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White House Blisters Abc Over Guest Ex-Fbi Agent On Talk Show Today To Discuss Unflattering Book

Sun., June 30, 1996

The White House assailed ABC News on Saturday for inviting former FBI agent Gary Aldrich to appear on a talk show today to talk about his book about working in the Clinton White House.

“This guy writes lies,” White House spokesman Mike McCurry said of Aldrich, who is scheduled to appear on “This Week With David Brinkley” along with White House senior adviser George Stephanopoulos.

McCurry branded the book by Aldrich “fallacious and totally inaccurate,” and said ABC News was making a journalistic error in giving someone he described as a “disgruntled former agent” a national platform.

“It is utterly inconceivable that a major news organization would do that,” McCurry said. “Our argument is that putting him on the air gives him a credibility and a platform.”

ABC officials defended the decision, saying Aldrich is a credible source to talk about White House security.

“Gary Aldrich was one of two FBI agents posted at the White House. He had direct knowledge of security at the White House and for that reason he is newsworthy,” ABC spokeswoman SuLin Cheng said Saturday.

Aldrich, a 30-year veteran who retired from the FBI last year, wrote “Unlimited Access: An FBI Agent Inside the Clinton White House,” which asserts, among other things, that the former head of the White House security office got his job because he was a friend of Hillary Rodham Clinton.

It also contains second- and third-hand accounts of alleged personal misconduct in the White House.

Asked at a news conference Saturday whether Hillary Clinton had approved the hiring of Craig Livingstone, the recently resigned head of the White House security office, the president replied: “The answers are ‘No,’ and ‘No.’ I know for a fact that is not true.”

The book is published by the conservative Regnery Publishing Inc. and is being promoted by a firm whose principals are Republican political operatives.


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