Entries in Affair (13)


David Petraeus Tells Friend He 'Screwed Up Royally'

DoD photo by Petty Officer William Selby, U.S. Navy(WASHINGTON) -- One of David Petraeus' closest friends says the former CIA director admitted that he "screwed up royally" by having an affair with his biographer Paula Broadwell.

Brig. Gen. James Shelton has been friends with Petraeus for more than three decades and reached out to him after he resigned from the CIA.  Shelton told ABC News that the former four-star general wrote him a letter recently confessing to the affair.

Petraeus, 60, writes in the letter, "Team Petraeus will survive. ... though [I] have obviously created enormous difficulty for us," according to Shelton.

A former spokesman for Petraeus told ABC News that fury was an inadequate description for Holly Petraeus after learning her husband of 38 years had an affair.

But in the letter, Petraeus writes that his wife is "…once again demonstrating how incredibly fortunate I was to marry her."

Shelton said he has shocked when news of the affair broke.  Shelton says he has never met Broadwell but talked to her on the phone as she worked on the Petraeus biography, All In.  Broadwell thanked Shelton in the book's acknowledgments as "being wonderfully helpful."

Shelton says he found Broadwell engaging.

"I don't think she wove a web around Dave and dragged him in, I don't think that at all.  I think it was mutual," Shelton told ABC News.

The disgraced general also stuck by his decision to step down as head of the CIA, writing, "I paid the price (appropriately) and I sought to do the right thing, at the end of the day."

Neither Broadwell nor Petraeus would comment when ABC News tried to reach them overnight.

However, there are many in Washington who now wonder if Shelton's talking about this letter is the beginning of a carefully choreographed campaign by Petraeus to rehabilitate his image.

Shelton says while he was disappointed in Petraeus' actions, he thinks it was a one-time mistake.

"I believe that Dave Petraeus was that kind of guy.  He wasn't looking for it, it happened," he said.

While it is unclear who may have initiated the affair, what is clear is the scope of their relationship.  An FBI investigation has uncovered hundreds if not thousands of emails exchanged between the two.

The 40-year-old author was stripped of her military security clearance after a federal probe alleged she was storing classified military material at her home.

The FBI found classified material on a computer voluntarily handed over by Broadwell earlier in the investigation.

Prosecutors will now have to determine how important the classified material is before making a final decision on how to proceed.  Authorities could decide to seek disciplinary action against her rather than pursue charges.

Since announcing his resignation from the CIA last month, Petraeus has kept a low profile, only appearing in closed door hearings before the House and Senate intelligence committees to testify about what he learned first-hand about the Sept. 11 attack in the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Petraeus Told Friends Affair With Paula Broadwell Began After He Left the Army

DoD photo by Cherie Cullen/Released(NEW YORK) -- Gen. David Petraeus told friends his affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, began after the four-star general left the army in August 2011, sources told ABC News.

Petraeus is said to have been the one to have broken off the extramarital affair.

The 60-year-old's storied career, first as the public face of two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and later as director of the CIA, came crashing down on Friday when he announced his resignation from the intelligence agency, citing the indiscretion.

"After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair. Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours," Petraeus said in a statement on Friday.

People close to the general had previously suspected Broadwell's feelings for him had crossed a professional line.

They found the biographer, who spent a year embedded with Petraeus in Afghanistan, to be embarassing and far too "gushy" about him. They said to one another they thought Broadwell "was in love with him," sources told ABC News.

The FBI stumbled upon the extramarital affair while probing a harassing email that had been sent to a woman in Florida. The email was traced to Broadwell's inbox, where investigators are said to have found intimate emails that indicated Petraeus was having an extramarital affair with his biographer.

Investigators uncovered no compromising of classified information or criminal activity, sources familiar with the probe said, adding that all that was found was a lot of "human drama."

Petraeus and his wife Holly, who have been married for more than 37 years, are said to be staying in their Arlington Home and are doing "OK."

"The women in the army are always the strong ones. Holly will survive," a friend of the couple said.

