The Bond and Bad Blood Between Monica Lewinsky and Linda Tripp: Secret Tapes, Codenames and That Blue Dress

by 24USATVSept. 8, 2021, noon 30
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Tripp changed the course of American history when she secretly recorded her friend, former White House intern Lewinsky, in 1997

The Bond and Bad Blood Between Monica Lewinsky and Linda Tripp: Secret Tapes, Codenames and That Blue Dress

Tripp, played by Sarah Paulson in Impeachment, changed the course of American history when she secretly recorded her friend, Pentagon co-worker and former White House intern Lewinsky, as the latter detailed her affair with former President Bill Clinton in what she thought were private conversations

Tripp, in turn, met with literary agent Lucianne Goldberg about the conversations, in the hopes of using them as part of a future book (which never came to fruition). Goldberg encouraged her to record Lewinsky — and has insisted she did so in order to help Tripp protect herself from any claims that she was lying.

During their conversations, in which they referred to the president as "the big he" (or "the creep"), she also convinced her co-worker and purported friend to preserve a semen-stained blue dress she said she had worn with Clinton when they had sex.

There, FBI agents confronted the unsuspecting Lewinsky, igniting an impeachment investigation of Clinton hinging on the evidence provided by Tripp. That material, including the audio and the infamous blue dress, was used against the president and he was impeached by the House of Representatives. The Senate, however, acquitted him.

Speaking to Larry King in 2003, Tripp said she felt the country "needed to know" how the president was behind closed doors: "The arrogance — the reckless arrogance that was going on in the Oval Office."

When King pressed her on the secret recordings of someone who considered her a friend, she responded: "First of all, documenting the evidence was something that happened long after I knew Monica Lewinsky. And after she was informed repeatedly that I would not help President Clinton fix the court case."

When asked if she had anything to add during her testimony in front of a grand jury, Lewinsky said, "I'm really sorry for everything that's happened. And I hate Linda Tripp," according to The Washington Post.

What Became of Tripp

Her son-in-law Thomas Foley told The New York Post on at the time: "She fought on as hard as she could. I know all the press will focus on the other stuff, but she was a special person and a fantastic grandparent who was devoted to her family. People forget this part."

"No matter the past, upon hearing that Linda Tripp is very seriously ill, I hope for her recovery," Lewinsky wrote on Twitter. "I can't imagine how difficult this is for her family."

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