Thompson Stirs Coffees

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WASHINGTON: What do the Texaco Tapes and the White House videos have in common? Answer: Paul Ginzburg, one of the country's leading experts in tape-tampering.

The New York-based Ginzburg was instrumental in the trial of top Texaco executives who were recorded making racist remarks about black colleagues. Now he's been drafted by the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, to find out if there's been any untoward editing of the Clinton coffee videos. "We think some of those tapes may have been cut off intentionally, altered in some way," said Indiana representative Dan Burton.

Of course, whatever Clinton may say on that missing audio with Huang isn't going to be as incriminating as the Texaco chiefs' words. Nor is Ginzburg likely to find anything on the scale of Nixon's missing seventeen minutes. But Fred Thompson's campaign finance investigation —which reconvenes Wednesday to kvetch about the klatches — is desperate. Not only have the 100 hours of tape run out of steam, but Democrats keep pulling out compromising pictures of Reagan and Dole, performing equally dubious fund-raising tricks. Thompson needs Ginzburg to work miracles — or at the least, raise his eyebrows a little.