Who Hired Craig Livingstone?

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WASHINGTON, D.C.: In a move that sent the White House whirling into yet another spin control exercise, Congressman William Clinger divulged an FBI report late on Thursday night claiming that Hillary Clinton "highly recommended" Craig Livingstone, who engineered the collection of FBI files on hundreds of individuals, to head a White House personnel office. Protected from the Privacy Act on the House floor, Clinger read the report, which quoted a 1993 conversation between former White House counsel Bernard Nussbaum and an FBI agent performing a security check on Livingstone. According to the FBI document, Nussbaum told agent Dennis Sculimbrene that the First Lady was an old friend of Livingstone's mother and had recommended him for the job. The White House, which has denied that Livingstone had any high-level connections in the Administration, today released affidavits from Livingstone's mother, claiming that she does not know Mrs. Clinton, and from Nussbaum, who denied making the statement attributed to him in the FBI report. "The Republicans are just looking for a way to keep the issue in the headlines," says TIME's Eric Pooley. "They have yet to move beyond the tangential relationship and prove that the FBI material was gathered for some criminal use." Until now no one has made use of the confidential FBI files except Clinger, notes Pooley. "What is clear is that the FBI files fiasco was a monumental White House bungle and raises some very serious questions," says Pooley. "But Americans are tired of people raising serious questions. Until the finger can be pointed as high as Bill and Hillary, it won't be a big issue in the campaign." Anita Hamilton