Notable Quotables - 04/20/1998

 Peeping Tom's Witch Hunt  


 "Thumbs down for him [Starr]. It really makes his job a lot more difficult. What is he gonna do? Subpoena Judge Wright and charge her with obstruction of justice because she's gotten in his way? I think he should be winding down the investigation, putting his cards on the table. If he doesn't come forward very soon with credible evidence of lawbreaking, he will go down in history as the Peeping Tom prosecutor."
- Newsweek Senior Editor Jonathan Alter on Kenneth Starr, April 1 The News with Brian Williams on MSNBC.

"We don't live in Salem and I think the country is sick of the witch hunt. The Paula Jones case was the gateway to Miss Lewinsky. Now that the Jones case has been thrown out, I think it's going to be very difficult to go after a young woman and try to force her to answer questions about intimate matters. We do recognize in this country rights of privacy. And the notion that Ken Starr would indict this woman for a possible consensual relationship, if it existed, is a public relations disaster and I think a legal disaster also in the terms of how this country operates and what we stand for."
- Newsweek's Eleanor Clift on the McLaughlin Group, April 4.


Right-Wingers Foiled by Psychic

"On another front, there could be trouble for the Ken Starr Whitewater investigation. Reports continue to surface that this key witness for the prosecution, David Hale, may have been secretly bankrolled by political activists widely regarded as political opponents, people that Clinton supporters call Republican haters from the far right."
- Dan Rather, April 2 CBS Evening News.

CNN reporter Pierre Thomas: "The new allegations threaten to taint Hale's testimony. An Arkansas woman alleges Parker Dozhier, a friend of Hale, funneled money to Hale from the American Spectator magazine, a conservative publication. In an interview with CNN, Caryn Mann, Dozhier's ex-girlfriend says Hale was part of a conspiracy to get Mr. Clinton."
Caryn Mann: "I believe that people need to know the truth of what went on there. The money was earmarked for David."
- CNN's The World Today, April 9.

Reality Check:
"The only eyewitness against Hale is a young man with a police record. His accusations were repeated, however, by his mother [Caryn Mann] who once worked in Arkansas as a psychic and fortune-teller..."
- Fox News Channel's David Shuster, April 10 Fox Report.


Unprecedented Clinton-Bashing

"Has anybody in the history of America, any President certainly, had his character so trashed, so publicly, for so long? I think the answer is no and I think Mr. Clinton is probably personally damaged by that and I think, if you were a young state representative, 28 years old, you're sitting with your wife and kids thinking: do I want to run for President someday? What are you going to say? You're going to say good grief no, look what they do to them."
- CNN's Bruce Morton ruminating about the Jones case dismissal, April 1 The World Today.

"My whole line is, how the Hell can we drive these guys out of office for what 50 million men do a year, which is basically lie and cover it up?"
- A " White House correspondent who has covered the President for years," quoted in the April 5 New York Times.


Labeling Discrepancies

"The conservative Republican also does not try to downplay the fact that she is Sonny Bono's widow....But it's emotional appeals like this one included in a TV campaign ad that disturb Bono's chief Democratic opponent."
- Lisa Salters on election between Mary Bono and Ralph Waite to replace Sonny Bono, April 7 Good Morning America on ABC.

"Tavis Smiley is a commentator for Black Entertainment Television and was with Clinton during the first week of his [Africa] trip. And Terry Jeffrey is editor of the conservative Human Events weekly."
- Katie Couric, March 31 Today. Smiley is the author of Hard Left: Straight Talk About the Wrongs of the Right.


Outrageous! The More Money You Have, the More You Can Invest

"The millions of American investors who climbed aboard the Starship Dow before its takeoff in the 1990s have watched their net worth soar to dizzying heights. But many more have missed the ride. While Americans are piling into the market in record numbers, the most recent data suggest that six of every 10 households still do not own stocks - and thus have reaped no direct benefit from the current boom in share prices. That troubles many analysts, who warn that the bull market on Wall Street is aggravating other disturbing economic trends and pushing disparities in wealth and income to proportions not seen since the Gilded Age."
- Opening of front page April 7 Washington Post story by Clay Chandler headlined: "Income Gap Grows Wider as Millions Miss Out on Stock Market Boom."

