3                         Press Conference
 5                     Thursday, October 9, 1997

 1                       P R O C E E D I N G S
 2              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Last Friday, I sent a
 3    letter to Chairman Hyde, responding to his and his
 4    colleagues' request that I apply for the appointment of an
 5    independent counsel.  Almost immediately, some people
 6    claimed that I had made a final decision with respect to
 7    certain fund-raising activities and use of government
 8    facilities by determining that at this time I did not have
 9    information that triggered the independent counsel statute
10    with respect to covered persons.  These claims are simply
11    not true.
12              This is an ongoing investigation.  It is being
13    conducted in a professional, sensible way, by building our
14    case from the ground up, by investigating and confronting
15    low-level targets and moving up the chain of those
16    involved to whomever is responsible.  And by building
17    cases that provide proof that meets the test of the law
18    and that will stand up in court.
19              I do not seek to create headlines or deal in
20    innuendo or mere speculation.  I want to make decisions
21    and build cases that stand the test of time and court
22    review.  And no pressure or harsh words or editorials will
23    change my focus.
24              There have been claims that we have somehow tied
25    investigators' hands or chosen not to pursue all available

 1    leads or spare high-level figures by not triggering the
 2    provisions of the independent counsel statute.  These
 3    claims are not true.  I will continue to review the
 4    evidence.  And if the information triggers the statute, I
 5    will do so as I have already done in this case.
 6              At the same time, it is our duty to carefully
 7    review all the information, and separate information from
 8    innuendo, and fact from speculation based on unreasonable
 9    deductions when determining whether to commence an inquiry
10    against a covered person.
11              More than 120 agents, attorneys and staff are
12    working full-time to do this investigation in the right
13    way.  No criminal case in this Department has more
14    resources.  More than a million pages of documents have
15    been obtained.  Hundreds of interviews have been
16    conducted.  We have an active Grand Jury investigation. 
17    And agents have been dispatched across the country to
18    track down leads.
19              When I say that I am determined to follow every
20    lead, I mean it.  But I do not mean to follow innuendo or
21    rank speculation.
22              Some have claimed that I have not vigorously
23    pursued evidence, by failing to secure production of White
24    House tapes.  These claims are not true.  As I have said
25    before,  we  have  an  active  Grand   Jury  investigation

 1    underway.  In general, the law relating to grand juries
 2    does not allow me to discuss Grand Jury subpoenas and
 3    their enforcement.  Thus, all I can say is that we sought
 4    the production of these tapes in an appropriate manner and
 5    are as disturbed as anyone about their delayed production.
 6              I cannot tell you everything that has gone on in
 7    the course of our investigation to date or everything we
 8    have done.  Because as I have told you on a number of
 9    occasions, prosecutors should not comment about pending
10    investigations.  But if I could, it would dispel so many
11    of the misunderstandings and so much of the misinformation
12    that has swirled around this investigation.  People have
13    alleged that we are reacting only to the press and to the
14    work of others.  But that is only because they cannot see
15    everything we are doing.
16              I am going to press on and investigate until we
17    find the truth.  I will close by saying this.  In my 4 and
18    a half years in Washington, I have asked for independent
19    counsels on several occasions, and referred additional
20    matters to them at least twice more.  On other occasions,
21    I have declined to do so.  Each time, I acted
22    deliberately, after thorough analysis.  Each time, I
23    worked with career prosecutors to separate the fact from
24    the hype.  And each time, my decision was based on the
25    facts and the law, and nothing else.

 1              No one can shout loud enough or write a headline
 2    big enough or use words shrill enough to keep me from
 3    doing what I think is the right thing on this
 4    investigation.
 5              Now, I will be happy to try to answer your
 6    questions.
 7              QUESTION:  General Reno, can you tell us, on
 8    Saturday, when you learned of the tapes, of the existence
 9    of the tapes, what was your reaction?
10              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I was mad.
11              QUESTION:  Mrs. Reno, based on what we know and
12    your investigators know now about those tapes, would they
13    have made any difference at all in the letter that you
14    sent to Chairman Hyde?
15              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Based on everything that
16    we know of those tapes at this point, it would not.
17              QUESTION:  Would it have changed the assessment
18    that none of the coffees were outside of the residence?
19              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Would you say that
20    again?
21              QUESTION:  Would it have -- my recollection from
22    your letter was that one of the reasons that the coffees
23    didn't trigger an independent counsel was that it was --
24    the investigators' understanding was that they were all at
25    the residence.  The tapes appear to show that at least one

