Research

Clinton’s Convenient Library Lockdown

During Her 2008 Presidential Run, Clinton’s Records Were On Lockdown…Now We Know Why

Last Night, The Washington Free Beacon Reported On New Records From One Of Clinton’s Closest Friends, Diane Blair. “The Washington Free Beacon, a conservative website which posted its story late Sunday evening, said it based its reporting on the writings of Diane Blair, a now-deceased friend of the Clintons. Blair’s papers are housed at the University of Arkansas, where she taught political science.” (Dan Merica, “Report: Documents Reveal Hillary Clinton’s Private Reaction To Her Husband’s Cheating Scandal With Monica Lewinsky,” CNN, 2/10/14)

  • Blair, A Professor At University Of Arkansas, Was One Of “Hillary’s Closest Friends In Arkansas” And Considered By Clinton “To Be The Sister That She Never Had.” “The overwhelming nature of the task became immediately clear to Diane Blair, an early member of the Defense Team and Hillary’s closest friend in Arkansas. Blair was a fifty-three-year-old political science professor at the University of Arkansas. Years later, Blair said she believed that Hillary considered her to be the sister that she never had. For her, then, defending the Clintons was virtually a family matter.” (Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta Jr., Her Way, 2007, p. 92)

Blair’s Archive Contains “Many Previously Unpublished Documents” From One Of Clinton’s Closest Friends. “The full memo is one of many previously unpublished documents contained in the archive of one of Hillary Clinton’s best friends and advisers, documents that portray the former first lady, secretary of State, and potential 2016 presidential candidate as a strong, ambitious, and ruthless Democratic operative.” (Alana Goodman, “The Hillary Papers,” The Washington Free Beacon, 2/9/14)

The Blair Documents Include “Correspondence, Journal Entries, Memos And Interviews From The Mid-1970s To About 2000.” “The trove of documents include correspondence, journal entries, memos and interviews from the mid-1970s to about 2000 from one of Clinton’s best friends, political science professor Diane Blair, who died in 2000. While they have been open to the public since 2010, The Washington Free Beacon reported on and published the contents of the files for the first time on Sunday night.” (Tal Kopan, “Report: New Docs Reveal Clintons,” Politico, 2/10/14)

The Blair Archive Includes Documents That Contradict Clinton’s Previous Public Positions – Including On Single-Payer Health Care

The Diane Blair Papers Included “Clinton’s Support For A Single Payer Health Care System, As Well As Her Thoughts On Foreign Policy.” “In addition to Hillary Clinton’s private thoughts on the Lewinsky matter, the Washington Free Beacon reported that 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.” (Dan Merica, “Report: Documents Reveal Hillary Clinton’s Private Reaction To Her Husband’s Cheating Scandal With Monica Lewinsky,” CNN, 2/10/14)

In An Account About A Family Dinner At The White House, Blaire Wrote That Hillary Clinton Thinks “Single-Payer Necessary” And Could Be Added To Medicare. “On Feb. 23, 1993, Blair joined the Clintons for a family dinner at the White House. The subject of health care reform came up. ‘At dinner, [Hillary] to [Bill] at length on the complexities of health care—thinks managed competition a crock; single-payer necessary; maybe add to Medicare,’ Blair wrote.” (Alana Goodman, “The Hillary Papers,” The Washington Free Beacon, 2/9/14)

  • FLASHBACK: Clinton In A 2008 Interview With The New York Times: “I Have Thought About This, As You Might Guess, For 15 Years And I Never Seriously Considered A Single Payer System.” QUESTION: “Let’s talk for a minute about the formulation of your plan. I’m interested in how seriously you considered proposing a single payer system and at what point in that discussion did you decide to propose an individual mandate?” HILLARY CLINTON: “You know, I have thought about this, as you might guess, for 15 years and I never seriously considered a single payer system. Obviously, I listened to arguments about its advantages and disadvantages, and many people who I have a great deal of respect for certainly think that it is the only way to go. But I said, as you quoted me, that we had to do what would appeal to and actually coincide with what the body politic will and political coalition building was.” (Sen. Hillary Clinton, Interview With The New York Times, 3/27/08)

THE BLAIR ARCHIVE WAS SEALED DURING CLINTON’S LAST PRESIDENTIAL RUN

During Clinton’s Last Presidential Campaign, Questions Were Raised About Why Blair’s Archives Were Not “Available To The Public Until Well After Election Day 2008.” “And now questions are being raised about why another set of papers relevant to her political career at yet another Arkansas library will not be available to the public until well after election day 2008, despite earlier indications that the papers would have been released by now. Those papers were written by Diane Blair, a close friend of Bill and Hillary Clinton, who taught and engaged in Arkansas politics until her death due to lung cancer in 2000.” (Jake Tapper, “Clinton Papers Won’t Be Released Until After Election,” ABC News, 11/6/07)

