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Fearless Philosophy For Free Minds: Did Hillary Clinton Attempt to Deny Richard Nixon Legal Counsel?

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Did Hillary Clinton Attempt to Deny Richard Nixon Legal Counsel?

According to Hillary Clinton’s former boss Jerry Zeifman, she did that and more. Zeifman, who was the Judiciary Chief of Staff during the Watergate scandal, supervised a 27 year-old Hillary Rodham who was on the House Judiciary Committee. Apparently, Hillary believed that she had discovered a legal loophole which would deny President Richard Nixon his Sixth Amendment right to legal counsel. After Hillary presented this argument to Zeifman, he promptly squashed the argument by pointing out that there was legal precedent for legal counsel in impeachment cases. Zeifman showed Hillary the precedent existed after Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas was allowed to have legal counsel in his attempted impeachment in 1970. Additionally, even the top Democrats including the House Majority Leader Tip O’Neill believed that the president had the right to an attorney.

Despite her knowledge to the contrary and against Zeifman’s expressed orders to pursue Hillary’s legal theory, Hillary prepared a legal brief which fraudulently stated that there was no legal precedent and stole secured public documents* regarding the Douglas impeachment case (which were not yet available to the public) which would disprove her argument. Fortunately for Hillary, Richard Nixon resigned before she had an opportunity to file the brief. Had Hillary had the chance to present the brief before a judge, Zeifman believed that Hillary would likely have been disbarred because her arguments were ridiculous and her methods were unethical.

Why did Hillary and others try to deny the president legal counsel? According to Zeifman, if Nixon’s attorney could cross-examine E. Howard Hunt (the man who masterminded the Watergate break-in), he would possibly bring to light unethical and illegal activities which occurred during John F. Kennedy’s administration (such as an assassination attempt on Fidel Castro allegedly supported by JFK). Hillary’s former law professor, Burke Marshall (who recommended Hillary to Zeifman) was working with Zeifman on the impeachment case. Marshall previously served as Sen. Ted Kennedy’s attorney in the infamous Chappaquiddick case.

Besides these possible conflicts of interest, the goal of the House Judiciary Committee was to impeach Richard Nixon. What might have happened if Nixon refused to resign and if E. Howard Hunt had revealed crimes committed by the Kennedy Administration? Such revelations might have undermined the case against Nixon by deflecting attention away from his crimes. Who knows who else Hunt may have implicated in various positions in the government in both political parties?

On the other hand, if Hillary and Marshall had succeeded with their scheme, Zeifman believes that the House Judiciary Committee would have lost the ability to be part of the process of drafting the articles of impeachment or cross-examine witnesses. In other words denying Nixon legal counsel would have backfired and Nixon might have possibly escaped impeachment.

Following Nixon’s resignation, Zeifman fired Hillary from the staff and refused to write her any letters of recommendation (Hillary Rodham is one of only three people he refused to write a letter of recommendation for in his entire career).

The reason? According to Zeifman:

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.

My question is why hasn’t the MSM picked up on this story? This story has everything: Watergate, Chappaquiddick, John F. Kennedy, Hillary stealing public documents, a legal theory that a person does not have the right to legal counsel in an impeachment trial, and general corruption at all levels of the federal government! Maybe Jerry Zeifman is a cracked pot attempting to swift boat** Hillary’s campaign? Maybe he isn’t who he says he is? Zeifman claims to be a life-long Democrat but he has written articles critical of Bill Clinton and Nancy Pelosi for the conservative paper News Max and voted for Bob Dole in 1996 (after voting for Bill Clinton in the previous election***).

This is not the first time Zeifman has made these charges about Hillary, however. Zeifman wrote two books on this very event: Without Honor: Crimes of Camelot and the Impeachment of Richard Nixon (1996) and Hillary’s Pursuit of Power (2006).

It’s very clear that Zeifman has an axe to grind, but is he telling the truth? Hillary Clinton has lied to us many times before (most recently about being under threat of sniper fire in Bosnia as first lady) so if it’s her word against Zeifman, I would tend to trust Zeifman.

Either way, the MSM has thus far been MIA on this story. The American people have a right to know if Mr. Zeifman’s charges are true or not. If the charges are not true, the MSM should expose Zeifman as a fraud. If these charges are true, however; maybe this would offer some insight to the character and the trustworthiness of Hillary Clinton.

* This wouldn’t be the first time we’ve heard accusations about Hillary stealing documents. Then of course there was Sandy Burger stealing classified documents when preparing to testify before the 9/11 commission. With all of the scandals involving the Clinton Administration, I would not be at all shocked if this turned out to be true.

** Swift Boat; another term that has entered the lexicon I can’t stand. Anyone who runs for political office, especially president should expect that people from his or her past will come out of the woodwork to be against him or her (right or wrong). The swift boat veterans who served with John Kerry had every right to tell their story, just as various people who knew George W. Bush when he was serving (or not serving) in the National Guard had every right to tell theirs. It’s a free country I mean damn, just damn!

*** Zeifman was interviewed by Neal Boortz earlier today. Zeifman explained that he felt he could support the Clintons because maybe, just maybe Hillary learned her lesson. Perhaps Hillary’s fraudulent behavior with hiding public documents was a “youthful indiscretion.” It took only one term of the Clinton Administration for Zeifman to conclude “perhaps not.”


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