Wednesday, June 11, 2003

Tristate delegation shuns Clinton book



By Carl Weiser
Enquirer Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON - Former first lady Hillary Clinton's book Living History won't be showing up on U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning's coffee table any time soon.

"I will not read it, I will not buy it, I will not subsidize Hillary Clinton's retirement," the Kentucky Republican said Tuesday.

"Bill and Hillary had difficulty distinguishing right from wrong and truth from fiction," the conservative said in a conference call with Kentucky media. "Obviously this is a fictional version of what happened in the White House for eight years."

Bunning said he doubted Clinton's claim that she didn't know the president was lying about his relationship with Monica Lewinsky until he told her about the affair in August 1998. "After 20 years in Arkansas? Come on, gimme a break," Bunning said.

A spokesman for Clinton had no comment.

In 1993, five years before President Clinton's impeachment, Bunning called Bill Clinton "the most corrupt, the most amoral, the most despicable person I've ever seen in the presidency."

Because Bunning was in the House in 1998 and elected that year to the Senate, he is one of only two senators - the other is Idaho Republican Mike Crapo - who voted both to impeach the president and convict him.

Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell, the No. 2 Republican in the Senate, also said he won't read Clinton's book.

Sen. George Voinovich, R-Ohio, is "actually reading something on a little different level. He's reading The Acts of the Apostles, said the senator's spokeswoman Marcie Ridgway.

The only Tristate senator planning to read the book, according to a spokesperson, is Ohio Republican Mike DeWine.

As for Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., "He's been busy the last couple weeks with the release of his own book," said his spokesman, Mark Kornblau. Bayh's book, From Father to Son: A Private Life in the Public Eye, was ranked 50,769 on Amazon.com Tuesday; Clinton's book ranked second - behind Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., doesn't have a copy of Clinton's or Bayh's book, his spokesman said.

E-mail cweiser@gns.gannett.com




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