The timing of Petraeus' resignation, which came days before he was scheduled to testify to the House and Senate intelligence committees regarding the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, "was what it was," an official told ABC News, adding that the time had come to tie up any loose ends in the investigation and confront Petraeus.

The CIA director stepped down from his position as the head of the intelligence agency on Friday, acknowledging he had engaged in an extramarital affair. He did not provide any further details.

"Yesterday afternoon, I went to the White House and asked the president to be allowed, for personal reasons, to resign from my position as D/CIA," he said in a statement. "After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair. Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours. This afternoon, the president graciously accepted my resignation."

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper was made aware of the Petraeus situation on Tuesday evening around 5 p.m. by the FBI, according to a senior intelligence source.

After having several conversations with Petraeus that evening and the following day, Clapper advised Petraeus that the best thing to do would be for him to resign, the source said.

Clapper notified the White House the following afternoon that Petraeus was considering resigning, according to the source.

Petraeus then went to the White House Thursday and told the president he thought he should resign, and the following day the president accepted his resignation, the source said.

Clapper is not currently initiating an investigation into the matter, according to the source.

The news shocked officials in Washington. Petraeus was perhaps the military's most respected general of his generation. He is seen as a problem-solver, and was entrusted with key roles by two presidents from different parties.

Petraeus, then working as a general in Afghanistan, spent a year in close quarters with Broadwell, a 40-year-old married mother of two who embedded with him to write his biography.

In February, when promoting her book, "All In: The Education of General David Petraeus," the West Point and Harvard-educated Broadwell told ABC News' Christiane Amanpour she was able to learn more about what makes the four-star general tick.

"His father doled out what he called gruff love, so he was always working hard to keep his father happy and I think that's reflected in his personality now," she said. "It's interesting to apply that on every one of his assignments, even looking at now, he's trying to please this president."

Broadwell wrote a story that was published this week on Newsweek's website titled "General David Petraeus's Rules for Living." No. 5 is notable in light of the news about his extramarital affair.

"We all will make mistakes. The key is to recognize them and admit them, to learn from them, and to take off the rear-view mirrors -- drive on and avoid making them again," he said.

The departure of Petraeus will add another hole to Obama's leadership team, which is expected to lose some high-profile faces in the coming weeks and months.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is among the cabinet members who have said they will not stay in the administration for a second term. A hole at CIA will add yet another position that requires Senate confirmation to that list.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paula Broadwell, David Petraeus' Alleged Mistress, Embedded With Him for 1 Year in Afghanistan

DoD photo by Cherie Cullen/Released(NEW YORK) -- As a biographer to Gen. David Petraeus, Paula Broadwell enjoyed tremendous access to the general during the year they spent together in Afghanistan, finding out the idiosyncrasies that helped shaped the man who was the public face of the war.

"He was really motivated to please his father when he was younger," Broadwell told ABC News' Christiane Amanpour earlier this year. "His father doled out what he called gruff love, so he was always working hard to keep his father happy and I think that's reflected in his personality now."

It was clear in interviews Broadwell gave to promote her book, "All In: The Education of General David Petraeus" that she and the general shared a mutual trust. What remained unseen, however, was an extramarital affair that sources say was discovered by the FBI after intimate emails sent from the CIA director were found in Broadwell's email inbox.

By all accounts, Broadwell seemed to have it all.

The 40-year-old resides in Charlotte, N.C., with her husband, Dr. Scott Broadwell, who works as a radiologist, and their two young sons.

Growing up in Bismarck, N.D., Broadwell was the high school valedictorian and homecoming queen.

She went on to attend West Point, where she was ranked No. 1 in overall fitness in her class. She spent some time in the Black Ops and later earned post-graduate degrees from Harvard and King's College in London.

On Monday, just days before before Petraeus would step down from his post with the CIA, a story by Broadwell was published on Newsweek's website titled "General David Petraeus's Rules for Living." No. 5 is notable in light of the news about his extramarital affair.

"We all will make mistakes," he said. "The key is to recognize them and admit them, to learn from them, and to take off the rear-view mirrors -- drive on and avoid making them again.""