Starr's Rapidly Rising Budget

"Federal auditors report special prosecutor Ken Starr's investigation of the Clintons has now cost at least $29 million and still counting."
- Dan Rather, March 31 CBS Evening News.


"The judge's decision will also have an impact on Independent Counsel Ken Starr's investigation. In nearly four years, Starr has spent about $35 million. Now that the Jones suit has been thrown out, it will be harder for Starr to justify a further prolonged investigation."
- Bill Plante on CBS's This Morning, April 2.


"Let's talk about that Starr investigation. Everybody has been watching television since this came out. People in the country, many of them are saying enough already, it's been $35 to $40 million being spent. What do you think this will do to Starr's investigation?"
- This Morning co-host Mark McEwen to former White House counsel Jack Quinn, minutes later.

So a Few Thousand People Lose Their Jobs...

"That's the trump card you've been playing all these days, saying we could go out of business. You went into the negotiations with the state attorneys general because you said all these lawsuits could drive you into bankruptcy. Let me ask you, why would that be such a bad idea if a few of you guys did go out of business?"

"Let me make the question more specific to you. Would it be bad for Philip Morris if RJR Reynolds went out of business.... Wouldn't your market share just go up?"

"If you go out of business somebody else just takes over and the industry continues. What's the premise of the threat?"
- CBS News correspondent Jim Stewart to Steven Parrish, Senior VP of Philip Morris, April 12 Face the Nation.


Okay, Not "Pure," But 99 Percent

"Why are you still so concerned about the mainstream media? I mean, surely what's been going on over the last few months, certainly with all the chasing of Bill Clinton must convince you that it is not purely a liberal media."
- Ted Koppel to Newt Gingrich, April 2 Nightline.


Tax Cuts "Cost" Who?

"Roughly half of married couples in the U.S. pay higher taxes simply because they are married...getting rid of it now could cost the country an estimated 29 billion dollars in revenue."
- CNN's Jennifer Auther on The World Today, April 12.

Good Riddance, Daisy Dogpatch

"She's obviously a footnote to history now. But she also, when there's summary judgment, that's another way of saying 'You're a nuisance.' That's what summary judgment means, that it's a nuisance lawsuit, a frivolous lawsuit. She's been a professional litigant for the last five years, so now she'll have to get on and get a life. She has shown an interest in acting. Doubtful that the Royal Shakespeare Company will be seeking her services, but she might get a guest spot or something like that on [the redneck sitcom of Jeff] Foxworthy. That's about what her future holds."
- Newsweek's "conventional wisdom" creator Jonathan Alter on MSNBC's The News with Brian Williams, April 1.

"Mandy who do you think is now going to carry the water, briefly, for the anti-Clinton clique in the country or the anti-Clinton people in the country?"
- ABC World News Tonight anchor Peter Jennings to Democratic consultant Mandy Grunwald, April 1.


Unlike My Anita Hill Story...

Nina Totenberg, NPR: "There is nothing wrong with much of what this coverage has been, but there has been a lot of stuff that has been, I think, really over the edge and it has not been in the National Enquirer. It has been in news organizations that you and I respect. And just as it is true, for example, that communists were trying to infiltrate the United States government in the 1950s, and that was a legitimate story, it doesn't mean that we have to buy in to being used with McCarthyistic tactics."

Evan Thomas, Newsweek: "That's a ridiculous comparison. If you look at the press coverage of McCarthy in the early 1950s and compare it to this, there is no comparison. The press was horribly used in the 1950s by McCarthy."
- Exchange from Inside Washington, April 4.


Monicagate Sensationalism: Ronald Reagan's Fault

"I think it's going to get a lot worse, certainly it's going to get a lot worse before it gets better. I think it really goes back to the Reagan administration and the deregulation of television. There was a time when television, in order to hold on to licenses for its stations would really say we have got to perform a public service. That was when we had a Tiffany network. Today it doesn't matter anymore. You just make your money where you make your money and to hell with public service. So I think what we see now is not the end of a trend, but somewhere in the middle of a trend."
- CBS News and CNN veteran Daniel Schorr, who now opines for NPR, April 7 Larry King Live on CNN.


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