The Tell-Tale Tie?

While political pundits have been awaiting the DNA results from a stained dress that Monica Lewinsky offered as proof of her relationship with President Clinton, the latest stranger-than-fiction clue may damage the president more than any scientific evidence could. A commentary by CBS 'Face The Nation' Anchor Bob Schieffer.

We have all been looking for the smoking gun. It turns out we should have been looking and watching the president's ties.

As you may know by now, Monica Lewinsky told friends that she gave the president a tie and told him that when she saw him wearing it, she'd know she was still near his heart and lo and behold, there he was, wearing it at a televised ceremony in the Rose Garden on the very day she was testifying before the grand jury.

The independent counsel picked up on this quickly and prosecutors asked the president if he was trying to send her a signal. We're told the president couldn't remember where he got the tie, but denied he was trying to send a signal.

The president is clearly entering the stage of life where short-term memory is a problem, so maybe it's no more than that - no big deal. But it is the kind of goofy little deal that can sometimes crystalize in the public perspective and do in a politician.

I have no idea of the legal implications of any of this, but from what I'm hearing from friends across the country, it is the one thing in this sorry mess that everyone is laughing about.

No presidency has ever become stronger because people laughed at it and this is the presidency we're talking about, no matter how much it sounds like high school.

Written by Bob Schieffer
  • CBSNews.com staff CBSNews.com staff

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