Author charges White House pressure

Author Kitty Kelley, whose controversial new book on the Bush family is making waves, says the White House is putting pressure on her and the U.S. media over the just published biography.

The Family: The Real Story of the Bush Dynasty—which alleges George W. Bush snorted cocaine at Camp David while his father, George H. Bush, was president, was an instant best-seller when it came out last week. It has drawn fierce condemnation from the president and his associates.

“I have had the pressure of the White House,” Kelley told a Washington conference, which was connected to the release of her book.

“It was published on Tuesday (Sept. 14), it was under embargo until that time, so there were no copies available. Days before publication, the White House issued a formal statement saying that the book was garbage, and nobody should read it,” Kelley said.

She also said the White House had called the president of NBC News to urge him not to invite her to discuss the book on the network. “Larry King did not extend an invitation. I have done his show for every book that I have ever written,” Kelley said of the CNN talk show host.

The book is 733 pages and is laden with Kelley’s trademark stew of scandal and sexual innuendo, and portrays a very unflattering picture of the Bush dynasty. The White House has condemned it as a politically motivated smear job before the Nov. 2 presidential election.

Kelley said preparing the book involved interviewing 988 people. “If it’s in the book, it’s corroborated,” she said. “There is a lot I left out of the book.”

The book quotes Sharon Bush, the former wife of Neil Bush–one of the president’s brothers—who reportedly confirmed the drug use. Sharon Bush has since denied she said that.

“I met Sharon Bush at a little restaurant. It was a four-hour lunch, and Sharon Bush talked about everything,” Kelley said. “She talked about her (ex) father-in-law’s infidelity, she talked about the mistresses of George H.W. Bush, she talked about her tormented relationship with the Bush family.

“I said: ‘Sharon, have you ever heard about George W. doing drugs at Camp David when his father was president? And she said: ‘Yes, many times.’”

Kelley said Sharon Bush’s publicist has “corroborated everything. But I am not really surprised that she is backing off because this is a very powerful family. Sharon said over lunch that she was afraid of the Bushes. I really do think they are the most powerful in America, the most powerful family in the world.”

Kelley flatly denied she had a political agenda, explaining that the book was begun in 2000. “I personally come from a large Republican family,” she said. “My father voted for both Bushes.”

Source: Agence France Presse

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