Alexander's Column

The Clintons' rotten family tree

Mark Alexander · Feb. 23, 2001

President Bush was on the road promoting his modest tax reduction proposal and his plan to increase spending for the Department of Education by 11% – $6.2 billion. “Good education starts with high standards and the unfailing belief that every child can learn, regardless of their background or their circumstances,” said Mr. Bush. (Will someone please show us where the Constitutions says the central government can levy direct taxes for the purpose of funding government education!)

While minions from “The Party of Bill Clinton” were attempting to rally support against Mr. Bush’s tax plan, their efforts were fragmented by yet additional confirmations that their patron saint was not so holy.

Just when you thought half-brother Rockin’ Roger Clinton was the most embarrassing sibling in the Pardongate scandal, enter Ms. Rodham-Clinton’s brother, Hugh-mongous, the unsuccessful Florida candidate for U.S. Senate. Among Clinton’s pardonees not cleared by the Justice Department were snake-oil vendor Almon Glenn Braswell and drug kingpin Carlos Vignali. After being convicted of importing about 4,000 kilos of cocaine for distribution to places like, well, Harlem, Clinton got Vignali out of the pokey nine years early. It now appears that both cases were advocated by Hugh Rodham, and in at least the case of Braswell, Rodham got a “success fee” (AKA “bounty”) once the pardon had been delivered.

“Huge,” as Rodham is known to his closest friends, collected $200 large from both Braswell and Vignali. Though he now claims “there was no impropriety,” he has returned the payola.

“The American system has been bought,” complained investigator Tony Adams, who busted Vignali’s cocaine ring. “Somebody needs to do the rest of his [Vignali’s] time. Somebody… needs to do the rest of his time – and I’ll do the paperwork for it.” Hmmm…any suggestions on whom that should be?

Asked about this latest chapter of Clinton’s now epic record of corruption at his first official press conference, Mr. Bush responded: “As far as this White House is concerned, it’s time to go forward. I have to get a budget passed, to get reforms passed for education, to get the tax cut passed, to strengthen the military [rather] than worrying about decisions that my predecessor made.” Indeed, Mr. Bush is right. He and Congress should let this matter fester in the stewardship of the Justice Department and Clinton’s former media sycophants.

Memo to Mr. Bush: Congratulations on your first month in office! Regarding your rambling replies to other questions at your first press conference, learn the art of the short answer – and don’t ever, EVER, call on Helen Thomas again!

Ms. Rodham-Clinton also held a press conference: “I was very disappointed and saddened by this whole matter. It came as a surprise to me, and it was very disturbing, and I’m just very disappointed about it. … I did not know any specific information until late Monday night. I didn’t know about it, and I am very regretful that it occurred and that I didn’t know it.”

You must pay close attention to the Clintonese parlance. Remember last week when Bill Clinton said, “There’s not a single, solitary shred of evidence that I did anything wrong,” rather than forthrightly declaring he did nothing wrong? You will note Ms. Rodham-Clinton’s words: “I did not know any specific information.” The key word here is “specific.”

In other cocaine dealer news, Michael Isikoff and Daniel Klaidman report in Newsweek that the reason Bill Clinton did not consult the Justice Department on the pardon of Roger Clinton was that the Roger was already under investigation for a scheme in which Bill conspired to get him a consulting contract for $35,000 – a month. The party being strong-armed to pay the fee to Roger noted, “That’s a pretty big consulting fee for someone who plays in a rock band.”

Speaking of young Roger, he was arrested and jailed for drunk driving and disturbing the peace in Hermosa Beach, CA, last Saturday night.

It has been a big week for the outlaw in-laws.

The Leftmedia continue to feign, in the words of that famous jar-head, Gomer Pyle, “Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!” In their now countless editorial condemnations of the Clintons, the New York Times added: “The disclosure that Bill Clinton’s brother-in-law received large fees from two beneficiaries of Mr. Clinton’s last-minute pardons and commutations can only deepen the public revulsion over the former president’s decisions. It adds to the disturbing impression that Mr. Clinton’s actions may have been influenced by friendships, politics, and financial contributions…. The matter must be thoroughly investigated by Congress and the Justice Department.”

Perennial Leftist darling, Richard Cohen, penned an open letter to Bill Clinton on the pardon mess: “It’s a pie in the face of anyone who ever defended you. You may look bad, Bill, but we look just plain stupid.” And Al Hunt did the same: “Congressional Democrats have a message for Clinton: Drop dead for at least the next six months. … The frustration and anger over Mr. Clinton’s behavior is intense.”

Well – yup!

Even that dandy boy Barney Frank, who called Clinton’s impeachment an “extraordinary triumph of ideology,” now says Clinton’s actions are “a real betrayal…of all who had been strongly supportive of him.”

More evidence why their party mascot is a jackass!

And speaking of party mascots, Albert Arnold Gore has been remarkably quiet, so we can only assume he stands by his famous words after Congress impeached his mentor: “Bill Clinton is one of our greatest presidents.” Thanks for that eternal insight, Al!

Memo to all you whining Lefties: This pardon mess is nothing more than a continuation of “the most ethical administration’s” discreditable conduct in office for the last eight years. Enough already with the effete “shock and surprise” routine.