 1    was at the Oval Office.
 2              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I think it would clearly
 3    indicate that there was one in the Oval Office.  But I do
 4    not -- I am told by the investigators that it would not
 5    change the determination in the letter.
 6              QUESTION:  With whom were you angry?
 7              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  What?
 8              QUESTION:  With whom were you mad?
 9              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I was very disturbed
10    that the tapes had not been produced in a current fashion
11    and that it had taken so long, after the production of the
12    tapes, to let us know.
13              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, can you make an assessment
14    just watching the tapes, or do you need to go back and
15    interview the people who attended those coffees?  When you
16    look at the tapes, you can see a lot of people fully aware
17    that a camera was present.
18              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, what we are doing
19    in the process, and I think it is important to realize,
20    that we are continuing to investigate the use of
21    facilities.  That does not mean that that triggers the
22    independent counsel statute.  And we are going to continue
23    to review all aspects of it.
24              If the evidence develops information that a
25    covered person may have committed a crime, we will trigger

 1    the statute.
 2              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, in addition to being mad,
 3    what are the options available to the government with
 4    regard to the nonproduction -- non-timely production of
 5    those materials?
 6              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, as I indicated
 7    previously, I really cannot comment on our -- the steps
 8    that we can take with respect to enforcement.
 9              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, in terms of mad, are you
10    mad at --
11              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Wait just a second.
12              QUESTION:  Are you considering any steps at this
13    time?
14              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, I would not
15    comment on the steps that we are taking.
16              QUESTION:  You said that you were mad about the
17    delay.  Are you also mad that the White House counsel,
18    Mr. Ruff, failed to inform you about the existence of the
19    tapes when you met with him last Thursday?
20              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I think it is important
21    in this whole process that there be early communication. 
22    Processes have been set up in the White House, and I think
23    Mr. Ruff had relied on those and not realized that the
24    information had not been provided.
25              QUESTION:  Do you believe the  explanation about

 1    their not being able to find the tapes or not being able
 2    to produce them?  Do you believe that it is further
 3    necessary to investigate what may have been deleted or
 4    what may still be withheld?
 5              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I would not comment.
 6              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, your statement this morning
 7    was extremely strong.  Now, it is no secret to the
 8    American people that you are taking on this daily
 9    criticism -- or almost hourly criticism -- from Republican
10    leaders in Congress.  Is your statement to us not only to
11    editorial writers, but to Republican leaders in Congress?
12              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  My statement really is
13    addressed to the American people, because I think they are
14    the people that count in this whole equation.  I think
15    they have got to understand what is being done.  I think
16    they share -- and there is an innate sense of justice in
17    the American people -- that share a feeling:  Don't just
18    make allegations without having foundation.  Don't take
19    action without foundation when you conduct criminal
20    investigations, when you institute criminal processes. 
21    Make sure you know what you are doing.
22              And I think it is important for us all -- people
23    have reminded me -- my sister reminded me last night that
24    what we are seeing is not anything really new.  She had
25    apparently  read some recent  history of Thomas Jefferson,

 1    and it suggested that he had some of the same comments
 2    directed at him.  And I think it is important that we
 3    understand this in the context of history and that we do
 4    everything we can to let the American people know what the
 5    process is and what we are trying to do.
 6              One of the frustrations, however, that a
 7    prosecutor has and that an investigator has is that while
 8    the investigation is underway, while a Grand Jury
 9    investigation is underway, you cannot discuss the details
10    of the investigation.  There may be some that think we
11    should.  But I think the American people would rather have
12    their investigations conducted in a solid, professional
13    way -- not in the headlines, but in a thorough, methodical
14    way, that builds the evidence that stands up in court.
15              Because one of the things I know the American
16    people do not like is investigations that lead to
17    prosecutions, that lead to convictions, that get reversed
18    on appeal.  And we do not want that to happen.
19              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, is it a problem, though
20    that -- (off microphone) -- and that it really does not
21    matter what you say -- (off microphone) --
22              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  One of the things that I
23    do not pay much attention to as well as editorial writers
24    is polls.  Because one of the things that I have learned
25    is that the questions posed in polls sometimes confuse the

