Fox News will host discredited smear merchant Kathleen Willey tonight to attack Hillary Clinton. Willey is not credible -- she has repeatedly been caught contradicting her own sworn testimony and has pushed absurd conspiracies that the Clintons killed her husband and former White House aide Vince Foster.
The website for Fox's The Kelly File currently features the following tease for tonight's episode: "She claimed Bill Clinton sexually harassed her, but former aide Kathleen Willey now says Hillary is the bigger danger to women! Don't miss this explosive interview." Megyn Kelly's interview will likely cover the same ground as an appearance Willey made on WND reporter Aaron Klein's radio program, during which she claimed that "Hillary Clinton is the war on women."
Willey's claims about Bill Clinton's supposed harassment have been thoroughly discredited. In 1998, Willey alleged on CBS' 60 Minutes that President Clinton fondled her against her will in 1993 during a private White House meeting in which she asked for a paid position in the administration (she was working as a volunteer at the time). Clinton denied making any sexual advance toward Willey, both at the time and in his memoir. The allegations were explored during discovery of Jones v. Clinton, the lawsuit in which Paula Jones claimed that Clinton sexually harassed her, and reviewed by Independent Counsel Robert Ray.
Ray's report found that "Willey's Jones deposition testimony differed from her grand jury testimony on material aspects of the alleged incident," noting that Willey "said at her deposition ... that [Clinton] did not fondle her." Ray also pointed out that -- despite Willey's subsequent claims that she had been intimidated near her home shortly before giving her Jones deposition in 1998 -- in her Jones deposition, she "testified no one had tried to discourage her from testifying."
Ray also found that Willey contradicted herself on whether she had told others about the alleged incident; that Willey had sent repeated letters to Clinton after she claims he harassed her in which she "sought help or expressed gratitude"; that a Willey friend said Willey had instructed her to falsely support her story; and that Willey gave false information to the FBI. The Independent Counsel declined to prosecute Clinton due to "insufficient evidence."
Since her initial 60 Minutes interview, Willey has offered a series of implausible and conspiratorial claims about the Clintons' alleged efforts to silence her.
Willey: The Clintons May Have Killed My Husband Just Like They Killed Vince Foster
Willey's husband, Ed Willey, committed suicide on November 29, 1993 -- the same day on which she claims Bill Clinton sexually harassed her after she asked him for a job. At the time, Edward Willey owed the IRS $400,000, had stolen $275,000 from a client, and was being threatened with disbarment. Kathleen Willey has since insinuated that her husband was actually murdered at the behest of the Clintons, and suggested a possible parallel to the death of Foster. Fringe conservatives have for years claimed that Foster was murdered in spite of numerous investigations proving that he took his own life.
In her 2007 autobiography, Target: Caught in the Crosshairs of Bill and Hillary Clinton, Willey wrote that her husband is on a list of "former Clinton associates who had died abruptly -- and conveniently for the Clintons," and claimed, "it has not escaped my notice that, less than five months after the left-handed Vince Foster drove to a wooded area in Virginia and used both hands to put a .38 caliber pistol into his mouth, so did my husband." (The claim that the gun a left-handed Foster used to take his own life was found in his right hand is a common falsehood used to promote the conspiracy -- Foster was actually right-handed.)
Willey then speculated that her husband could have been killed because he may have "illegally borrowed" money from the Clinton campaign to pay the IRS and other bills. Claiming that a medical examiner provided a "full report" in which the examiner "suggested that he [Ed Willey] held the gun with both hands but pulled the trigger with his right," Willey added: "That's exactly how Vince Foster is said to have killed himself." Willey also wrote: "Despite the unanswered questions, I reconciled in my mind, long ago, that Ed killed himself. In my heart, I don't want to think so and I still wonder, How could he possibly do that? I go back and forth. And, as I do, the possibility lingers, logical or not, that Ed was murdered."
Willey Claims The Clintons Were Behind Burglary Of Her House
In a September 2007 article, WorldNetDaily reported: "Kathleen Willey, the woman who says Bill Clinton groped her in the Oval Office, claims she was the target of an unusual house burglary over the weekend that nabbed a manuscript for her upcoming book, which promises explosive revelations that could damage Sen. Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. Willey told WND little else was taken from her rural Virginia home as she slept alone upstairs -- electronics and jewelry were left behind -- and she believes the Clintons were behind it."
Willey reportedly told WorldNetDaily that the alleged theft was "prompted by teasers of the book's contents" in the media the previous week. While she offered no evidence for her claims, Willey's allegations were heavily promoted by the conservative media, including on Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume.
Willey: The Clintons May Have Killed My Cat And Sent A Goon To Make Veiled Threats
In her grand jury testimony, Willey portrayed the disappearance of her cat and a male jogger who later asked if she had found the cat as part of an effort to keep her from testifying. Ray noted that these claims were inconsistent with her Jones testimony:
Willey also alleged that in the period immediately preceding her January 1998 Jones deposition, her cat disappeared, her tires were punctured, and a male jogger whom she did not recognize approached her at her rural home, called her by her name, and asked about her tires, cat (which he named), children (whom he named), attorney, and her attorney's children (whom he also named), saying "I hope you're getting the message" or "You're just not getting the message, are you?" Willey 3/6/98 Int. at 18; Willey 3/10/98 GJ at 123-27. At her Jones deposition, however, Willey testified no one had tried to discourage her from testifying. Willey 1/11/98 Depo. at 86-87.
Willey told the grand jury that even though she was "terrified for my safety" because of these incidents, "I did give consideration to maybe not -- maybe not being very truthful in [her Jones v. Clinton] deposition because I thought that my -- that people close to me were in jeopardy." Willey 3/10/98 GJ at 170-71. Despite the threats, Willey told the grand jury, she "decided that I had to tell the truth" at her deposition. Willey 3/10/98 GJ at 127. As noted below, see infra p. 92 and notes 50-52, there were material differences between Willey's deposition testimony and what she told the grand jury about the incident between her and President Clinton.
Willey reiterated her claims about the cat and the jogger in a 2007 interview with the New York Sun:
Once that case loomed, she found herself skulked by strange, scary people. "A man, he was pretending to be a jogger, he came up to me and just asked did I ever find my cat?" Ms. Willey said. "He mentioned my cat by name and [said], 'Yeah, that Bullseye was a really nice cat.'"
Ms. Willey said the guy was so creepy that she came to the conclusion he'd been hired to intimidate her, and he'd started by killing her cat.
Some time later she had another cat, a particularly fluffy 1-year-old, that turned up dead on her deck. Double hmm.
Eventually, Ms Willey pins all this -- and more -- on none other than Mrs. Clinton herself because (pay attention now): Ms. Willey once talked to a conservative talk show host, Melanie Morgan, who said she had run into the private eye who'd ostensibly been behind all this skullduggery. The talk show host supposedly said to the private eye, "Aren't you ashamed of what you did to Kathleen?" And the private eye supposedly replied that the only thing he was ashamed of was that "Hillary did not pay me in a timely fashion." (See? Hillary's not only evil -- she's cheap.)
In Target, Willey wrote that a year after the "jogger" supposedly confronted her, a reporter showed her a photo of Cody Shearer, a private investigator whose sister was a White House aide, and that she "looked at the picture and I thought it was Shearer." But Shearer was on the other side of the country at the time of the alleged confrontation. Willey concluded in her book: "So I do not know who the jogger was. All I know is that I was up against the Clinton machine, which had unlimited power and money. With those resources, I figured any alibi -- or any 'jogger' -- could be arranged."