In a moment reminiscent of his own “It depends upon what the meaning of the word ‘is‘ is” chicanery, Bill Clinton released a statement yesterday.
“President Clinton knows nothing about the terrible crimes [Epstein] pleaded guilty to in Florida some years ago, or those with which he has been recently charged in New York,” the statement said.
It raises the question: if he knows nothing about the crimes, how could he know they were “terrible”? That detail aside, note the careful wording of the next line:
“In 2002 and 2003, President Clinton took a total of four trips on Jeffrey Epstein’s airplane: one to Europe, one to Asia, and two to Africa, which included stops in connection with the work of the Clinton Foundation,”
This part could easily be true, and it would serve as a convenient lawyerly escape hatch for Clinton, who, if questioned further, could honestly say, “I told you already about my flights with Epstein.” The point is, the statement only relates to 2002 and 2003. He doesn’t refer to other years in which he was alleged to have flown on the “Lolita Express,” Epstein’s private Boeing 727, a total of 26 or 27 times, depending on the source.
Underscoring his awareness of the accusations against him, Clinton’s statement goes on to say:
“Staff, supporters of the foundation, and his Secret Service detail traveled on every leg of every trip. He had one meeting with Epstein in his Harlem office in 2002, and around the same time made one brief visit to Epstein’s New York apartment with a staff member and his security detail. He’s not spoken to Epstein in well over a decade, and he has never been to Little St. James Island, Epstein’s ranch in New Mexico, or his residence in Florida.”
This outright denial of ever visiting Little St. James Island is the only meat in the statement, the rest serves merely to buttress this claim. Notice that it doesn’t say “Bill Clinton never visited,” only “he.” This is either Clinton creating verbal wiggle room (as in his infamous “I never had sexual relations with that woman“) for himself in the future, or just an outright lie.
Investigative journalist Conchita Sarnoff, who has been investigating Epstein since his lax plea deal in 2008, and who published a book about the Epstein case in 2015, put it simply on Fox News last night. About Bill Clinton’s statement, she said, “I’m saying, sadly, that he is not telling the truth.” Moreover, according to Epstein’s lawyer Gerald Lefcourt, Epstein was a co-founder of the Clinton Global Initiative and, according to Sarnoff, is alleged to have seeded the fund with $4 million. Sarnoff’s book is titled “TrafficKing.”
Finally, the statement claims that Clinton hasn’t spoken to Epstein in “over a decade,” which is the length of time since he was first arrested for sex crimes against minors. That would be a logical time to cease communications, especially since Hillary was running for president at the time.
Perhaps the most shocking detail of the story is that Epstein is still alive.