 1    situation.  And what I have got to do is do the best that
 2    I can; let the review of the investigation, when it is
 3    concluded -- let people be the judge of what we did.  And
 4    I am willing to subject myself to that scrutiny.
 5              Judging by the comments that I am receiving --
 6    and they are anecdotal and they certainly do not represent
 7    all the American people -- people want it done right. 
 8    They do not want it done based on polls.  They do not want
 9    it done based on speculation.  They do not want it done in
10    dribs and drabs and dripples here.  They want it done
11    right.  And we are going to try to do it right.
12              QUESTION:  Are you getting a lot of mail from
13    the public on this?
14              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I have not checked to
15    see.
16              (Laughter.)
17              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, what was the sense that
18    Chairman Hyde -- (off microphone) -- thinking about
19    talking?  You made the point that they -- (off
20    microphone).  You made the point -- (off microphone) -- it
21    certainly had been shown that they had calls to raise hard
22    money and that hard money was in fact raised there.  So is
23    one reason now why the coffees appear still to be legal in
24    your mind -- (off microphone) -- is the fact that -- (off
25    microphone)?

 1              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Either solicited or
 2    received is the language of the statute.  And it is very
 3    specific.
 4              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, could you tell us about --
 5    (off microphone) -- from the FBI -- (off microphone) --
 6    essentially end your investigation?
 7              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  What I had indicated
 8    when we announced the addition of people to the task force
 9    is that in any investigation there is a tension oftentimes
10    between investigators and prosecutors -- one wanting to do
11    one thing, one wanting to do another.  And I think that
12    tension can be healthy.  We just had a meeting
13    yesterday -- our regular meeting with the FBI and the
14    prosecutorial -- with Chuck Lavella.  And I am convinced
15    that, judging from their reaction, their comment, there is
16    a real spirit of teamwork now.  And I feel very gratified
17    by that.
18              QUESTION:  Have you talked to Judge Green about
19    these problems?
20              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Judge Green and I are in
21    regular communication on this effort.
22              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, in your opening comment,
23    you mentioned the Grand Jury process in regards to the
24    production of the tapes, and subsequently, in response to
25    a question, you said there  will be steps you are  taking.

 1    You are leaving the clear impression that production of
 2    the tapes -- (off microphone) -- criminal investigation. 
 3    Is that the inference we should draw from your statement?
 4              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I would not comment.
 5              QUESTION:  It is just that we have some
 6    clarity -- (off microphone) -- you had taken certain steps
 7    -- (off microphone) -- Grand Jury process --
 8              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I mention Grand Jury
 9    process as a general statement, pointing out that I could
10    not comment on subpoenas or enforcement.
11              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, you say that you want the
12    American people to know -- (off microphone) -- but, in
13    fact, the American people, and reporters, are in the dark
14    on -- (off microphone).  One of the -- (off microphone) --
15    the Justice Department released, 2 weeks ago, an FBI
16    report showing that the Justice Department had
17    information -- (off microphone) -- technology and about
18    unlawful disposal of genetic materials.  And yet, there
19    were -- (off microphone) -- very narrow questions -- (off
20    microphone).  This indicates to me the Justice Department
21    did know about it.
22              And so my question is, specifically on this
23    case, is there any kind of investigation into this?  Or is
24    the investigation -- (off microphone)?
25              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I  will be happy to have

 1    Bert give you any information that he can, consistent with
 2    the matter as it is pending.
 3              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, there have also been
 4    renewed suggestions --  I guess is the best way to put
 5    it -- that one way for this to be resolved would be,
 6    rather than to appoint an independent counsel, just
 7    simply -- (off microphone) -- this all to a special
 8    prosecutor.  Is that anything you are still thinking
 9    about?
10              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I always try to listen
11    to suggestions as to what we might do.  As I have pointed
12    out previously, when I used that provision previously and,
13    myself, appointed the special counsel, as opposed to
14    applying to the special division of the court to appoint
15    the independent counsel, the special counsel was
16    criticized for not being independent because I had
17    appointed him.  But as I pointed out to you last week,
18    since I am the only one that can remove an independent
19    counsel appointed by the court, that question still arises
20    as well.
21              Again, what I am trying to do is look at the
22    evidence in the law and do it the right way.
23              QUESTION:  Would it be fair to say that the
24    possibility of a special prosecutor, as opposed to an
25    independent counsel, is not a live option?

