There’s been a massive effort to discredit Kathleen Willey – an effort that could only be orchestrated by friends of the White House.
Yet, the story by the former Clinton booster, Democratic fund-raiser and White House volunteer is, if anything, stronger today than it was last week when she appeared on “60 Minutes” and accused the president of accosting her outside the Oval Office.
The White House wasted no time in producing letters from Willey – letters designed to show that she tried to maintain a friendly relationship with Clinton after the incident. Funny, isn’t it, that Clinton has been in no hurry to produce letters from Monica Lewinsky or an explanation as to the location of the 900 FBI files or hundreds of other documents requested, even subpoenaed by investigators? But there are the Willey letters within 24 hours of the airing of “60 Minutes.”
But if the letters are the best evidence the White House has to discredit Willey’s story, then her story is only strengthened. Is it any wonder Willey would try to repair the damage done to her relationship with the president by rejecting his sexual advances? Remember, this is a woman who was counting on Clinton to help her out of a big jam. Undoubtedly, she was scared that she had blown her chance for a good job at the White House.
Then there are the reports from a tabloid newspaper, which claims Willey sought $300,000 for her story. So what. She was nearly $300,000 in debt. What would be wrong with capitalizing on her victimization at the hands of the president of the United States if she could?
Then there’s the book deal her attorney discussed with Michael Viner of New Millennium Entertainment, a California publisher noted for such high-brow fare such as a book by Faye Resnick, Nicole Simpson Brown’s friend.
What’s interesting about this one is that Viner was interested in publishing Willey’s book before the “60 Minutes” program but not afterward. Figure this one out. Before the airing of that program, Willey was an obscure figure in the Paula Jones case. Afterward, she was one of the most famous women in America. Yet, Viner’s publishing instincts told him to reject the book after he saw the show.
Is it possible that Viner’s interest in a book deal with Willey amounted to little more than hush money from a Democratic Party activist? Before going into the publishing business, Viner was an aide to Robert F. Kennedy. Here’s the incredible tale he tells about his interest in publishing her book for a $100,000 advance: He said he talked with her attorney because he thought a book that gave a woman’s perspective of Washington could be successful if she was “a terrific writer and had good recall.”
Let’s get real. There are thousands of women in Washington who would be better candidates to write such a book. Why Kathleen Willey? Her only brush with fame came in that fateful meeting with Bill Clinton – and, incredibly, Viner wasn’t interested in that incident.
This is a story that tells you as much about the politically correct U.S. publishing scene as it does about the profit potential of criticizing Clinton. When Kathleen Willey was considering writing a book about being a “fan” of Bill Clinton, there was interest in a huge book deal. When she went public with a story of being sexually assaulted by him, the interest quickly dried up. Does that make sense? Viner wasn’t interested in the only real story Willey could tell.
And there’s a pattern here. Look at the Arkansas state troopers. Roger Perry and Larry Patterson, the two former Clinton bodyguards, stand accused of trying to profiteer from their relationship with Clinton and by telling tales of sexual recklessness and adultery. Yet, not one publisher was interested in their story – not one. Had they been interested in a comfortable existence, like their friend and colleague Buddy Young, now a top official at the Federal Emergency Management Administration, they would have taken the high-paying federal jobs offered them by Bill Clinton for their silence. Instead, they took the high road. They told the truth.
There is no one – not one person in the entire United States – who has been offered a big book contract for telling what he or she knows about Bill Clinton – at least not if it is critical. Had Kathleen Willey been interested only in making money from her story, she would have been better off giving Viner what he apparently wanted – another work of fluff on the hero-in-chief. She didn’t.
No, Kathleen Willey stands taller than ever. She had nothing to gain from telling her story on “60 Minutes” – nothing, that is, except the knowledge that she had told the truth.