February 10th, 2014
05:26 AM ET
9 years ago

Documents reveal Hillary Clinton’s private reaction to her husband's cheating scandal with Monica Lewinsky

Updated 4:10 p.m. ET, 2/10/2014

Washington (CNN) – Hillary Clinton told a close friend that Monica Lewinsky was a "narcissistic loony toon," and also discussed in detail why she decided to forgive her husband for having an affair with the White House intern, according to documents penned by Diane Blair, a close friend and longtime confidant to the former first lady.

The contents of the documents, which are part of Blair’s papers housed at the University of Arkansas, were first reported by the Washington Free Beacon, a conservative website that posted the story late on Sunday night.

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CNN has confirmed the documents are authentic and has reached out to a spokesman for Hillary Clinton, who has not responded.

Read the documents

Blair’s writings are made up of notes and diary entries based on communication the former political science professor who died in 2000 had with Mrs. Clinton.

“It was a lapse, but she says to his credit he tried to break it off, tried to pull away, tried to manage someone who was clearly a 'narcissistic loony toon'; but it was beyond control," Blair wrote about a conversation she had with Clinton on September 9, 1998, during the height of the Lewinsky scandal that led to her husband’s impeachment.

Blair went on to write that Hillary Clinton had suggested her husband had made the mistake with Lewinsky because of the personal toll the deaths of his mother, her father, and their friend Vince Foster had taken on him while "the ugly forces started making up hateful things about them, pounding on them."

The story comes as speculation heats up that the former New York senator and secretary of state is weighing a second run for the White House.

The Blair papers were not made public until 2010, well after Clinton’s unsuccessful presidential bid in 2008.

And the details come as Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a likely 2016 GOP White House contender, continues to call the Lewinsky scandal a liability for Democrats.

Some Democrats pushed back, saying the documents don't reveal anything more about Hillary Clinton's feelings about the controversy than what she wrote in her memoir, "Living History."

Clinton described herself as "dumbfounded, heartbroken and outraged" when her husband told her about his relations with Lewinsky.

"Gulping for air, I started crying and yelling at him," she wrote. "'What do you mean? What are you saying? Why did you lie to me?'"

Democrats argue the passages from her own book are more powerful because they come directly from her.

Where is Monica Lewinsky?

The Clinton-Lewisnky affair captivated the nation’s attention as the sordid details became international news. The relationship and grand jury investigation led the House to impeach Clinton on two charges in December 1998. In February 1999, the Senate acquitted him.

Just days after Clinton’s impeachment, Blair wrote that Hillary called her, and they had a lengthy conversation about impeachment.

“She sounded very up, almost jolly,” writes Blair. “Told me how she and Bill and Chelsea had been to church, to a Chinese restaurant, to a Shakespeare play, greeted everywhere with wild applause and cheers.”

She added, “This, she said, is what drives their adversaries totally nut(s), that they don't bend, do not appear to be suffering.”

According to Blair, Clinton said that “most people in this town have no pain threshold.”

Blair’s writings also show Hillary Clinton sought to downplay the relationship between her husband and Lewisnky.

“HRC insists, no matter what people say, it was gross inappropriate behavior but it was consensual (was not a power relationship) and was not sex within any real meaning… of the term,” Blair wrote.

In addition to Hillary Clinton's private thoughts on the Lewinsky matter, Blair's writing talks about Clinton's support for a single payer health care system, as well as her thoughts on foreign policy, among other subjects.

According to notes about a dinner Blair had with the first couple on February 23, 1993, Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton talked “at length about the complexities of healthcare,” with the first lady saying stating “managed competition a crock, single payer necessary; maybe add to Medicare.”

Hillary Clinton was the face of the White House’s unsuccessful 1993 push on health care reform and healthcare comes up throughout the Blair notes.

Clinton’s admission that “single payer necessary” contrasts what she has sad in the past. In a 2008 interview with the New York Times, Clinton said, “You know, I have thought about this, as you might guess, for 15 years and I never seriously considered a single-payer system.”

Blair, a political science professor from Arkansas, joined Gov. Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign as a senior researcher and worked as a senior adviser on his successful 1996 reelection bid. She became a close friend to both Clintons, but particularly the first lady.

