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Jewish World Review /March 1, 1999 /12 Adar, 5759

Don Feder

Don Feder Public will blot out Broaddrick's accusation

(JWR) --- (http://www.jewishworldreview.com) ON WEDNESDAY EVENING, NBC finally aired the Juanita Broaddrick interview. No one who saw the "Dateline" segment could fail to be impressed by the seeming sincerity of this 56-year-old businesswoman, who had to be practically dragged into the spotlight (deposed in the Paula Jones case, interviewed by the independent counsel ).

Broaddrick charges that in 1978 then-Arkansas Attorney General Bill Clinton raped her in a Little Rock hotel room -- not the same Little Rock hotel room where Jones claims the president-to-be exposed himself and requested oral sex in 1991, a matter he recently settled for $850,000.

According to Broaddrick, she agreed to meet Clinton, who was running for governer, to discuss nursing homes. As an owner, she wanted to give the candidate her input.

Instead, Broaddrick says, the feminist icon threw her on a bed, bit her lip and raped her. As he was leaving the room, Broaddrick relates, Clinton adjusted his sunglasses and told her to put ice on the lip before it swelled. He felt her pain.

There's no telltale dress. But Broaddrick's charges are bolstered by four witnesses who heard the story at the time. They include a nurse employed at her facility, who found Broaddrick crying on the bed with a bruised lip after the attack.

The story fits the presidential perp's m.o. Here's a man who is reckless to the point of lunacy, impulse-driven and accustomed to treating women as objects to gratify his urges.

Is it hard to believe that a degenerate who would: 1) flash a lady he'd just met who was escorted into his presence by a state trooper, 2) grope a desperate woman who came to him for a job (Kathleen Willey is lucky there wasn't a mattress handy) and 3) commence an affair with a White House intern minutes after she snapped her thong bikini at him, would have committed a sexual assault at some point in time?

How proud Senate Democrats and Hollywood donors must be for helping this president cling to office in the face of clearly impeachable offenses (perjury and obstruction of justice).

Are they now shocked, truly shocked, to discover that their hero, described by Vice President Al Gore as "one of our greatest presidents," may be a rapist? The media, which throughout the impeachment process chanted a mantra -- it's partisan, the public doesn't want it, Republicans are committing suicide -- continues to function as the alter ego of White House Communications Director Joe Lockhart.

NBC, which taped the Broaddrick interview on Jan. 20, would probably still be sitting on it if The Wall Street Journal didn't break the story last Friday. As it is, the network decided to run the interview against the Grammys.

In its March 1 issue, Time magazine cast a skeptical eye on the bombshell. In the brief story (appended to 10 pages of Hillary-for-Senate adulation), Time somehow neglected to mention those four corroborating witnesses. The article ended with Broaddrick saying, "I'm just hoping that this absolutely goes away in the next week." To this, Time editorially commented, "A weary nation would probably agree." Yes, it's time to move on.

On Wednesday, The New York Times buried Broaddrick on the bottom of page A-16. Like Time, it tried to impugn the Journal's credibility.

The Times: "The (Wall Street) Journal's editorial page, one of the nation's most conservative and a strident critic of Mr. Clinton." Time: "Precise details of the allegation were published in The Wall Street Journal's vociferously conservative pages." The limited right-wing conspiracy, I presume?

When it comes to values, the American people are in a stupor. They've been told for so long that there's no relationship between private conduct and public performance that they're probably prepared to tolerate a rapist who presides over a record stock market.

In fact, Clinton's behavior (in office and in hotel rooms) is disgracefully consistent. He lies, cheats, betrays and exploits without qualms. Whether it's Kosovo and taxes, or testimony under oath, he can be trusted only to be untrustworthy.

Still, the majority didn't care about revelations of adultery and draft-dodging in 1992. When the president turned the White House into a cat house, they only shook their heads and blamed Kenneth Starr.

Even though opinion polls showed most thought the president lied under oath, they were insistent that he not be removed. Therefore, the tendency will be not to disbelieve Broaddrick's accusation, but to simply blot it out of our consciousness.

You think Bill Clinton is doing a dynamite job. Just don't let him come to your room for a chat.


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©1998, Boston Herald; distributed by Creators Syndicate, Inc.