 1              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I do not foreclose
 2    anything in the course of the investigation, because what
 3    I want to try to do is make sure people understand I am
 4    not shutting doors, I am not saying this investigation is
 5    concluded or this aspect of the investigation is
 6    concluded.  I am going to continue to try to conduct this
 7    investigation in an orderly way and see where it takes us.
 8              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, you say that you always
 9    listen to suggestions.  There have been some substantial
10    suggestions that you resign.
11              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I listen to those.
12              (Laughter.)
13              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I listen to those.
14              QUESTION:  When you talk to your sister down in
15    Florida, and she says, Janet, come on back, you know,
16    bring your boat and let's just, you know, kind of tool
17    around the Everglades here.  Do you think about that?
18              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Well, one of the things
19    that I think about is -- what she pointed out to me was,
20    when I said, when I come home, I will not have the Potomac
21    to try my hand on the rapids.  And she said, I have got a
22    new deal for you.  She said, I took my boat out into the
23    ocean and surfed it in; and it was a thrilling experience,
24    and you will like that a lot, too.
25              QUESTION:  There you are.

 1              QUESTION:  Amen.
 2              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Wait for Thanksgiving.
 3              (Laughter.)
 4              QUESTION:  How much of your statement this
 5    morning was inspired by the Republican criticism -- (off
 6    microphone)?  Are you trying to send them a message by
 7    making this statement this morning?
 8              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  No, I am trying to talk
 9    to the American people.  And I will welcome the
10    opportunity next week to talk to the members of the House
11    judiciary committee.
12              QUESTION:  Are you as mad at the congressional
13    committees as you are at the White House?
14              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I do not get mad at
15    people for saying mean things.  I just try to mosey on and
16    do it right.
17              QUESTION:  Can you tell us a little more
18    about --
19              QUESTION:  How significant is it that one of the
20    Republicans did appear -- (off microphone) --
21              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  The issue is whether
22    there was a solicitation or receipt of a contribution. 
23    And that is the key to it.  And that is what we will
24    continue to review.
25              QUESTION:  You seem to  be really narrowing down

 1    your view of that; that it is the law that prohibits
 2    solicitation and receiving of contributions.  Have you
 3    determined now that, number one, the act has got to take
 4    place on the premises, so that it is a fundraiser and
 5    not -- (off microphone) -- number one; and, number two,
 6    have you determined whether soliciting or receiving on the
 7    phone is illegal?
 8              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, the second issue
 9    is under review at this -- and the first issue, my
10    recollection is that there is -- there was a case pending
11    and the question arose with respect to President Carter,
12    as to whether there was a solicitation.  It did not, I
13    think, ultimately address the place in the White House,
14    and that that might still be a consideration.  But I would
15    ask Bert to confirm that for you.
16              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, why wasn't there more of a
17    push or a demand from the Department, from the White
18    House, to produce the Locket tapes?  Locket has been
19    around for 40 or 50 years, or whatever, and everyone knows
20    that these types of tapes are available.  Why wasn't there
21    more of a push in the Department to get those tapes
22    earlier?
23              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, I would not
24    comment about the enforcement process.
25              QUESTION:  Did you feel like you were being --

 1              QUESTION:  (Off microphone) -- are you talking
 2    now about the application of 607, as far as solicitation
 3    and receiving?  I just want to be sure I understood your
 4    language.
 5              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  You have to have -- let
 6    me have Bert, so that I do not misquote the statute --
 7    give you the actual language.
 8              QUESTION:  (Off microphone) -- would like at the
 9    specific question -- (off microphone) --
10              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, let me have Bert
11    give you the specifics so that I do not misstate it.
12              QUESTION:  Where do you stand on a decision for
13    next week on whether you need to open a preliminary
14    investigation of the President's phone calls?
15              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  That is pending.
16              QUESTION:  Have you received any
17    recommendations, either verbally or in writing, from your
18    staff on which ways to go?
19              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  No, I have not.
20              QUESTION:  Could you tell us a little more about
21    why you were -- what made you mad.  Did you feel you were
22    being deceived or manipulated or -- in your own words?
23              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  When you have something
24    like this, when you have a situation where the White House
25    has   recognized  the   responsibility   to  produce   the