She died in 2000 at the age of 61. At the time, The New York Times reported that Hillary Clinton eulogized Blair as “the best person that one could have as a friend.”

The documents portray Blair’s relationship with Clinton as both professional and personal. While they appeared to talk extensively about policy and politics, they also discussed books, travel and family.

The Blair documents were donated by her husband, James, in 2005. The documents were processed and completed by 2010 and contain 109 boxes of information that range from Blair’s professional materials to her correspondence with the Clintons.

If Clinton runs in 2016, what will Biden do?

James once helped Hillary Clinton make $100,000 in commodity futures trading, which drew scrutiny for its timing.

According to the Free Beacon, Hillary Clinton was a supporter of making the Blair records public in 2010.

“With this collection, [Diane Blair’s] contributions will grow and live on, enlarging our understanding of history, politics and culture,” Hillary Clinton reportedly said, according to the Free Beacon. "I hope also that some young scholar will come along and write the story of Diane.

The Washington Free Beacon reporter who first poured through the documents didn't think she'd find all that much to write about.

"I went down to Arkansas. I honestly didn't think that there would be much there, because I feel like so much of the Clintons, especially the 1990's related stuff, has been so picked over by reporters. But yeah, I went down and surprisingly there were some interesting things there," Alana Goodman told CNN's Brooke Baldwin in an interview on CNN Newsroom.

Moment of tension between Bill and Hillary Clinton

Filed under: Bill Clinton • Hillary Clinton
soundoff (955 Responses)
  1. zelskid

    Everyone is forgetting about all of Bill's other girl friends

    February 10, 2014 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  2. Tim

    She didnt want to give up surfing the power wave that was President Clinton. She might have faded into obscurity had she done so.

    February 10, 2014 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  3. JLXvsElvis

    Loooove Bill and Hillary.

    February 10, 2014 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  4. ajk68

    A Clinton describing someone else as narcissistic!
    In their book, someone is a narcissist if it isn't all about the Clintons.

    February 10, 2014 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  5. Conrad Shull

    "Looney tune"? What a potty mouth HIllary has. (I think she called her a lot worse than that.)

    February 10, 2014 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  6. Rick

    Come on people. Hillary was doing VinceFoster and everyone knew it. As for Bill he was doing anything he could get his hands on. A marriage built on the quest for power with morality set a-side. It's amusing the way the Dems trot Bill out as their spokesmen considering their lame lament about the republicans "War on Women". Here's a man alot more comfortable being around men, his only use for women is one of sexual conquest. Read any of the 10 or so books on him and they all spell this out in clear detail. Or just ask Monica, Jennifer, Paula or any bevy of beauties the State troopers of Arkansas lined up for him.

    February 10, 2014 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  7. doofus

    When you consider Monica had an affair with Hillary's husband, "narcissistic loony toon" is pretty docile. Who cares.

    February 10, 2014 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  8. John Illinois

    What a joke! It was totally political for Hillary and anyone who is not a complete fool knows it! Not to mention a lot of people believe there are "other" reasons!

    February 10, 2014 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  9. Newt Gingrich

    So who is the nut? The young groupie who was taken by the leader of the free world, or the woman who tolerated a cheating husband time after time in the name of political ambition?

    February 10, 2014 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  10. Dale

    Who care if Bill Clinton received oral sex from a intern, who cares? If Hillary Clinton doesn't care about four Americans murdered in Benghazi, why should we care about the Clinton's?

    February 10, 2014 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  11. Southern History

    Hillary may forgive Bill for having sex with Monica Lewinski, but the American People overwhelmingly believe he lied under oath about his affair with an intern. He lied for months, got others to lie for him and ultimately was impeached for his lying. His legacy is the legislation he signed that created the crash in 2008 of the financial industry in the US and Monica Lewinski. He has no other policy or political victories as a President and he is morally corrupt. She can forgive his transgressions as can I, but he sullied his office and is a disgrace as a man. Hillary is the real narcissist and believes we should just "move on" because " who cares" what happened in the past. Hillary cannot be trusted with the future of our country, she has no inner goodness or compassion for others. She is just hate and power and revenge. She will make her enemies fear her and bow down to her greatness. Not in my lifetime. She is the tyrant I fear most. Many of the left policies being promoted today are pure Marxism. But few under 30's can define a Marxist. Words like "universal", "common sense" and "wealth fairness" are used to undermine American cornerstone beliefs and rights to be "fair" to everyone. Yes we are all Created Equal but not guaranteed equal wealth in America. Hillary sees herself as the great savior of women and children and the illegal immigrant, all of whom see her as the woman with the plan to share the wealth with them. She is Karl Marx in a pantsuit.
    Borrowed but true.....
    Let's go back and review Hillary's past record:

