Linda Tripp, Key Figure in Clinton Sex Scandal, Dies at 70

Elias Hubbard
April 10, 2020

A former White House and Pentagon employee, who secretly taped conversations with a young intern who had had an affair with then-US President Bill Clinton, leading to his impeachment, has died.

Her son, Ryan Tripp, also confirmed her death to the Washington Post, which reported that she was treated for breast cancer in the past.

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

A key figure in one of the biggest political scandals on the Nineties, Tripp was the subject of countless pop culture parodies, most infamously actor John Goodman's repeated caricature of her on Saturday Night Live alongside Molly Shannon's Monica Lewinsky.

After befriending White House intern Monica Lewinsky, Tripp secretly recorded conversations with Lewinsky regarding the intern's affair with President Clinton.

Tripp, a friend of Lewinsky's at the time, turned the 20 hours of tapes over to special prosecutor Kenneth Starr.

The sex scandal precipitated Mr Clinton's impeachment by the Republican-led House of Representatives in 1998, when he was found to have committed perjury for lying about the relationship.

Prior to Tripp's passing, Lewinsky expressed her sympathy for Tripp and her family in a Wednesday afternoon tweet.

Monica Lewinsky said this on learning Tripp was ill. "I don't know myself if I can survive this heartache", Linda's daughter Allison Tripp Foley wrote in a since-deleted Facebook post, per the New York Post.

"It wasn't a friendship", she said.

She argued that she reported the relationship out of "patriotic duty".

President Bill Clinton (L) and his wife Hillary listen to speakers at a Coalition for America's Children event at the White House in Washington on March 3, 1997.

"I couldn't believe - could he [Clinton] be that reckless?" she told the outlet.

In 2018, Tripp spoke at a whistleblower conference, saying that while she lost a lot due to the tribulations of the Lewinsky scandal, her oath was always to the institution of the presidency and not a particular politician.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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