For a guy who didn’t know anything, Bill Clinton was sure around a lot.
The case of convicted billionaire sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein exploded into the public eye again after the billionaire’s arrest in New York on Saturday on charges of sexually abusing underage girls.
In a statement Monday, former President Clinton denied knowing anything about Epstein’s alleged activities and minimized the number of times Clinton traveled aboard Epstein’s private jet, but flight records from the plane and Clinton’s statement don’t appear to match up.
Spokesman Angel Urena posted Clinton’s statement Monday on Twitter:
Statement on Jeffrey Epstein. pic.twitter.com/98ha9YYd1l
— Angel Ureña (@angelurena) July 8, 2019
“President Clinton knows nothing about the terrible crimes Jeffrey Epstein pleaded guilty to in Florida some years ago, or those with which he has been recently charged in New York,” the statement said.
“In 2002 and 2003, President Clinton took a total of four trips on Jeffrey Epstein’s airplane: one to Europe, one to Asia, and two to Africa, which included stops in connection with the work of the Clinton Foundation. Staff, supporters of the foundation, and his Secret Service detail traveled on every leg of every trip. He had one meeting with Epstein in his Harlem office in 2002, and around the same time made one brief visit to Epstein’s New York apartment with a staff member and his security detail. He’s not spoken to Epstein in well over a decade, and he has never been to Little St. James Island, Epstein’s ranch in New Mexico, or his residence in Florida.”
Epstein was convicted in 2008 of procuring a minor for prostitution and is a registered sex offender in Florida.
However, he was suspected of many more crimes and “allegedly had a team of traffickers who procured girls as young as 12 to service his friends on ‘Orgy Island,’ an estate on Epstein’s 72-acre island, called Little St. James, in the U.S. Virgin Islands,” as a Fox News article from May 2016 reported.
Epstein’s reputation as a man who preyed on young girls got the plane dubbed the “Lolita Express” by the media.
A name like that might make it understandable why Clinton would want to distance himself from Epstein and his current criminal troubles, but the same Fox News report that discussed “Orgy Island” placed the former president aboard Epstein’s plane much more than the four times Clinton’s statement acknowledged.
In fact, the Fox report put the number at at least 26.
“Clinton’s presence aboard Jeffrey Epstein’s Boeing 727 on 11 occasions has been reported, but flight logs show the number is more than double that, and trips between 2001 and 2003 included extended junkets around the world with Epstein and fellow passengers identified on manifests by their initials or first names, including ‘Tatiana,’” Fox reported.
“The tricked-out jet earned its Nabakov-inspired nickname because it was reportedly outfitted with a bed where passengers had group sex with young girls.”
Despite the jaunty-sounding nickname of “Lolita Express,” there’s nothing humorous about young girls being sexually abused. Epstein got off with a relatively light punishment from his Florida conviction – a nominal 13-month jail sentence that in practice resulted in minimal time behind bars, according to the New York Post.
Bad as it already looked, Epstein’s case got worse after a search of his Manhattan mansion turned up “at least hundreds — and perhaps thousands — of sexually suggestive photos of fully- or partially-nude females,’ some of whom ‘appear to be’ underage girls.”
The case is also likely to at least spatter anyone close to it, including President Donald Trump.
The man Trump chose for labor secretary, Alexander Acosta, was the U.S. attorney in the Southern District of Florida who supervised Epstein’s 2008 plea deal. (House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are already calling for Acosta’s resignation over the case, according to NBC.)
Trump himself was also once a friend of Epstein’s, though White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said Tuesday that Trump had not seen Epstein in “10 or 15 years,” according to MSN.
But for Bill Clinton, those flight logs could be damaging to his story – the way a certain stain on a White House intern’s dress was damaging to Clinton’s denials of a tawdry affair in the White House in the 1990s.
There’s no telling where the Epstein story will take the country, but Democrats are apparently already girding for damage.
Pelosi’s daughter Christine said as much in a Twitter post published Sunday.
This Epstein case is horrific and the young women deserve justice. It is quite likely that some of our faves are implicated but we must follow the facts and let the chips fall where they may – whether on Republicans or Democrats. #WeSaidEnough #MeToo https://t.co/2mvskwQwW1
— Christine Pelosi (@sfpelosi) July 7, 2019
“It is quite likely that some of our faves are implicated but we must follow the facts and let the chips fall where they may – whether on Republicans or Democrats,” Pelosi wrote.
Since, in addition to being the House speaker’s daughter, Christine Pelosi is also a member of the Democratic National Committee, it’s a good bet that by “faves” she didn’t mean anyone in the Trump White House.
Or any Republican member of Congress.
So, at least one Pelosi in Democratic leadership thinks the fallout from the Epstein case is something for the party to worry about.
For all his faults – and they are legion – former President Clinton has never been accused of sex with a woman who was not legally capable of consenting to it.
Making his public statements about his travels with Epstein square with facts that have been reported about his presence on the “Lolita Express” would be a good way for Clinton to make sure it stays that way.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.