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Arkansas' First Lady Appears at Grand Jury

June 02, 1995|From Reuters

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The wife of Arkansas Gov. Jim Guy Tucker appeared Thursday before a grand jury investigating the Whitewater scandal, but said later that she told the panel nothing beyond a prepared statement.

"After 18 months of being harassed, including having my children harassed, there was no way I was going to talk to the prosecutor without my husband or my attorney being present," Betty Tucker said after spending one hour in the federal courthouse here.

Mrs. Tucker said she did not speak to the grand jury beyond a prepared statement and the text of the statement was not made public. Her lawyer, George Collins, disclosed earlier that he had advised her to invoke her Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination.

Gov. Tucker, who arrived at the courthouse with his wife, said after her appearance before the panel: "Other people don't have the resources to stand up to this. If I don't, who will?"

Both Tuckers had originally been called to testify by Whitewater independent counsel Kenneth W. Starr, but the subpoena for Gov. Tucker was withdrawn earlier Thursday.

Although they had no connection to the Whitewater project involving President and Hillary Rodham Clinton, the Tuckers borrowed hundreds of thousands of dollars from Madison Guaranty Savings & Loan, the same Arkansas firm that financed the Whitewater real estate development.

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