    Lied and was fired from the Nixon Watergate investigation for lying to her Democratic boss, her boss later said she should have been dis-barred. (CNN reported this as well, search here)
    Whitewater banking fraud and real estate swindle – her name is all over that
    Rose Law Firm
    White House travel staff firings
    Clinton Foundation scandal
    And in 2008 Barack Obama ran against her and the Clinton culture of corruption and cronyism – his own words

    Would she make a good President? Nope!

    February 10, 2014 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  12. Nathan

    Isn't this over; why dig up a dead dog? Bill tapped it; and now its over..........

    February 10, 2014 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  13. peterz

    If "conservative" was conservative, they attacked the other woman, not the wife.

    February 10, 2014 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  14. JustMe

    That's actually pretty mild compared to what most wives call the other woman.

    February 10, 2014 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  15. Jim

    I'm not a Clinton supporter by any means, but Hillary got this one right. Just listen to the VM she left for Bill Clinton you can find all over the web. The woman was delusional.

    February 10, 2014 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  16. Brenda

    She is a narccistic slob

    February 10, 2014 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  17. slythelie

    Sly, got any other lies? Security for Benghazi was not voted down by Republicans as you state. There was a general cut long before that Congress voted and the senate and Obama approved. The staff at Benghazi begged Clinton for more security. She denied it.

    February 10, 2014 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  18. Double b

    For God's sake...is this the best the GOP can do now? Dredge up old Billy stories to discredit the next POTUS?
    Pathetic and so unoriginal at that...what a miserable cast of characters they have in the national spotlight. One really has to question Rand Paul's state of mind.

    February 10, 2014 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  19. Dean

    What difference does it make?

    February 10, 2014 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  20. barbara

    She called Monica a "narcissistic looney tune?" Now ain't that calling the kettle black.

    February 10, 2014 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  21. silencedogood20

    He's the president of the united states. She's an intern in the white house. They get it on in the oval office. Nope, no power relationship there. –Democrats will believe anything.

    February 10, 2014 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  22. Hillary :-(

    Pot calling the kettle black.

    February 10, 2014 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  23. Silence DoGood

    @Tim Blackwell
    Wow, Hillary is quite the misogynist if this is true. Couple this revelation along with the Vince Foster murder and cover up she's involved with, and only the lowest information voters would consider Hillary in 2016.
    Wikipedia: "Foster's death was concluded to have been a suicide by inquiries/investigations conducted by the United States Park Police, the Department of Justice, the FBI, the United States Congress, Independent Counsel Robert B. Fiske, and Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr. " And remember K.Starr was the rabid conservative attack dog. And you know WAY better than all these folks. And I suppose all of them are in on the great conspiracy.

    Maybe you just ask for Ms.Clinton's birth certificate. Or maybe something involving an Area51 cover up.

    And the misogyny statement stands on its own tin-foil hat.

    February 10, 2014 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  24. P

    Of course this would come out during this point of time, she wants to be viewed has this kind and forgiving women.... LOL Hillary is not fooling me. Bill Clinton was one of the worst president for letting Bin Laden go and causing 9/11 and people are thinking of Hillary... Sure shows me there are a lot of cowards, with no spine in the US today to even think of voting for this fraud!

    February 10, 2014 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  25. Carol

    People's private lives are no one's business but their own, as long as their behavior isn't hurting someone else. The only person who was hurt in this instance was Hillary Clinton. Calling Lewinsky a "narcissistic loony toon" was kinder than what many women call someone their husbands have cheated with. Bill Clinton has apparently been forgiven by many, he's still held in high regard by the majority of Americans. Hillary's role in this is minimal or absent. She owes no one an explanation for why she stayed with her husband. Gee, maybe she loves him! Rand Paul is desperate and bringing this issue up is inexcusable. It's irrelevant.

    February 10, 2014 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
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