Kathleen Willey was a White House volunteer aide who, on March 15, 1998, alleged on the TV news program 60 Minutes that Bill Clinton had sexually assaulted her on November 29, 1993, during his first term as president. She had been subpoenaed to testify in the Paula Jones sexual harassment case.
According to Willey, during a meeting in the private study of the Oval Office, Clinton had embraced her tightly and kissed her on the mouth. Clinton denied assaulting Willey. The Clinton White House released details of 15 letters and 12 telephone messages that Willey had sent to Clinton after the alleged incident. In all of these, she appeared friendly and eager for more contact with Clinton.
According to Linda Tripp’s grand jury testimony, she felt Willey pursued a romance with Clinton from the start of her White House affiliation. Willey had speculated with Tripp as to how she might be able to set up an assignation between herself and the president. She routinely attended events at which Clinton would be present, wearing a black dress she believed he liked. According to Tripp’s testimony, she wondered if she and Clinton could arrange to meet in a home to which she had access, on the Chesapeake Bay.
Investigation and current status
The Final Report of the U.S. Office of the Independent Counsel report noted that "Willey and President Clinton are the only direct witnesses to their meeting, and their accounts differ substantially on the crucial facts of what occurred." It also stated "Willey gave false information to the FBI about her sexual relationship with a former boyfriend, and acknowledged having lied about it when the agents confronted her with contradictory evidence. Following Willey’s acknowledgment of the lie, the Independent Counsel agreed not to prosecute her for false statements in this regard." According to Independent Counsel Robert Ray’s report, "Willey’s [Paula] Jones deposition testimony differed from her grand jury testimony on material aspects of the alleged incident."
According to a book critical of Clinton by Candice E. Jackson, Tripp told Larry King in February 1999 that Willey is “an honest person” who was “telling the truth” about having been sexually assaulted by Clinton. However, Tripp’s grand jury testimony differs from Willey’s claims regarding inappropriate sexual advances.
Willey has a history of controversial claims including telling the FBI she was pregnant and she had a miscarriage when she did not. On the evening of March 19, 1998, Julie Hiatt Steele, a friend of Willey, released an affidavit, accusing the former White House aide of asking her to lie to corroborate Ms. Willey's account of being sexually groped by President Clinton in the Oval Office. An attempt by Kenneth Starr to prosecute Steele for making false statements and obstructing justice ended in a mistrial and Starr declined to seek a retrial after Steele sought an investigation against the former independent counsel for prosecutorial misconduct.
In March 2000, U.S. District Court Judge Royce Lamberth ruled that President Clinton had “committed a criminal violation” of the Privacy Act by releasing letters from Willey to the president that were written even after the alleged incident. A three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court of Appeals later criticized this ruling, though Willey subsequently filed suit against the White House, over this issue.
On November 6, 2007, her book Target: Caught in the Crosshairs of Bill and Hillary Clinton was published by World Ahead Media. In her book, Willey claimed that on Labor Day weekend 2007, her house was burglarized, with the only thing stolen being a manuscript of her book. Willey stated that she believes individuals with ties to Bill and Hillary Clinton are responsible for the break-in. She also filed a police report.
Willey's second husband, Edward E. Willey Jr., committed suicide on November 29, 1993—the day she claimed Clinton’s sexual misconduct took place. She wrote in her book and acknowledged in a 60 Minutes interview her suspicions of the Clintons’ involvement in her husband’s suicide pointing to similarities of White House aide Vince Foster’s death,which was also determined as suicide.
- "Sparking the Scandal". TIME. February 2, 1998. Retrieved 2008-05-22.
- (OIC Final Report, Appendix B)
- pdf)[dead link]
- Candice E. Jackson, 'Their Lives: The Women Targeted by the Clinton Machine, (World Ahead Media, 2004) page 148
- "Stalking the president". Salon.com. January 1999. Retrieved 2007-11-17.
- "The Lives Of Kathleen Willey". CNN. March 30, 1998. Retrieved 2007-11-17.
- John M. Broader (March 19, 1998). "Friend Accuses Willey for Plea to her to Lie". New York Times. Retrieved February 15, 2014.
- Peter Levy (November 30, 2001). Encyclopedia of the Clinton Presidency. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 328–329. ISBN 978-0313312946. Retrieved February 15, 2014.
- "Judge rules White House violated privacy of Kathleen Willey". CNN. March 29, 1998. Archived from the original on January 14, 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-22.
- Stout, David (May 27, 2000). "White House Loses and Gains in Ruling on a Privacy Act Case". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-05-22.
- "Willey Files Suit Against Clintons". CNN. September 21, 2000. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- Kathleen Willey, Target: Caught in the cross hairs of Bill and Hillary Clinton (World Ahead Media, Nov 2007)
- "Kathleen's Story - Part 3". Style Weekly. Richmond, Virginia. 13 July 1999. Retrieved 18 February 2014.
- Roop, Jason (20 February 2008). "Kathleen's Crusade". Style Weekly. Retrieved 18 February 2014.
- Kathleen Willey on Facebook
- Key Player: Kathleen Willey. Special Report: Clinton Accused. Washington Post, Updated 1998-10-02
- Excerpt From Kathleen Willey's Deposition to Paula Jones' Lawyers, Coffee Shop Times
- Excerpt From President Clinton's Deposition to Paula Jones' Lawyers Regarding Willey, Coffee Shop Times
- Willey's involvement was life-altering USA Today
- Slick Willey Salon.com, 1998-03-18
- Kathleen Willey and Anita Hill Creators Syndicate, 1998-03-18
- Willey and the Beast Albion Monitor, 1998-03-31
- Tripp's testimony (600 page pdf).
- Starr and Willey: The Untold Story, The Nation, May 17, 1999
- Stalking the president Salon.com, 1999-01-22.
- "Kathleen's crusade" The Hook, 2008-02-21