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Peter Paul & Hillary: Will it be a case of the little guy taking the fall?

By Paul M. Weyrich
web posted February 10, 2003

Larry Klayman is one conservative who probably should employ a food taster. He bills his organization, Judicial Watch, as the only real law enforcement agency in the USA.

His fellow conservatives cheered as Klayman filed suit after suit challenging the actions of the Clinton Administration. The cheers turned to jeers when Klayman went after Vice President Dick Cheney and the Bush Administration over their policies of secrecy. Klayman also angered conservatives by going after the fundraising practices of some in the GOP leadership in the House. Klayman says he is not running a partisan organization and when he sees wrongdoing on the right, he fights it as vigorously as he fights wrongdoing on the left. The liberals also hate him with a passion because some of his suits have found favor with federal judges. Cases against the Clinton Administration are ongoing.

Klayman is now pushing for action against Bill and Hillary Clinton over a fundraiser which a Hollywood figure named Peter Paul put on for Hillary in her run for the U.S. Senate from New York. I have considerable interest in this case because I know Peter Paul. I met him through the children of Clifford Heinz, a former Director of the Free Congress Foundation. Paul subsequently was in touch with me on a number of occasions. He seemed to indicate he wanted to help conservatives, but later he got close to the Clintons.

Mrs. Clinton needed lots of money to run for the Senate in New York. She and the president turned to Paul to help with a major fundraiser. He ended up putting over $2 million into a "Hollywood Tribute to Bill Clinton" on August 12, 2000. The problem is that Hillary never reported this contribution to the Federal Election Commission.

That is a federal crime.

According to Klayman, this payment of $2 million was part of a $17 million offer to Bill Clinton to work with Peter Paul's companies after Clinton left office. Paul has disclosed this, revealing that Hillary Clinton lied to the media when she said she had taken no contributions from Paul and would not do so.

That would be significant because the only commandment left with the liberal media is "thou shalt not lie to the liberal media."

Klayman also contends that then-Democratic National Chairman Ed Rendell (who is now Governor of Pennsylvania) offered Paul, who is a convicted felon three times over, a presidential pardon in return for further contributions.

Klayman says that Peter Paul has proof that the Clintons "knowingly and illegally" permitted a foreign national to attend that Hollywood Tribute in exchange for a $27,000 contribution. Contributions from foreign nationals to political campaigns are illegal. Klayman says that that foreign national later attended an important state dinner.

In fact, Paul insists that Clinton campaign finance director David Rosen virtually demanded that Paul make another campaign contribution to a pro-abortion group in Illinois for $55,000. That money made it into Hillary's campaign war chest as well. The charges against Paul, according to Klayman, "inherently implicate Hillary and Bill."

Peter Paul has also been indicted in a stock fraud case. There is evidence that the Clintons, instead of granting the expected pardon, got the Justice Department on his case, lest he talk about them. That almost worked, until Paul started talking about the campaign issues.

The problem is that, thus far, Attorney General John Ashcroft has not agreed to pursue the Clintons in this case. Once again the little guy gets put away while the big time operators get let off the hook.

The Washington Post has reported that the two major political parties have signed off on a deal under which neither will pursue public corruption cases against the other. I would be shocked if Ashcroft has signed off on such a deal, but the failure to pursue the Clintons while Pete Paul takes the fall is troubling.

Klayman asked leaders of the conservative movement to contact Ashcroft, asking him to move on this case. But in case he doesn't, Judicial Watch has filed lawsuits in California and Washington to force the issue.

The junior Senator from New York, the ex-President of the United States, the Governor of Pennsylvania. These are all very powerful political figures in this country. Since the Justice Department lawyers have interviewed Mr. Paul four times and have told him his allegations about the Clintons have "checked out," the question now is whether these important figures will be treated as anyone else would be under the law or whether they will be passed over just because of who they are. I guarantee that if you or I had run a crooked campaign, and we were found out, we would be hounded until we were in federal prison. If Mr. Paul's allegations are true (and I believe they are because he has so many witnesses and so much documentation including hand-written notes from then-President Clinton) then how can this corruption be ignored?

I know President Bush has instructed his cabinet not to look back but to look forward. There were scandals in almost every agency and Bush, who came into office under unusual circumstances that divided the nation, did not want to begin his administration with dozens of investigations. All well and good. But this level of corruption must be dealt with or else we will have ceased to be a nation of laws and become a nation of men.

Paul M. Weyrich is Chairman and CEO of the Free Congress Foundation.

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