Petraeus resigned on Friday, citing personal reasons and an extramarital affair.

"Yesterday afternoon, I went to the White House and asked the president to be allowed, for personal reasons, to resign from my position as D/CIA," he said in a statement. "After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair. Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours. This afternoon, the president graciously accepted my resignation."


Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Cain Camp Targets Cellphone Records from 'Troubled' Affair Accuser

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- An attorney for Herman Cain has requested the full cellphone records and other documents from a Georgia woman who said she engaged in a 13-year extramarital affair with the Republican presidential candidate in part to "test her credibility" and determine if she was promised money for coming forward.

Cain's attorney, Lin Wood, told ABC News that Ginger White's decision to provide media outlets a redacted version of her cellphone records to back up her claims about the long-term affair "raises serious questions about White's credibility."

"White owes the public the whole truth," Wood said, "not just her selective version of what she wants to say or release as part of her media campaign against Mr. Cain."

In a letter sent Thursday to White's attorney and obtained by ABC News, Wood also requested a full record of calls, text messages and emails sent or received by White in the weeks leading up to her first interview with Fox News' Atlanta affiliate WAGA-TV, questioning whether there was a political or financial motive behind White's accusation.

Just hours after the letter was sent, Cain told New Hampshire's Union Leader newspaper that though he did provide financial support to White from time to time, his wife was not aware of any relationship between White and himself.

White's attorney, Edward Buckley, told ABC News he has "every expectation" that the documents produced by his client are accurate.  He also said there's no need to produce any cellphone records regarding White's communication with Cain because Cain should already have them.

"Mr. Cain has his cellphone records which would reflect any and all telephone calls and text messages between him and Ms. White," Buckley said.  "So I think that he should be encouraged to produce all those to show whatever he wants to show."

The cellphone records, reviewed by ABC News, show repeated contact between White and Cain at all hours of the day and night as recently as October and November.  Buckley said he would respond to Wood's letter privately and more records will likely be made available later.

After White's public accusation, Cain sent a message to his supporters denying the affair and calling White a "troubled" woman who is using "national media outlets to promulgate a fabricated, unsubstantiated story."

In an interview with ABC News' Good Morning America on Wednesday, White stuck to her story.

"I can't make this stuff up," she said.  "And frankly speaking, I wouldn't want to make this up."

White has previously been accused of fabricating information.  Kimberly Vay, who was once her partner in a fitness coaching business, filed and won a libel lawsuit against White after White sent a "defamatory" note to a master email list of the company's clients and to city officials.

Asked whether she considers White's accusations against Cain credible, Vay said, "When you see the details of my lawsuit...they will speak for themselves."

In another interview with WAGA, White confirmed the incident, saying, "I admit it.  Whatever happened with Kim and I happened."

White also has a history of financial trouble, with a threat of eviction for non-payment of rent just two weeks ago.

White told ABC News that she was never evicted, but admitted to financial difficulties.  She said that Cain has "consistently" given her money, but it was not "sex for cash."

Cain admitted he had helped White financially in an email to supporters.

"I thought Ms. White was a friend in need of a supportive hand to better her life," he wrote. "Ms. White has made it apparent that she was abusing the friendship."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Herman Cain to Supporters: ‘It Ain’t Over Till It’s Over, and It Ain’t Over’

Alex Wong/Getty Images(MANCHESTER, N.H.) -- As nearly 50 supporters squeezed into his small, six-room headquarters in New Hampshire, Herman Cain used the words of Yogi Berra on Wednesday to define the state of his campaign just two days after a woman named Ginger White came forward claiming to have engaged in a long-term affair with the presidential candidate.

“After that latest firestorm, there were some people that thought that I was finished, but I’m going to leave it with Yogi Berra’s comment: It ain’t over till it’s over, and it ain’t over yet,” Cain told supporters as they cheered him on.

Cain said his experience as a businessman has taught him the need to reassess a situation, giving only a timeline of the “next several days” until he makes a decision about how he will proceed with his campaign.

