Friends of Bill, Indeed

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WASHINGTON: At least Bill Clinton can still rely on his friends on the Hill. Not only did the President have them out of their seats and cheering at Wednesday's meeting with the House Democratic Caucus, but according to TIME Washington correspondent John Dickerson, they're supportive behind closed doors, too. "It's not like the minute Clinton leaves the room, they're all grouching," says Dickerson. "This scandal isn't something their constituents worry about -- and until it is, they're not going to fret."

Special ReportWhich isn't to say everything's sweet between the Prez and his Democratic colleagues. After all, some believe, here is the man who lost them Congress in 1994 -- and by concentrating too much on his own re-election, failed to help win it back in 1996. "There is a residual angst," reports Dickerson, "a sort of low-grade feeling of being annoyed. But Clinton is still somebody the Democrats want campaigning for them." They'll be pleased, then, that the President promised to "raise issues, raise money and raise Cain" on behalf of the party this November. There's just one question: When Ken Starr's report explodes in Congress this fall, will it make Clinton damaged goods?