Mail online news reported that Monica Lewisnky recounted the moment that the sitting president encouraged her to lie under oath on the final episode of the A&E docuseries The Clinton Affair.
It marked the first time that Lewinsky has actually stated that Bill Clinton advised her to deny their affair if called to testify in the Paula Jones case, pointing out that she could avoid being deposed if she simply denied the charge in an affidavit.
Then, in a shockingly bold move, Clinton called for Lewinsky a few days later and the pair enjoyed an intimate, and private, Christmas party in the White House.
Unbeknownst to Lewinsky that was the end of the pair’s relationship, with Clinton quickly bailing on his 24-year-old paramour who was left to do battle with the special prosecutor, the FBI and the American public on her own while he fell back on a multi-million dollar legal fund raised by supporters.
It became too much for Lewinsky at one point she said, and she seriously considered taking her own life.
‘Bill called at 2.30 in the morning and there were two pieces of bad news which he was passing along,’ recalled Lewinsky.
‘One was that Betty Currie’s brother had been killed in a car accident and I had grown very close to Betty, I mean, our relationship was complicated, but I cared very much for her she had had another relative who had passed away recently so this was distressing news to me.’
Things then got worse for Lewinsky with the second bit of news, which hit much closer to home.
‘And then, he really dropped the bombshell that he had seen the witness list for the Paula Jones case and I was on it,’ revealed Lewinsky.
‘The information about Betty spun me one way and the information about the witness list spun me completely the other way. He told me that it broke his heart and that he’d thought that I probably wouldn’t get called as a witness.’
She continued: ‘I was petrified. I was frantic about my family, and this becoming public. Thankfully, Bill helped me lock myself back from that and he said I could probably sign an affidavit to get out of it, and he didn’t even know if a 100 percent I would be subpoenaed.’
Lewinsky then pointed out that Clinton never said: ‘Now, listen you’re gonna have to lie here.’
She followed that up though by stating he also never said: ‘Listen, honey, this is gonna be really awful we’re gonna have to tell the truth.’
Lewinsky was subpoenaed just a few days later, so she decided to speak with Clinton’s close friend and attorney Vernon Jordan.
Up until this point, the docuseries had been remarkably detailed in the chain of events leading up to the impeachment, but here there are some obvious questions that are not even asked, let alone answered.
Lewinsky claims that she called up Jordan on her own and managed to secure a meeting with him in his office.
And from there she claims he introduced her to her attorney.
There is no examination of how a 24-year-old working at the Pentagon managed to quickly book a face-to-face with one of the most powerful litigators in the world at the time.
‘I didn’t know whom to contact and Vernon mentioned a lawyer Frank Carter, and took me to meet him,’ said Lewinsky.
‘Frank Carter explained to me, if I’d signed an affidavit denying having had an intimate relationship with the president it might mean I wouldn’t have to be deposed in the Paula Jones case.
‘I did feel uncomfortable about it but I felt it was the right thing to do, ironically, right? So, the right thing to do, to break the law.’
Soon after she did this she was rewarded with a call to meet Clinton at the White House.
‘This is the first time I met Buddy, the dog and we kind of all played around with Buddy in the office and then we went into the back study and we had a Christmas kiss,’ said Lewinsky.
‘Over the summer he had gone to Martha’s Vineyard and he brought back a bunch of different things. He had this big canvas bag from the Black Dog. This marble bear, sunglasses.
‘It was the most presents he’d given me at one time. He knew the subpoena was gonna ask to produce certain items and yet he was giving me more gifts. He clearly still trusted me.’
She handed those gifts, and all others, to Clinton’s secretary for safekeeping and to avoid possible seizure.
Then she was left to fend for herself, a situation that quickly became dire.
This comes after the premiere of the series on Sunday, when Lewinsky’s parents spoke about their daughter’s affair for the first time.
Dr Bernard Lewinsky and his ex-wife Marcia said on the second episode of the The Clinton Affair that they were thrilled when their daughter got an internship at the White House.
‘I’m an immigrant from El Salvador and it was awesome and unbelievable that she would be working at the White House,’ said her father, the son of German Jews who fled to Central America during World War II.
That internship soon spiraled out of control when Lewinsky was discovered to be having an affair with the president, and the FBI forced her to help in the investigation into Clinton.
