Linda Tripp, key figure in Bill Clinton's impeachment, dies from cancer

AFP
Washington, United States Published: Apr 09, 2020, 10:15 AM(IST)

Linda Tripp meets with reporters outside federal court in Washington DC. Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

The 70-year-old was a public affairs official of the US Department of Defense when her co-worker Lewinsky, who had served as a White House intern in the mid-1990s, told her she had secretly had sexual encounters with Clinton in the Oval Office.

Linda Tripp, whose secretly recorded phone conversations with Monica Lewinsky led to former US President Bill Clinton’s impeachment has died due to cancer.

Tripp’s lawyer, Joseph Murtha, confirmed Tripp’s death and US media cited family members saying she died after a short battle with pancreatic cancer.

Also read: I did to manage my anxieties: Bill Clinton on affair with Monica Lewinsky

The 70-year-old was a public affairs official of the US Department of Defense when her co-worker Lewinsky, who had served as a White House intern in the mid-1990s, told her she had secretly had sexual encounters with Clinton in the Oval Office.

Tripp then took the recordings to independent prosecutor Ken Starr, who used them to expand a separate investigation of Clinton.

Clinton at first denied the relationship, but Tripp's recordings and the blue dress she urged Lewinsky to save as an "insurance policy" blew the case open.

Also read: Bill Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinsky not an abuse of power: Hillary Clinton

In 1998 Clinton ultimately was impeached by the House of Representatives and placed on trial in the Senate for lying and obstruction of justice. He was acquitted.

Tripp said in a 1999 interview, on the day of Clinton's acquittal, that she had no regrets despite having received numerous threats.

She was later forced from her job, in which she was a political appointee, when Clinton left office in January 2001.

Also read: Monica Lewinsky offers 'Gentle Reminder' not to use her name in 1998 impeachment comparisons

After that, she moved to Middleburg, Virginia where she operated a Christmas store, The Christmas Sleigh, with her second husband Dieter Rausch. 

Lewinsky, who made clear at the time that she felt deeply betrayed, tweeted earlier Wednesday about Tripp after news emerged that she was severely ill.

"No matter the past, upon hearing that Linda Tripp is very seriously ill, I hope for her recovery. I can't imagine how difficult this is for her family."

The affair made Tripp a villain to Democrats and Clinton supporters, but a minor hero to Republicans.

Read in App