The early days of 1996 were tense times inside the Clinton White House. On Jan. 4, the First Couple's top personal aide reported that she had stumbled upon Hillary Clinton's long-lost Rose Law Firm billing records—documents that had been requested by Whitewater prosecutors two years earlier. Ken Starr quickly subpoenaed the First Lady to testify before a federal grand jury, leading to her historic four-hour appearance at the U.S. District Courthouse in Washington on Jan. 26 of that year.And this is surprising how?
But anybody looking through Hillary Clinton's newly released White House records for clues as to how she handled this personal crisis will find … absolutely nothing. The more than 10,000 pages, released by the National Archives in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, purport to be the New York senator's daily schedules for her entire eight-year tenure as First Lady—the first major "document dump" from the Clinton Library in Little Rock.
The heavy deletions are perhaps not surprising, given that the National Archives staffers who approved the release operated under guidance given by former president Clinton in a November 2002 letter recommending strict restrictions on the types of material that can be divulged. (Among the documents that should be "considered for withholding," were anything related to investigations of the White House and all but "non-routine" communications between the president and the First Lady.) The material the National Archives did decide to release still had to be reviewed and approved by Bruce Lindsey, the president's longtime loyal aide who serves as chief custodian of the Clinton archives. "This stuff has been sanitized," said Chris Farrell, the chief of investigations for Judicial Watch, the conservative watchdog group that sued the Archives for release of the records. "Our expectations were very low, and they didn't disappoint." (Clinton campaign spokesman Jay Carson said the Archives released the records under "very strict legal requirements and guidelines that they follow in their redactions as they do for every president's documents. The National Archives made the redactions." He added that Lindsey, former president Clinton's official representative, asked the Archives to "put extensive material back in" and "the vast majority" of the remaining redactions were made to protect the privacy of third parties.)
Of course teh documents were going to be heavily redacted and the last little assertion there cannot be proven.