Local Reaction to Jones Case Mixed
Posted April 1, 1998
CHAPEL HILL — If you've been following the Paula Jones case since its filing three years ago, you may have been surprised over Wednesday's ruling that the case be thrown out. While some people say the decision means we'll never really hear Paula Jones' story, others say they're just happy it's over.
"Clearly this trial judge has treated this like an ordinary case," says UNC law professor Melissa Saunders, "a kind of case that is routinely washed out on summary judgement as this one was."
Saunders has been following the Clinton-Jones case with her class throughout the semester. She says she isn't surprised by the court decision. As far as the local political community, the Republicans say it's not a political issue.
"It's not something that we are going to talk about in those terms," says Richard Hudson of the Republican party. "But I think anytime we have a president who has to spend a lot of energy and time distracted, so to speak, then the country suffers."
Political director of the North Carolina Democratic party, Kevin Gwyn, says Democrats are pleased with the outcome. he also says "the public can focus on the work Clinton is doing for the country, instead of being preoccupied with the chaotic atmosphere surrounding the Paula Jones case."
Professor Saunders says a lot of people thought the judge would let it go before an actual jury instead of tossing the case out. She believes the judge should be commended for following normal practices and treating it like an ordinary case.
If Saunders is correct, this is probably the last we'll hear about the case. Photographer:John Cox