DECEMBER 15, 1995
KWAME HOLMAN: The 9 o'clock deadline imposed by the Senate Whitewater Committee came and went this morning and Chairman Alfonse D'Amato still did not have the White House notes his committee subpoenaed. The notes were taken during a Whitewater-related meeting in 1993 by this man, William Kennedy, the one-time personal attorney to then Governor Bill Clinton.
SEN. ALFONSE D'AMATO, Chairman, Whitewater Committee: (Capitol Hill) I am very concerned that the White House has put us in this position where the Committee is forced to spend far too much time and energy to obtain relevant evidence which we are entitled to and which should have been produced upon request.
KWAME HOLMAN: The Committee debated for an hour before voting to ask the full Senate to enforce the subpoena. That could lead to a showdown in the courts.
SEN. ALFONSE D'AMATO: The vote is ten to eight. The Committee has directed that the matter be reported to the floor.
KWAME HOLMAN: At that 1993 meeting, Kennedy, along with David Kendall, the President's current personal lawyer, and other White House lawyers, discussed Whitewater. The meeting occurred at the same time federal investigators were considering criminal charges against James McDougal, owner of the now-defunct Madison Guaranty Savings & Loan and the Clintons' former Whitewater business partner.
SEN. CHRISTOPHER BOND, (R) Missouri: The government lawyers had in their possession and may have turned over to the personal lawyer information which would be very helpful in determining the extent of liability or exposure that the individuals, Mr. & Mrs. Clinton as individuals, might have to the government.
KWAME HOLMAN: Yesterday, the White House offered to deliver the notes from that meeting but with conditions Committee Republicans complained simply were designed to delay the process.
SEN. PETE DOMENICI, (R) New Mexico: (Yesterday) If the White House really wants to and they aren't attaching conditions that are unreasonable and would prejudice this Committee's ability to get its job done, they will get worked out. If not, I assume we will let a court decide. And even that's weeks and perhaps months away.
KWAME HOLMAN: Committee Democrats said the White House offer was reasonable.
SEN. CHRISTOPHER DODD, (D) Connecticut: (Yesterday) So it seems to me it's in our interest as a committee here to try and find a way to take advantage of the offer to get the notes and find out whether or not there's any of these conditions that can be renegotiated. But we shouldn't lose that opportunity.
KWAME HOLMAN: This current confrontation hones in on two central questions before the Committee: Did White House officials seek information about the investigation into the failure of Madison Savings & Loan, and if so, what did it do with that information?
SEN. ORRIN HATCH, (R) Utah: If the White House lawyers gained non-public government information about Whitewater and then passed that information on to Clinton's--to President Clinton's personal lawyers, that would be a clear violation of law.
KWAME HOLMAN: Both the Committee and the White House say they're still open to negotiation
over the notes, but chances of heading off full Senate action next week do not appear to be