WASHINGTON – The National Archives said it plans to release 2,000 pages of documents from former President Bill Clinton's administration on Friday, covering a wide range of topics including Vice President Al Gore's 2000 campaign, gays in the military and the Supreme Court nominations of Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer.
The papers have been closely watched this spring as former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton considers a second presidential campaign. The former first lady's new book on her State Department years, "Hard Choices," will be released Tuesday.
More than 15,000 pages of records from the Clinton White House have been distributed since February, offering details into the administration's unsuccessful attempt to overhaul the health care system, how it responded to GOP victories in the 1994 elections and how the former first lady's aides sought to shape her public image.
Friday's records could offer more insight into Clinton's decisions during the 1990s.
Gore's presidential campaign dominated the final year of the administration — including a lengthy recount saga in Florida — and he ultimately lost to George W. Bush despite winning the popular vote. Clinton's administration created the controversial "don't ask, don't tell" military policy that addressed gays serving in the armed services, and it dealt with two Supreme Court vacancies during his first term.
Another topic will involve records related to the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Congress passed the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992, which established an assassination records review board during Clinton's tenure to carry out release of records.
Other topics will include the administration's handling of international crises in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia; its response to terrorism; the Oklahoma City bombing and efforts to spread democratic reform in Cuba.
The memos, drafts of speeches and other papers are being disseminated through the Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas.
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