SPARTANBURG, SC (Talon News) — Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John F. Kerry (D-MA) has allegedly been involved in a two-year extramarital affair with an intern beginning in Spring 2001, according to The Drudge Report on Thursday.
Drudge said a full-scale investigation into this is under way at ”’Time Magazine,”’ ABC News, ”’The Washington Post,”’ ”’The Hill,”’ and the Associated Press.
“There is no lawsuit testimony this time [like former President Bill Clinton with Paula Jones],” a top source told Drudge Thursday night. “It is hard to prove.”
When asked about the investigation on Thursday, Jack Stokes, a spokesman for the AP, told the ”’Editor & Publisher,”’ “We simply don’t comment on stories we are pursuing or not pursuing.”
In addition, the executive editor for ”’The Washington Post,”’ Leonard Downie, Jr., admitted the newspaper was looking into Kerry’s past, but said he was not aware of an extramarital affair.
“What we’re finding, I don’t know,” Downie exclaimed to the Editor & Publisher. “This is the first we are looking into him this way.”
A source at one of the major television networks told Talon News that they are specifically forbidden to talk about this story on the air until one of the other major television networks reports on it first.
The unknown woman involved is a former employee for the AP, according to Drudge, and a previous intern with Kerry. Drudge states that she “recently fled the country, reportedly at the prodding of Kerry.” The woman is allegedly in an undisclosed location in Africa after a top news producer approached her about her relationship to Kerry, Drudge reports.
A friend of the woman told her story to a reporter in late 2003 and said she had “fantastic stories” that may bring an end to the Kerry presidential campaign, Drudge continues.
On Friday morning, when asked by radio talk show host Don Imus about the alleged intern affair, Kerry replied, “There’s nothing there.”
Imus did not pursue the questioning any further.
Kerry is currently married to ketchup millionaire heiress Teresa Heinz Kerry.
Yet, retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark, who dropped out of the race on Wednesday and will officially endorse Kerry for the Democrat nomination today, told a group of reporters earlier this week, “Kerry will implode over an intern issue.”
“Three reporters in attendance confirm Clark made the startling comments,” Drudge contends. Actually, ShortNews.com reports Clark reluctantly confirmed he made the statement on Thursday.
These reporters who heard Clark make the statements are amazed the retired Army general would endorse Kerry.
Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, who last week said he would drop out of the race if he did not win the Wisconsin primary on Feb. 17, apparently changed his mind because of these looming charges against Kerry, campaign officials told Drudge.
But Dean campaign officials said this is “absolutely false” and “didn’t have anything to do with our decision” to remain in the race.
“I actually think it’s too bad this is starting,” an anonymous Dean campaign aide told Scotsman.com. “It has no relevance to the campaign.”
Nevertheless, in the past few days, the criticism of Kerry has become more intense by the Dean campaign, including Dean describing Kerry as a part of “the corrupt political culture in Washington.”
Yet Democratic sources imply the Republican Party had something to do with this and have accused them of playing “dirty tricks” in an attempt to smear the leading candidate to face Bush.
Kerry has been racking up big victories in primaries and caucuses for the Democrat nomination to face President George W. Bush in November. In all, he has won 12 of 14 states.
Kerry is expected to be in Wisconsin Friday campaigning for next Tuesday’s primary election.
The Kerry campaign did not immediately return calls inquiring about these allegations. However, the embattled presidential candidate is scheduled to appear exclusively today on the Don Imus radio talk show to talk about these allegations made by Drudge.
Matt Drudge, who was responsible for breaking the story about Clinton’s affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky in 1998, cleared his Web site for most of Thursday to devote space to this story.
But this is not the first time Kerry has been accused of being engaged in an extramarital affair.
While separated from his first wife, millionaire Julia Thorne, in the mid-1980s, Kerry was rumored to be linked to Morgan Fairchild, Cornelia Guest and Patti Davis, the liberal daughter of Ronald and Nancy Reagan.
Then, the ”’Boston Globe”’ reported last year that Kerry had an affair in the 1980s with a young British reporter while still married to Thorne. When she and the other alleged women eventually heard that Kerry was still married until 1988, it “came as a surprise to some of his frequent companions,” according to the Boston Globe.
Last week, the ”’Boston Herald’s”’ Inside Track had a story on a recent ”’National Enquirer”’ investigation into Kerry’s “eye for Hollywood honeys” including Fairchild, Michele Philips and Catherine Oxenberg. The Herald added that Fairchild and Philips were so disgusted by Kerry that they decided to give political contributions to other candidates running for the Democratic presidential nomination instead of the Massachusetts senator.
The ”’Boston Herald”’ also noted that the ”’National Enquirer”’ story made note of a “22-year-old blonde who was spotted around midnight ‘dropping off her resume’ at Kerry’s Louisburg Square home while wife Teresa Heinz was in Nantucket.”
The Congressional Quarterly’s Craig Crawford remarked that Chris Lahane, Clark’s press secretary and a previous adviser to former Vice President Al Gore, has known about the Kerry affair story for a while and “has shopped around for a long time” to find someone to publish it.
Interestingly, Crawford states Lehane also briefly worked as an adviser for Kerry’s latest presidential bid.
“The Kerry camp has long expected to deal with this, and have assured party leaders they can handle it,” Crawford said.
Crawford added that the affair story was “one reason the Gore vetters in 2000 shied away from Kerry as a running mate choice” because of the possibility it might get leaked and remind people of “Clinton’s personal failings” with Monica Lewinsky and Paula Jones.
Responding to questions about whether the Lewinsky affair during the Clinton impeachment was affecting his job as president, Kerry told the ”’Boston Globe”’ in a Sept. 21, 2001 story, “I think it is entirely possible [the extramarital affair by Clinton] was a distraction that kept him from performing his duty as president.”
Also, in a statement from the U.S. Senate’s closed deliberations on the articles of impeachment against Clinton on Feb. 12, 1999, Kerry made some rather intriguing comments about the former president’s infidelity that reveal his thoughts on the matter.
Responding to criticism that Clinton’s affair was corrupting American culture, Kerry defended the two-term Democrat president by saying the Clinton affair gave parents a tool for teaching their kids about various character flaws.
“If anything, there may now be a greater appreciation for the trouble you can get into for certain behavior,” Kerry said in the statement at the time. “More parents are teaching their children about lying, about humiliation, about family hurt, about public responsibility, than before we ever heard the name of Monica Lewinsky.”
Addressing the affair itself in the statement, Kerry said he was “deeply disturbed by” it, but said it was “understandable” that Clinton wanted to “cover it up.”
Before this story about his alleged affair with an intern was released to the public, Kerry was already in hot water over a photograph showing Kerry with political activist Jane Fonda at a 1970 anti-war rally in Pennsylvania published on the front page of the Washington Times on Wednesday. Kerry has attempted to portray himself as a hero of the Vietnam War, but has distanced himself from the aggressive protests he took part in after he returned from the war.
Some political observers are already speculating that this latest turmoil in the Democrat presidential race is laying the groundwork for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) to become the nominee in a brokered Democrat convention in Boston this summer.