In October 2007, The University Of Arkansas Made The “Questionable” Announcement That The Blair Papers Were Not Processed And Would Not Be Made Public Until 2009. “Last month the University of Arkansas announced that the Blair Papers would not be made public until 2009. Andrea Cantrell, the head of research services at the university library’s Special Collections, told reporters that the Papers were not yet processed. But that claim seems questionable, according to statements the Library itself has made obtained by ABC News.” (Jake Tapper, “Clinton Papers Won’t Be Released Until After Election,” ABC News, 11/6/07)

However, Earlier Reports From The University Claimed The Archiving Process For The Blair Papers Was “Nearing Completion.” “In its 2005-2006 University Libraries annual report, for example, the University of Arkansas reported that the process was almost done. ‘Archivists were hired to process both the Diane Blair Papers and the records of former third district Congressman Asa Hutchinson, and both collections are nearing completion.’” (Jake Tapper, “Clinton Papers Won’t Be Released Until After Election,” ABC News, 11/6/07)

  • In 2006, A University Newsletter Also Described The Archiving Process As Already Completed. “Moreover, while in November 2005 the University appointed Kerry Jones the ‘Diane Blair Papers Archivist,’ the University Of Arkansas Library Newsletter one year later, in 2006, implied the job has been completed, describing Jones as having ‘previously processed the papers of the late Diane Blair.’” (Jake Tapper, “Clinton Papers Won’t Be Released Until After Election,” ABC News, 11/6/07)

The Clintons Also Resisted Diane Blair’s Efforts To Write A Book Off Of Her Material From The 1992 Campaign

Diane Blair’s Report Contains Research And Candid Interviews From Clinton’s 1992 Presidential Campaign. “The Blair papers consist of more than 30 years’ worth of records, research papers, news clippings, letters, photos, videotapes and audiotapes collected by Blair, a close friend of the Clintons who died of lung cancer on June 26, 2000. … The collection also includes a series of 126 interviews that Blair conducted with Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign staff. They are dubbed the ‘Blair Report.’” (Carolyne Park, “Blair Papers Not Ready For Release,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 11/16/07)

“The Clintons Resisted” Blair’s Efforts To Write A Book About The Campaign Based Off Her Report. “She put together two ‘big bound volumes’ with the transcribed interviews and a 30-page introduction. She hoped to write a book, but the Clintons resisted.” (Carolyne Park, “Blair Papers Not Ready For Release,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 11/16/07)

  • “Only Two Copies Of Blair Report Were Made. She Gave One Copy To Bill And Hillary When They Visited The Blair Family At Their Lakeside House In Arkansas In August 1993. She Kept The Other Copy For Herself.” (Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta Jr., Her Way, 2007, p. 103)

AND THE BLAIR ARCHIVE WASN’T THE ONLY LOCKED DOWN LIBRARY IN 2008 – THE CLINTON LIBRARY WAS DESCRIBED AS “LITTLE ROCK’S FORT KNOX”

At The Height Of Clinton’s 2008 Campaign, Barely “One Half Of 1 Percent” Of The Clinton Library’s Archives Were Released To The Public. “Nearly three years after the Clinton Library opened—and more than 21 months after its trove of records became subject to the Freedom of Information Act—barely one half of 1 percent of the 78 million pages of documents and 20 million e-mail messages at the federally funded facility are public, according to the National Archives.” (Michael Isikoff, “Hillary’s Secret White House Papers,” Newsweek, 10/20/07)

During Clinton’s Last Campaign, The Clinton Library Was Described As “Little Rock’s Fort Knox.” “The razor-edged rectangle of the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Library juts from a bank on the burbling Arkansas River like a massive metal file cabinet plopped in the mud. To tourists, it’s a place to ogle the 42nd president’s golf clubs or the former first lady’s department-store-bought wedding dress. But to the dozens of reporters, historians, anti-Clinton types and eccentrics who have filed requests for documents from the library’s archive, it is Little Rock’s Fort Knox.”  (Glenn Thrush, “Clinton Archive A Tough Request,” [New York] Newsday, 3/19/07)

“Nearly 2 Million Pages Of Documents” Covering Clinton’s White House Years Were “Locked Up In A Building” At The Clinton Library. “Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton cites her experience as a compelling reason voters should make her president, but nearly 2 million pages of documents covering her White House years are locked up in a building here, obscuring a large swath of her record as first lady.” (Peter Nicholas, “Clinton’s First Lady Records Locked Up,” Los Angeles Times, 8/14/07)