events, a column that soon included analysis of the Paula Jones case. Coulter's friend George Conway had been asked to assist Jones' attorneys, and shortly afterwards Coulter was asked to help also and began writing legal briefs for the case.

Coulter said she would come to mistrust the motives of Paula Jones' head lawyer, Joseph Cammaratta, who told Jones she didn't have a case and should take a settlement. (Daley, 1999) Since the beginning of the lawsuit, Jones had wanted an apology from Clinton as much as or more than a settlement (Barak, 1998), and Coulter said she, Coulter, believed that from her own knowledge of the case that Jones' case was solid, that Jones was telling the truth and Clinton should be held publicly accountable for his misconduct, and that if Jones only took a settlement, it would make Jones look as if she were only extorting money from the President. (Daley, 1999)

David Daley of the Hartford Courant continues the account:

Coulter played one particularly key role in keeping the Jones case alive. In Newsweek reporter Michael Isikoff's new book Uncovering Clinton: A Reporter's Story, Coulter is unmasked as the one who leaked word of Clinton's "distinguishing characteristic" -- his reportedly bent penis that Jones said she could recognize and describe -- to the news media. Her hope was to foster mistrust between the Clinton and Jones camps and forestall a settlement....
"I thought if I leaked the distinguishing characteristic it would show bad faith in negotiations. [Clinton lawyer] Bob Bennett would think Jones had leaked it. Cammaratta would know he himself hadn't leaked it and would get mad at Bennett. It might stall negotiations enough for me to get through to [Jones adviser] Susan Carpenter-McMillan to tell her that I thought settling would hurt Paula, that this would ruin her reputation, and that there were other lawyers working for her. Then 36 hours later, she returned my phone call.
"I just wanted to help Paula. I really think Paula Jones is a hero. I don't think I could have taken the abuse she came under. She's this poor little country girl and she has the most powerful man she's ever met hitting on her sexually, then denying it and smearing her as president. And she never did anything tacky. It's not like she was going on TV or trying to make a buck out of it." (1999)

According to the website Coulter Watch, Coulter also told writer Isikoff, "We were terrified that Jones would settle. It was contrary to our purpose of bringing down the president" ("Oh, Paula", 2002, par. 5, 2).

In September 1997, Jones' attorneys Gilbert Davis and Joseph Cammarata both quit the case, after Carpenter-McMillan advised Jones to reject the settlement offer from Clinton because it didn't come with an apology. Carpenter-McMillan's husband, personal-injury lawyer William McMillan, then became Jones' chief attorney, while Carpenter-McMillan continued to serve as Jones' spokeswoman, chair her legal fund, and run her fund-raising Website. Under her influence, Jones underwent a substantial 'fashion makeover' in early 1998. "I talked to her as a friend," Carpenter-McMillan said, "I don't know that anyone had ever talked to her about her hair." Jones' permed curly dark 'big hair' was converted to a softer, smoother, straight hairstyle in a lighter brown color; her makeup changed from brighter colors to more subtle shades; her clothing went from faddish short skirts and garish accessories to conservative pantsuits. Most observers agreed that she had had a subtle rhinoplasty, although Jones and Carpenter-Mcmillan denied it, saying "She has not had a nose job! She has not had plastic surgery at all. We couldn't afford it." The net effect, it was universally agreed, was to change her image from unreliable 'trailer trash', as the Clinton organization had been portraying her, to a sober, reliable, competent professional.

However, when the case did go to court, it was summarily dismissed as groundless, in that the judge ruled that Jones could not show that she had suffered any damages whatsoever, even should all her charges prove true. Jones did eventually gain a settlement from Clinton in exchange for not appealing the decision, but it was only $850,000, one third the size she had been asking for, and all but $151,000 went to pay her now considerable legal expenses; meanwhile, her marriage had broken apart.

Jones now claims she was victimized by both Clinton and his Republican opponents. Her legal fund did not cover the attorneys' fees and Jones (who had divorced her husband during the case, purchased a house after the settlement, and incurred a large tax bill) then posed nude for Penthouse magaziine, stating that she wished to use the money to pay the tax and fund her two grade-school-aged children's college education. This caused her to be publicly denounced as "trailer-park trash" by Coulter, who said, "I totally believed she was the good Christian girl she made herself out to be... [N]ow it turns out she's a fraud, at least to the extent of pretending to be an honorable and moral person." Jones defended herself on Larry King Live, saying, "I haven't been out doing anything and trying to make a lot of money. I haven't been offered a book deal like everybody else in this huge thing has done. Ann Coulter's done books. I haven't seen her call me up and say: 'Paula, would you like for me to help you write a book, a really nice, decent book?' I haven't had any help from anybody whatsoever."

Jones subsequently appeared in a boxing match against Tonya Harding in Fox TV's Celebrity Boxing in 2002, where she lost.

Quotes related to Paula Jones' sexual harrassment allegation against President Clinton


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This page was last modified 01:02, 27 June 2006 by Chad Lupkes. Based on work by dKosopedia user(s) Allamakee Democrat and Lestatdelc. Content is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License.

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