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Talking Points

Tuesday, September 22, 1998; Page A29

In the early months of the Monica S. Lewinsky scandal, the authorship of a list of "talking points" used by Lewinsky in her discussions with Linda R. Tripp was the subject of considerable speculation. Lewinsky used the talking points to coach Tripp in how to handle anticipated questioning by lawyers for Paula Jones in a sexual harassment lawsuit against the president. Evidence presented yesterday included this summary by the independent counsel's office of Lewinsky's account of how the talking points evolved.

"At some point Lewinsky typed on her home computer the talking points about how Tripp should testify. The contents and ideas for the talking points were a summary of things that Lewinsky and Tripp had discussed off and on since March 1997. There was no lawyer involved in preparing the talking points, nor did Lewinsky receive any instructions from the President, Jordan [presidential friend and lawyer Vernon E. Jordan Jr.], Carter [Lewinsky's first lawyer, Francis D. Carter], or anyone from the White House. Lewinsky gave the talking points to Tripp at the Pentagon. Tripp read the points and made positive statements about them by saying, 'That's true,' and, 'This is good.' Tripp had indicated that Tripp wanted to file an affidavit to avoid testifying in the Jones matter."

© Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company

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