Jones Lawyers: Clinton's Testimony Not Credible
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AllPolitics, March 18) -- Lawyers for Paula Jones have filed additional papers with the judge accusing President Bill Clinton of trying to cover up what they call a pattern of rewarding women who grant him sexual favors and punishing those who say no.
In court papers filed in Little Rock late Tuesday, Jones lawyers claimed Clinton worked "feverishly" to suppress evidence of his behavior toward women. The president tried to silence Monica Lewinsky and Kathleen Willey by offering the women paid jobs or appointments, according to the papers.
Because of those alleged efforts, the Jones lawyers say Clinton's sworn testimony in the case is worthless because it can not be believed. They argue the judge should therefore discount the president's deposition when deciding whether the case should proceed.
"Mr. Clinton's testimony, and the testimony of his agents, must be given little or no weight in deciding the motion before the court in light of a prolonged attempt to suppress, alter or distort evidence relating to the matters at issue in this case," the lawyers said.
Last Friday, Jones' attorneys responded to the president's motion to throw out the lawsuit with more than 700 pages of documents.
This Friday, Clinton lawyer Bob Bennett will respond to the Jones filing with his own documents.
John Whitehead, one of Jones' attorneys and the head of the conservative Rutherford Institute, said Jones' case is not solely about sexual harassment but a violation of Jones' civil rights. "The key here is that this is not just a sexual harassment case; it never has been," Whitehead said. "It's been mis-characterized that way. What we're arguing is that it's a civil rights case where you have to show intentional discrimination."
Whitehead said if what Jones and Willey, a former White House aide, allege about encounters with Clinton are proved to be true, the incidents are violations of their civil rights.
"We're arguing more than sexual harassment," Whitehead said. "In some cases we're arguing sexual assault. If what Willey says is true, that's assault; if Paula Jones is true, that is sexual assault. That's a civil rights defense. It's gender-based discrimination, and it's a violation of the civil rights of these women. In our case we're dealing with Paula Jones. We think she was discriminated against on the basis of her sex."
Whitehead said Willey's allegations that the president made unwanted sexual advances toward her were included in the Jones case because her story is "one instance where we believe, because of her non-consent, as we allege, that she was given some jobs -- those were attempts and maybe part of the campaign to silence or maybe suppress evidence."
Jones alleges the president, while governor of Arkansas, made sexual advances toward her in a Little Rock hotel room, advances she said she rejected. The president has vehemently denied the allegations.
The case is scheduled to go to trial May 27.