Lewinsky reveals they did this by threatening to prosecute her mother, breaking down in tears as she recalls how Kenneth Starr’s team and federal agents said both women were facing 27 years in prison for lying about the affair.
I kept asking could I call my mom, they kept saying no,’ recalled Lewinsky of the 12-hour interrogation inside a hotel room at the Ritz-Carlton.
‘You’re 24, you don’t need to call your mommy, you need to make a decision about what to do.’
Lewinsky was unflappable at that point however, and told the men: ‘Well you should learn I am leaning towards not cooperating.’
That is when the men made the decision to threaten not only her, but also her family.
‘And then he said, “Well, you should know, we’re also thinking about prosecuting your mom for the things you said she did on the tape,”‘ said Lewinsky, breaking down in tears.
Lewinsky then informed the men that she had to call someone, either her mother or a lawyer, before she would make this decision to wear a wire and have her calls tapped by the FBI.
The men eventually gave in to Lewinsky’s demands, and she said she went to a pay phone and called her mother in the local mall.
Lewinsky said her mother attempted to get her to calm down and breathe, before finally coming to realize the situation her daughter was in at the time.
‘FBI … have me … I’m in a hotel,’ recalled Lewinsky of her words to her mother.
Monica’s mother recalled her daughter’s earlier days in the second episode, while sharing some photos of the girl’s childhood.
‘Monica was a beautiful and very, very smart little girl,’ said her mother Marcia.
‘But stubborn. Really stubborn.
Dr Lewinsky added: ‘She was very gregarious, friendly, you know when she was in the room.’
And he said of the moment he learned about her internship: ‘I was so proud of her and she was so happy about it.’
Lewinsky also detailed the events that led to her decision to confide in Linda Tripp, the woman who would eventually alert the special prosecutor to the fact that Clinton was having an affair with a former intern.
It all started when members of Clinton’s staff decided to move Lewinsky out of her post working for Legislative Affairs at The White House and transfer her to the Pentagon amid growing concerns over how close she had become with the president.
Lewinsky suggested that this was all done with the knowledge of her paramour, who she describes as ‘crestfallen.’
The two had been seeing one another daily and enjoying weekly trysts prior to that Lewinsky had revealed, but the move to a new job and building changed all that in an instant.
Lewinsky would instead be forced to wait until the middle of the night for Clinton to call, but she said that he had promised to move her back to a White House position after the election.
At that point the pair had been carrying on their affair for five months, and a number of staff members had begun to take notice of how often Lewinsky was around the president and Oval Office.
It was an optics problem however said staffers, with no one explicitly stating that they believed the intern was having an affair with the president.
The job shift also came while Clinton was in the middle of his reelection campaign, meaning that he was not in touch with Lewinsky for days or even weeks at a time.
‘I had this nagging insecurity that maybe he just did all these things these last six months cause he wanted to keep me quiet during the election,’ explained Lewinsky.
‘How stupid am I that I believed this, that I bought this. I felt so deflated and so desperate. And those were the conditions along with some other things that led to me confiding in Linda Tripp.’
Lewinsky described her mindset at the time by saying she ‘had naively invested in his promise,’ but that was shattered when the election came and went without the offer of a White House job.
It was too much for Lewinsky, who says that after a few hours she began to think about commiting suicide.
Twenty years later, it still causes her to break down in tears.
‘The ground completely crumbled in that moment. I felt so much guilt. And I felt terrified,’ she revealed in the interview.
An FBI agent involved in the case acknowledged this, saying that Lewinsky was ‘alternating between being hysterical, being angry, being abusive.’
‘They imagined that I would have flipped really easily. They had no plan in place for what would happen if i said no,’ said Lewinsky.
That then gave way to thoughts of ending her own life.
‘There was a point for me somewhere within these first several hours where I would be hysterically crying and then I would just shut down,’ she recalled.
‘And in the shut down period I just remember looking out the window and thinking the only way to fix this is to kill myself.’
Lewinsky, who up until that point had managed to hold back her tears, then burst out sobbing.
‘I just felt terrible … and I was scared … and I was mortified,’ she said while trying to regain her composure.
This all played out at the Ritz Carlton in January 1998, with the Office of the Independent Counsel getting Linda Tripp to set up a meeting with Lewinsky.
She was then taken to a room and held by prosecutors until that night.
Lewinsky admitted that the thing that made this so difficult for her was the fact that she was still in love with Clinton and she stood her ground, until they threatened her mother.