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Witness Lists Overlap for Whitewater and Waco Hearings

July 17, 1995

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Webster Hubbell, a longtime friend of President Clinton and his wife, will be the leadoff witness Tuesday at Senate Whitewater hearings. He’ll also testify in a congressional inquiry into the administration’s handling of the siege at Waco.

Hubbell went to Vincent Foster’s home the night of the deputy White House counsel’s death to console his family, and the Senate Whitewater committee has questioned Hubbell and other witnesses about what they saw and heard at the home, say sources familiar with the congressional investigation.

A Park Police officer has said she told White House official David Watkins at Foster’s home that she wanted Foster’s White House office secured. Watkins says he doesn’t recall the request.

That same night, three White House aides, including an assistant to Watkins, went into Foster’s White House office, searching, they said, for a suicide note. All three deny taking anything, but a Secret Service officer says he recalls seeing Hillary Rodham Clinton’s chief of staff, Margaret Williams, carrying papers, either out of Foster’s office or the suite where his office was located.

``Many questions remain unanswered″ and ``it’s our responsibility to gather the facts,″ committee Chairman Alfonse D’Amato, R-N.Y., said Sunday. D’Amato’s committee is looking into whether White House aides tampered with any of the papers found in Foster’s office, which included tax documents on the Clintons’ Whitewater real estate venture.

In the Waco inquiry, Rep. Bill Zeliff, R-N.H., plans to question Hubbell because he was the No. 3 official in the Justice Department on April 19, 1993, the day that FBI agents tried to force members of the Branch Davidian cult out of their compound by using tear gas. The compound burned to the ground, killing 81 Davidians.

John Magaw, director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, is also on the witness lists for both sets of hearings. Magaw was director of the Secret Service on July 20, 1993, the night Foster’s body was discovered in a park in the Virginia suburbs.

Other witnesses to be called before D’Amato’s Whitewater committee in the first week:

_Cheryl A. Braun, John Rolla and Robert Hines, of the U.S. Park Police.

_Sylvia M. Mathews, chief of staff, Treasury Department, and former special assistant to the president for economic policy.

_Mark D. Gearan, White House director of communications and strategic planning.

_Patsy Thomasson, Watkins’ aide who has said she went into Foster’s office the night of his death to look for a suicide note.

_Dennis S. Martin, Donald A. Flynn, Paul B. Imbordino and Henry P. O’Neill of the Secret Service. O’Neill is the guard who said he saw Williams with papers.