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Jewish World Review Sept. 24, 1999 /14 Tishrei, 5760

Julia Gorin

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The Financing of Hill's House --
IF THE CLINTONS are having so much trouble affording their new 1.7-million-dollar, five-bedroom Chappaqua house as to once again place themselves in a compromising campaign contribution situation, why don't they just find something more reasonable?

Rather than some isolated, illegally co-signed house an hour away from the city, if the goal is simply to establish New York residency, Hillary and her husband could easily find something affordable in almost any section of the Bronx.

There, with a little help from relatives, the couple could buy or rent a spacious three-bedroom apartment in a quaint little walkup. (The place would definitely have to have at least three bedrooms, though--one for Hillary, one for Chelsea when she stays over, and one for Bill when he stays over.) Actually, do the Clintons even have relatives? Confessed ones, I mean. What about that newly-Jewish grandmother of Hillary's? She's got to be good for a few bucks. On second thought, I think she's campaign-related too.

So then why can't Chelsea help out and get a part-time job at college? Really, is a little filial piety too much to ask? It is a Chinese tradition, after all.

A place in the city could work out quite well for Hillary. This way, she'll be closer to the people she's been so worried about having offended during that recent clemency flap. She'll be able to get down with the people, apologize, and feel their pain on an up-close and daily basis. If she's lucky, she might even bump into one of those terrorists her husband freed, and apologize in person.

I realize it doesn't sound too glamorous, but this alternative sure beats doing something illegal, doesn't it? Especially when it concerns campaign finance, right? I mean, campaign finance reform is something Democrats are always nudging about--and the same $1,000-a-contributor limit applies to personal loans and loan guarantees when they're campaign-related. Certainly the Democratic Senatorial candidate-to-be wouldn't want to violate Federal election laws at a time when the House has passed a new campaign finance reform bill and George W. Bush is voluntarily detailing on the internet the size and source of every contribution.

I'm sure it's equally important to Hillary's supporters in the media that she not violate election laws. That the story exposing this latest indiscretion was a mere blurb buried in the back and at the bottom of the New York Times metro section was probably just a printing boo-boo. Unless, of course, illegal campaign contributions only matter to the media when their candidate isn't the one benefiting by them.

But given the long, open-arm Chappaqua welcome letter that the same paper prominently displayed on its front page recently, it doesn't seem likely that Hill will give up her luxurious new home.

So what could she possibly say about the 1.35-million-dollar collateral that friend Terry McAuliffe put up to guarantee her loan? Will she say, "Oh, the people are just so nice, I would have moved here anyway;" or "As a matter of fact, I'm planning on staying right here in New York even if I DON'T win the election -- heck, I'll stay here even if I don't run!"

You can use that one, Mrs. C. -- it's a freebee. Come to think of it, you probably already have.

JWR contributor Julia Gorin is a stand-up comic and journalist residing in Manhattan. Send your comments to her by clicking here.


09/10/99: 'I cause your pain'
08/20/99: Believing the hype
08/09/99: Chickens bombing ... chickens?
07/30/99: Why I'm eating so much chocolate
07/16/99: The reluctant partisan
06/29/99: Maddy and Bill went up the (Capitol) Hill
04/29/99: "Never again"? This isn't exactly what we had in mind
03/19/99: The Thin Yellow Line
03/03/99: How many more are out there?
07/30/98: Kofi Annan's crimes against sensibility
05/15/98: Susan McDougal: a real stand-up kinda guy
01/08/98: In defense of the appetizing shiksa

©1999, Julia Gorin