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Clinton Strongly Denies Sexual-Harassment Claims

December 18, 1997| From Reuters

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — President Clinton on Wednesday emphatically denied all of the allegations made against him in Paula Corbin Jones' sexual-harassment lawsuit and urged a federal judge to dismiss the case.

Using his strongest language in the case to date, Clinton said in a court filing here that the lawsuit was a "groundless attempt" by Jones and her conservative supporters to humiliate him.

He said he never sexually harassed Jones or any other woman. "President Clinton further denies that he discriminated against the plaintiff or had a custom, habit, pattern or practice of improper conduct with respect to any other women," Clinton's attorney, Robert S. Bennett, said in the court filing.

Jones has accused Clinton of exposing himself to her and asking her for oral sex inside a Little Rock hotel room in May 1991 while he was governor of Arkansas and she was a state employee.

She says she was intimidated and was later denied promotions after refusing sexual advances by Clinton. She is seeking damages of $525,000.

Her lawyers have said they will try to demonstrate that Clinton, as governor, engaged in a pattern of providing promotions, salary increases and other benefits to women who granted him sexual favors.

One by one, Clinton "adamantly" denied those allegations on Wednesday and requested that U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright throw out the case, which is scheduled for trial in May.

"President Clinton respectfully requests that [Jones'] amended complaint be dismissed with prejudice and that the court enter judgment in his favor," he said.

Clinton's motion said any damage suffered by Jones in the controversy was "caused by the acts of plaintiff and her representatives" and not Clinton.

There was no indication from Webber on whether she would hold a hearing before ruling on Clinton's motion for dismissal.

Clinton's attorneys on Wednesday described the lawsuit as "simply a groundless attempt by Paula Jones and those who are financially supporting her to use the judicial system improperly to try to humiliate and embarrass the president."

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