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Morris Refuses Comment on Sex Scandal

From Times Wire Services

Declaring that he is in love with his wife, former Clinton political advisor Dick Morris met briefly with reporters Friday but steadfastly refused comment on the sex scandal that forced him to resign.

Morris, President Clinton’s top political advisor, resigned Thursday after a tabloid reported that he had a relationship with a prostitute and allowed her to eavesdrop on calls to the White House.

“I do not want to dignify yellow journalism with a comment,” Morris said Friday outside his home.

Morris and his wife, attorney Eileen McGann, greeted the press with their arms around each other as they stood in their yard with their dog in this affluent town of about 8,000 about 50 miles northeast of New York City.

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The couple said they decided to meet with reporters after they saw photographers trying to shoot pictures of them inside the house from a nearby nature preserve.

“We would like some privacy,” McGann said. “It’s a time we want to be together with our family . . . and our dog.” The Morrises’ retriever, Dizzy, appeared with them before reporters.

When asked how he was holding up, Morris said: “I have my wife, and we’re in love.”

Morris, 48, told reporters that he had already issued a statement and would not be saying anything else.

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Morris quit his campaign post after allegations of a yearlong affair with Sherry Rowlands of Lake Ridge, Va. The relationship was disclosed in lurid detail after Rowlands sold her story to the supermarket tabloid the Star.

The article, due on newsstands next week, includes photos of the pair taken after Rowlands led Morris onto the balcony of his hotel suite. The story was picked up Thursday by the New York Post.

In Cape Girardeau, Mo., Clinton, his wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Vice President Al Gore telephoned Morris, “just to check on a friend going through an ordeal,” White House Press Secretary Mike McCurry said Friday.

Meanwhile, the Washington Post reported that Clinton-Gore campaign officials will examine thousands of dollars of expense account payments to Morris to ensure that the campaign, and taxpayers, didn’t pay any expenses related to an affair.

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Campaign general counsel Lyn Utrecht told the Post she doesn’t think the review will find anything amiss because the campaign has strict rules on what it will reimburse.

Campaign records show the Clinton-Gore ’96 Primary Committee Inc. paid Morris $231,048 in consulting fees and expenses from April 1995 through this July. Nearly $27,000 of this was listed as hotel or travel expenses.


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