Virtually no one with a checkbook was turned away from Bill Clinton's fund-raising party--not convicted felons, not Buddhist monks bearing someone else's money, not even a Russian mobster. But few of them felt the need to be quite as discreet as Carl Lindner, the banana king who had a bundle to drop in the last election.

Lindner, the conservative tycoon from Cincinnati, Ohio, who heads Chiquita Brands, gives much more money to Republicans than Democrats. That helps explain why, when he needed a big favor from the Clinton Administration two years ago, he may have wanted to hide his footprints. Lindner...

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