 1    documents, it is very, very frustrating to have them
 2    produced in such a delayed fashion.  And I also thought
 3    that we should have been told immediately, as soon as they
 4    were found.
 5              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, given the belated
 6    production of the tapes, is your letter to Chairman
 7    Hyde -- (off microphone) -- is your letter to Chairman
 8    Hyde now -- (off microphone)?
 9              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  No.  But as we have told
10    Chairman Hyde in the letter, we will continue to review
11    all the information, to see if there is any information in
12    the course of this investigation that triggers the
13    statute, and we will trigger it.
14              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, were you informed about the
15    case before -- (off microphone)?
16              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I do not know what the
17    timing of the release to the media was.  I learned about
18    it Saturday.
19              QUESTION:  Did you realize you were kind of left
20    out of the loop -- (off microphone)?
21              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I believe that we were
22    not told in a timely fashion.
23              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno -- (off microphone) --
24              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  It has not triggered a
25    new 30-day.  Again, we will continue to review all aspects

 1    of the matter.  And if it does, if there is information
 2    that is developed, we will trigger it.
 3              QUESTION:  (Off microphone)?
 4              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  No, I have not.
 5              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, one of the criticisms from
 6    the Hill yesterday was -- that was directed at you -- (off
 7    microphone) -- said that you had been up to testify and
 8    you had said that no stone was left unturned, and now,
 9    here it comes that there were these tapes.  Is it a fair
10    criticism of the task force that the task force did not
11    know about the tapes?
12              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I do not think that that
13    is a fair criticism at all.  And as I have indicated to
14    you, I cannot discuss the processes.  And that again is
15    one of the frustrations, if we are to conduct this
16    investigation according to law and in an appropriate way,
17    there is going to be a lot that we cannot talk about in
18    terms of what we have done in the investigation, in all
19    aspects of it.
20              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, Chairman Burton has -- (off
21    microphone).  What is your reaction to that?  What is the
22    Justice Department's reaction to that?
23              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  We are working with the
24    chairman to see just how we can accommodate the oversight
25    interests of Congress while, at the same time, considering

 1    the interests of the Department of Justice.
 2              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, if we can get back to the
 3    independent counsel statute for a moment.  Presumably your
 4    critics on the Hill read the statute, and voted for it or
 5    against it back in 1994.  In your opinion, is there any
 6    way, given what you know now and given the elements of the
 7    statute, is there any way that you could seek the
 8    appointment of an independent counsel?
 9              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  My understanding is
10    that -- if you are asking about -- are you distinguishing
11    between the special counsel and the independent counsel?
12              QUESTION:  Yes.
13              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  My understanding is that
14    I still have available the opportunity to appoint, myself,
15    a special counsel.
16              QUESTION:  But do you have a legal right now,
17    under the independent counsel law, to go the special
18    division and ask for an independent counsel?
19              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  There are several issues
20    involved.  One, is there a covered person?  And do I have
21    information on a covered person that would trigger the
22    statute?
23              And my conclusion to date is that we do not, but
24    that we will continue to review it and, if information is
25    developed, we will appropriately trigger the statute.

 1              With respect to non-covered persons, if there is
 2    information with respect to a non-covered person that
 3    would create an actual conflict of interest, that would
 4    also trigger the statute.  And I have concluded that that
 5    does not exist at this point.
 6              QUESTION:  So your answer, under the -- given
 7    the facts of your investigation so far and the facts of
 8    the law itself, you cannot go to the special division and
 9    ask for an independent counsel?
10              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  That is what I have
11    concluded to date.  Now, just to be the devil's advocate,
12    others would say, well, you really do have an actual
13    conflict of interest.  I have carefully reviewed it,
14    because what the statute, in effect, does is create the
15    categories where the conflict exists, with the President,
16    for example, the Vice President, and they are the covered
17    people.  And if the evidence is triggered, it is assumed I
18    have a conflict and the statute is triggered.
19              I do not feel, to date, that I have a
20    conflict -- an actual conflict of interest with respect to
21    any other person for whom there may be specific or
22    credible evidence.
23              QUESTION:  Then are you being urged to break the
24    law to immediately seek an independent counsel from the
25    special division?

