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Clinton Insiders Fear Secret Service Records Could Damage Campaign

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Even as Hillary Clinton's operatives were dropping hints that Republicans would exploit Barack Obama's youthful drug use, some Clinton insiders privately worried about her own vulnerability because the Bush administration possesses detailed knowledge of her movements - and her husband's - over the past seven years.

Because of Sen. Clinton's unique status as the first former First Lady to run for President - and because her husband was succeeded by a Republican - she is the first candidate to have both her and her spouse be subject to regular, long-term surveillance by an Executive Branch agency controlled by the opposing political party.

Since they left the White House in 2001, Bill and Hillary Clinton have been under the protection of the Secret Service, formerly a branch of the Treasury Department and now part of the Homeland Security Department. Records are maintained showing where they go and whom they meet.

Homeland Security is under the control of Michael Chertoff, a longtime Clinton nemesis dating back to his work as a Republican lawyer on the Senate's Whitewater investigation in the 1990s. In 2003, Sen. Clinton cast the sole dissenting vote against Chertoff's nomination as a federal judge in protest against his abrasive conduct during the Whitewater inquiry.

Though Secret Service records are supposed to be closely held secrets, a source close to the Clintons told me that it is believed that senior Republicans have received regular briefings about movements of the Clintons that might prove embarrassing if released during the general election campaign.

Click here to read more about Hillary's potential vulnerability, and the tightrope her campaign walked attacking Obama last week, on Consortium News.