Woman who revealed Clinton-Lewinsky scandal dies

An American civil servant whose disclosure of an affair between Bill Clinton and a White House intern nearly brought down his presidency has died.

Linda Tripp, 70, passed away after suffering from pancreatic cancer, her family told US media on Wednesday.

Recordings Ms Tripp made of her conversations with Monica Lewinsky became central to the 1998 impeachment trial of then President Clinton.

She was variously praised as a whistle-blower and denounced as a partisan.

The former civil servant, who worked at the Pentagon and had a friendship with Ms Lewinsky despite their 24-year age difference, learnt that the younger woman had had a sexual relationship with the president and began secretly recording their conversations in 1997.

Ms Tripp turned the tapes over to Kenneth Starr, the special prosecutor leading a broad investigation into the Clinton administration.

Ms Tripp also disclosed that Ms Lewinsky owned a blue dress that had been allegedly soiled by the president’s semen – an infamously prurient detail which stuck in the public imagination.

The sex scandal precipitated Mr Clinton’s impeachment by the Republican-led House of Representatives in 1998, when he was found to have committed perjury for lying about the relationship.

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