Lewinsky saw herself as 'good girl,''sexual soul mate' Documents reveal range of emotions, maturity in dealing with Clinton

The Clinton Investigation

September 22, 1998|By Ellen Gamerman | Ellen Gamerman,SUN NATIONAL STAFF

WASHINGTON -- As Monica Lewinsky fell in love with President Clinton, she began to believe that she had entered an exclusive circle of those he trusted, and understood "the sweet little boy" in him in a way most of the world would never see.

In segments of the 2,800 pages of documents released by the House Judiciary Committee yesterday, Lewinsky emerges as a self-described "good girl" -- desperate to please everyone from the grand jury to Clinton himself. Alternately, she calls herself a "sexual soul mate" who believed that as her relationship with the president progressed she gained great access to his emotional life.

The documents speak for a Monica Lewinsky whose voice has yet to be heard in public. She emerges as both too young and too old for her years.

In interviews with investigators, Lewinsky said Clinton had told her, "My life is empty," and was gripped by periods of deep remorse and times when he missed his dead mother. She described him as torn between his "Saturday night personality," where he indulged his sexual impulses, and a "Sunday personality," where he regretted his actions and went to church.

But if Lewinsky believed she could see past the layers of the presidential Clinton -- "I thought he had a beautiful soul," she told the grand jury -- the president's view of Lewinsky was far more clinical. He suggested that the former White House intern, dubbed "The Stalker" by certain administration regulars, was a decent person, but a handful.

"She got upset from time to time," he told the grand jury. "I was upset about her conduct." Clinton called her "basically a good girl with a good heart and a good mind." But he added, "I think she is burdened by some unfortunate conditions of her, her upbringing."

He said he knew she would not remain silent after their relationship ended: "It was a part of her psyche."

Throughout the documents, Lewinsky can sound like the class drama queen. "I want to hug him so bad right now I could cry," she wrote in an e-mail. It was as though she had snagged the guy voted most popular by the rest of the world, noting, "Everybody was enamored with him."

Despite what she suspects is her better judgment, Lewinsky cannot help but fuel the rich fantasy life that her relationship with Clinton created.

"I loved you with all my heart, Bill," she wrote in a draft e-mail. "I wanted to be with you all of the time. Most recently in London, I walked the streets thinking how content I would be to walk the streets at your side while you spoke of things past -- filled the air and my soul with your knowledge of history."

She hardly shrinks from power. She submits a written "wish list" of dream jobs to the president, which includes a job as an assistant producer at any of the networks, an MTV staffer or "anything at George," a hip political magazine. In her testimony, she states, the president "certainly owed me" help in seeking a new job and added that she deserved an apology from Clinton after her family refrained from attacking him when the dalliances were revealed.

At the same time, she also appears as a naive young woman looking for wisdom from the powerful men around her. She is obedient, not complaining after getting smacked on the backside by Clinton confidant Vernon Jordan after one of their meetings, according to transcripts of her interviews with investigators.

Lewinsky occasionally combines sexual affairs, personal insecurities and national events in the same thought. She recalled that she may have sent Clinton sunglasses, an erotic postcard and note about education reform all on the same day -- Oct. 16, 1997.

With equal detail, she complains about "a bad hair day" that kept her in her infamous DKNY beret during an encounter with the president, and attempts to comfort the president after the death of the first soldier in Bosnia. Lewinsky gives the fullest account yet of the day last January when prosecutors from independent counsel Kenneth Starr's team and FBI investigators cornered her in the Pentagon City mall and took her to a room at the Ritz Carlton hotel to interrogate her. She describes feeling terrified that she would be immediately sent to jail if she left.

"I was scared to death," she told the grand jurors. Lewinsky said she repeatedly turned to Psalm 21 during this ordeal, which opens, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me, far from my prayer, from the words of my cry?"

Lewinsky testified that investigators told her she couldn't call her then-lawyer Frank Carter, who was recommended by Jordan, for fear that word of their investigation would get back to Clinton's circle. They also tried to keep her from calling her mother, who was in New York, Lewinsky said. When she insisted, she said Starr's deputy, Jackie Bennett, told her, "You're 24, you're smart, you're old enough, you don't need to call your mommy."

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