THE PRESIDENT'S SCANDALS
By Paul Sperry
A file drawer was ajar. Files had been rifled. Sensitive papers were missing.
The cleaning crew? Street burglars? Not at this address. Hall officed in the New Executive Office Building, which is part of the White House complex.
Security wasn't aware of any pattern of breaches there. Once the head of all White House computer operations, Hall was the only one with the key to her office, besides the security crew.
She asked her superiors about it, but they didn't seem concerned. So she reported the break-in to the Secret Service.
Not long after, someone entered her office again to snoop around -- this time during the week. Her office was unlocked at the time.
Hall, a seven-year Clinton White House veteran, last month blew the whistle on an alleged cover-up involving White House e-mails sought by Congress, the independent counsel and a government watchdog group.
WorldNetDaily has also learned that Hall's website was mysteriously knocked off line last year, just as she was huddling with Judicial Watch, a public-interest law firm that's suing the White House over various scandals.
The papers lifted from her office files relate to a computer project Hall was ordered to work on in 1994. She refused to help with the project after seeing that it involved keying in personal data about political donors. Officially named the White House Office Database, or WHODB, the project was also known among staffers as "Big Brother."
Hall, a career civil servant, warned the political appointees building the database that it violated federal laws against using government resources for fund-raising. For that, she was cut out of the loop and branded as "disloyal," memos from top Clinton aides show.
Then she was demoted from her post as chief of the Information Systems and Technology branch of the Executive Office of the President.
In 1996, Congress was investigating the database project and had subpoenaed the White House for relevant documents.
Also, Hall lost her authority over the White House computer system just before a supposed technical "glitch" stopped computers from archiving incoming e-mail to senior White House aides in the fall of 1996. The problem, which has denied investigators subpoenaed e-mail, lasted until late 1998.
"They were trying to move her out of the way," a Hall confidant said of the demotion. "It was intimidation."
When Hall told her supervisors of the office break-in, they brushed it aside, the source says, suggesting to her that someone might have gone in her office to look for "a wipe-off board."
"They didn't seem to mind that her office was broken into," the source said.
Repeated calls to the White House press office on the matter were not returned. Hall's supervisor at the time, Charles D. Benjamin, who has also left the White House, is overseas and could not be reached for comment.
Asked for a copy of Hall's complaint, a spokesman for the Secret Service's uniformed division says it will take awhile to search the unit's "central files," which are not computerized.
In another curious development, Hall's website was taken down without her consent about a month before she quit her White House job last year. One day it just disappeared into the ether.
The site, whodb-purge.org, was carried by Erols.com and registered with Network Solutions. The Erols.com webmaster could not explain to Hall what happened to it or even date when it went off the server.
Hall, who was told there was no back-up, decided not to rebuild the site, which documented her conflicts with Clinton appointees over the donor database.
Calls to Erols.com's webmaster at the time were not returned.
Hall hasn't had any luck trying to tell her story on the major TV networks, either.
CNN and ABC News interviewed her about the missing White House e-mail, only to later kill their stories, as WorldNetDaily first reported. Correspondent Bob Franken interviewed Hall for CNN.
The news organizations, which later confirmed WND's report, claimed her story lacked "corroborating evidence."
But in testimony before Congress last week, six computer contractors -- including the team leader -- all repeated Hall's charge that they were ordered by the White House to keep quiet about the missing e-mail.
It's not known if CNN's news division, which is run by President Clinton's some-time golfing partner Rick Kaplan, or ABC News, which employs former top Clinton aide George Stephanopoulos, will now air their interviews with Hall.