Slander campaign against Anita Hill exposed
July 6, 2001 | Page 2
WASHINGTON--Lies and intimidation. Those were the tools that author David Brock now admits he used in his crusade to smear Anita Hill when she came forward with sexual harassment charges against Clarence Thomas during Thomas' confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court.
Brock's 1993 book The Real Anita Hill--in which he called Hill "a little bit nutty and a little bit slutty"--made him the darling of the right wing and a star writer for the conservative American Spectator magazine. But Brock is coming clean in a new book called Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative.
No depth was too low for right wingers to sink in the effort to win Thomas a place on the Supreme Court.
When Thomas' friend Kaye Savage was quoted speaking out against Thomas in the 1994 book Strange Justice, Brock was the loyal attack dog. He says that he was fed "unverified embarrassing personal information" from Savage's divorce proceedings, which he used to intimidate her into shutting up. Brock says that the information was provided by Thomas through an intermediary, Mark Paoletta, who is now the senior Republican counsel for the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
Of a review of Strange Justice he wrote at the time denying the authors' assertions that Thomas was a regular renter of X-rated movies, Brock now says, "When I wrote those words, I knew they were false."
Of course, Republicans are denying Brock's latest charges. Thomas' wife told reporters that Brock was "a tortured man." But Brock says, "If I made a mistake here, the mistake would be that I knew these facts five years ago and didn't disclose them."