Phone Talk

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WASHINGTON, D.C.: Reports that President Clinton raised $500,000 making phone calls have provided further embarrassment for the White House but still no smoking gun, says TIME's Michael Weisskopf. "We still don't know the location of his calls," Weisskopf points out. "This doesn't really constitute evidence." The note, written by aide David Strauss in 1994, refers to 15 to 20 calls made by Clinton to key party donors, as well as calls made by Hillary Clinton and Vice President Al Gore, anonymous White House officials say. The White House responded to the note Thursday by repeating the President's previous assertions that he does not recall making telephone solicitations from the executive mansion, but cannot rule out the possibility. In the meantime, until a clarification of the existing law comes down the pipe, the White House appears content to play legal hopscotch. While White House counsel reportedly advised employees not to make any phone solicitations from federal property, Gore has said he understood they were legal if made with a political credit card.