 1              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I think Chairman Hyde
 2    and his colleagues have a different understanding of the
 3    law.  I would never suggest that they are urging me to
 4    break the law.
 5              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, how do you -- (off
 6    microphone) -- about the cooperation that you have gotten
 7    from the White House -- (off microphone) -- in response to
 8    subpoenas and so forth, in addition to this -- (off
 9    microphone) -- issue?
10              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I have had no
11    information that would indicate that there has not been
12    good cooperation prior to this.
13              QUESTION:  But this goes back to Bernie
14    Nussbaum's time in the White House Counsel's Office.  I
15    mean, there seem to be repeated episodes where you have a
16    problem with someone in the White House Counsel's Office
17    not providing you with full information.  Why is it that
18    you cannot settle these problems with this White House?
19              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, what we are doing
20    is taking steps to see what we can do to make sure it
21    never happens again.  Otherwise, I cannot discuss with you
22    the process.
23              QUESTION:  Are you satisfied with the Ruff
24    explanation?  You seem to be saying that -- (off
25    microphone)?

 1              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, I would not
 2    comment with respect to -- because there are a number of
 3    issues, in addition to Mr. Ruff's explanation, and I would
 4    not comment.
 5              QUESTION:  (Off microphone) -- the FBI about
 6    the -- (off microphone) --
 7              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I have understood that
 8    the FBI has met with the families and that Director Freeh
 9    has initiated a review to make sure that something like
10    that does not happen again.
11              QUESTION:  Do you know what the status of the
12    investigation is?
13              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  No, I do not.  I would
14    suggest you check with the FBI on that.
15              QUESTION:  Does it concern you -- (off
16    microphone) --
17              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I think it is important
18    in any situation like that, that there be an immediate
19    response, that there be a follow-up, and that we review it
20    to see why it happened, and take steps to see that it does
21    not happen again.
22              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, there is a book out -- just
23    out -- that reports that Lyndon Johnson had -- (off
24    microphone).  Have your guys checked the White House to
25    see if President Clinton has a similar system?

 1              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I would not comment
 2    concerning the efforts in the investigation.
 3              QUESTION:  Have you inquired personally with
 4    members of the task force and asked if any of them thought
 5    about tapes and asked the White House, and who in the
 6    White House they may have asked about it?
 7              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, I would not
 8    comment.
 9              QUESTION:  (Off microphone) -- soft money --
10    (off microphone) -- that 441(e) does not apply to soft
11    money.  I am wondering about the application of 441 --
12    (off microphone) -- to soft money.  Is it the position of
13    the Department that the restrictions on -- (off
14    microphone) -- contributions are or are not applicable?
15              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Again, I would have Bert
16    give you whatever we can appropriately comment on.
17              QUESTION:  (Off microphone) -- White House --
18              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  Has it what?
19              QUESTION:  (Off microphone) -- between the
20    Justice Department and the White House --
21              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I do not know quite how
22    you mean the term "strained."  I think any time somebody
23    gets upset and mad at what happened, there perhaps is a
24    strain.
25              QUESTION:   Have you  talked with  the President

 1    about that?
 2              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  No.
 3              QUESTION:  Has he apologized to you?
 4              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  No.
 5              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, some of the audio on the
 6    videotapes is a little hard to hear.  Is the FBI -- and
 7    maybe they have already or are they planning to enhance
 8    the audio?
 9              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I would not comment.
10              QUESTION:  Ms. Reno, why have you decided not to
11    talk to the President on this?
12              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I talked to Mr. Ruff,
13    who was response.
14              QUESTION:  But given the fact that he does
15    not -- (off microphone) -- chief law enforcement officer,
16    what about talking directly to the President?
17              ATTORNEY GENERAL RENO:  I talk to Mr. Ruff.
18              Thank you.
19              VOICE:  Thank you very much, Mrs. Reno.
20              (Whereupon, the press conference concluded.)