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April 2, 2008
Shocking Revelations about Hillary Clinton's Watergate Committee Job
According to this Daniel Calabrese article, Hillary Clinton was fired from her job as a staff attorney for the House Judiciary Committee during the Watergate investigations for, among other things, lying:
Jerry Zeifman, a lifelong Democrat, supervised the work of 27-year-old Hillary Rodham on the committee. Hillary got a job working on the investigation at the behest of her former law professor, Burke Marshall, who was also Sen. Ted Kennedy’s chief counsel in the Chappaquiddick affair.
When the investigation was over, Zeifman fired Hillary from the committee staff and refused to give her a letter of recommendation – one of only three people who earned that dubious distinction in Zeifman’s 17-year career.
“Because she was a liar,” Zeifman said in an interview last week. “She was an unethical, dishonest lawyer. She conspired to violate the Constitution, the rules of the House, the rules of the committee and the rules of confidentiality.”
The fact that this hasn't come out prior to this election cycle (Patterico wrote about it here), is perhaps the most shocking revelation of all. One has to be convinced that if it were a Republican who had a past like this, the politician's career would never have gotten off the ground. Such a revelation - so easily discovered by simply asking her boss on the Committee - would have been all over the media if a Republican had been fired for "lying" amd violating "the Constitution, the rules of the House, the rules of the committee, and the rules of confidentiality." Indeed it does. Read the whole shocking story and then wonder anew at either the unbelievable laziness of the press or their rank bias - the only two possible explanations for why this is just coming out now.
Hillary Clinton has been a public figure for 20 years or more. She has run for office twice in New York. I am absolutely flabbergasted that the press was so incurious as to not dig this information out earlier or if it has been in the public domain, why it hasn't been given a huge amount of play by the news nets and major media. Is lying, violating ethics and the Constitution in a candidate's past not important to the voter when they make their decision on who to support for president?
Regardless, among Clinton's transgressions while on staff at the House Judiciary Committee were her apparent lying about not seeking to change House rules by assuring her boss she had no intention of doing so and then later being discovered that she was already advocating radical changes including a recommendation to deny President Nixon the right to counsel. Ziefman wrote on his own website:
In one written legal memorandum, she advocated denying President Nixon representation by counsel. In so doing she simply ignored the fact that in the committee’s then most recent prior impeachment proceeding, the committee had afforded the right to counsel to Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas. I had also informed Hillary that the Douglas impeachment files were available for public inspection in the committee offices. She later removed the Douglas files without my permission and carried them to the offices of the impeachment inquiry staff — where they were no longer accessible to the public.
As Ed Morrissey points out:
If all she did was to propose that as a tactic, that would not make it terribly concerning — but she did much more than just spitball ideas. When informed that public evidence showed a precedent for the right to counsel, she absconded with the files to eliminate the evidence.
Does that remind anyone of later incidents in the Clinton narrative, such as the billing records for the Rose Law offices and the 900+ raw FBI files on political opponents of the Clintons?
Hillary’s advocates could accuse Zeifman of conjuring up these stories in order to draw attention to himself in the middle of a presidential campaign. However, Calabrese reports that Zeifman kept diaries during this period, urged on by friends mindful of the historical nature of the Watergate investigation. No one would have known at the time that this 27-year-old barracuda would have any sort of national significance — which makes Zeifman’s testimony all the more compelling.