Cain told reporters in a media availability after the short speech that he is waiting to make his final decision about continuing with the presidential race until he sits down face to face with his wife on Friday to discuss the impact the latest allegations have had upon his family.

“Since I’ve been campaigning all week, I haven’t had an opportunity to sit down with her and walk through this with my wife and my family.  I will do that when I get back home on Friday,” said Cain.

In what became a heated exchange between a reporter and the candidate, Cain was asked if he had even discussed the accusations with his wife.

“You haven’t sat down and discussed Ginger White with your wife yet?” the reporter asked.

“I have discussed this with my wife many times since Monday.  You are making an accusation, quite frankly, that is not true,” Cain said.  “Now are you going to be contentious or do you want me to answer the question?  I have talked to my wife many times since Monday about this situation. … I have not talked to her face to face.  That’s what I said.  We have had many lengthy conversations. … This is another reason why that I am not going to make a decision until after we’ve talked face to face.”

Cain said campaign strategy, support from voters and fundraising are other factors he will reevaluate over the coming days.  The businessman said fundraising dropped when the latest accusation was made on Monday, but since “this woman who has made these accusations has basically started to contradict herself, our fundraising is starting to go back up.  It’s not up to the level of where it was, but a lot of people are saying -- you know what? -- they don’t believe it.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Herman Cain's Campaign Manager: ‘No Way He’s Dropping Out’

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Although Herman Cain told his senior staff Tuesday morning that he was “reassessing” his campaign’s livelihood in light of an accusation by an Atlanta woman of a 13-year extra-marital affair, Cain’s campaign manager, Mark Block, said in an interview with ABC News Tuesday night that there is “no way he’s dropping out.”

Block said the term “reassessment” was meant to imply a “strategic reassessment” and “not a reassessment of withdrawing” from the race.

Cain, said Block, will outline the specifics of that strategic reassessment during a campaign stop in Dayton, Ohio Wednesday.  In Ohio, Block said, Cain “will lay out his way forward.”

When pressed on whether Cain, under any circumstances, would drop out, Block replied that just two things would push him out: “Mrs. Cain, and if we show up to do events and no one is there.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Latest Herman Cain Accuser Not Surprised at Cain's Denial

Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty ImagesBREAKING NEWS UPDATE: Herman Cain told senior staff Tuesday morning that he is "reassessing" whether to stay in the race for the presidency and that he will make a final decision soon, ABC News has confirmed.

(ATLANTA) -- The Georgia woman who says she carried on a 13-year affair with Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said she is not surprised that Cain is denying the affair took place.

"I can't imagine him actually confirming," Ginger White told ABC News' Atlanta affiliate WSB-TV late Monday night.  "It's the name of the game I guess."

White came forward Monday evening in an interview with Fox's Atlanta affiliate WAGA-TV to claim that for more than a decade she and Cain carried on a lavish affair.  Cain and White spent many nights in a ritzy Atlanta hotel, he showered her with gifts and paid for her to travel to events where Cain was speaking, White said.

"It wasn't complicated.  I was aware that he was married.  And I was also aware that I was involved in a very inappropriate situation, relationship," White told WAGA.  "He made it very intriguing, very fun.  It was something that took me away from my humdrum life at the time."

White provided WAGA with documents, including cellphone records showing calls and texts in the early morning hours allegedly between the two, to support her claim.

But before WAGA could air their exclusive report, Herman Cain appeared on CNN Monday to deny the story ahead of time and say that while he considered White a friend, there was absolutely no sex involved.

"I acknowledge that I've known her for about that period of time," Cain told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.  "But the accusation that I had a 13-year affair with her, no."

Court documents obtained by ABC News show White, a single mother, has a long history of legal and financial problems, including a threatened eviction notice earlier this month.

"I don't think that makes me out to be a bad person.  It makes me out to be one of the millions of people right now trying to keep a roof over their head," White told WAGA.

White's accusation comes just two weeks after Cain's wife of 43 years, Gloria, made a rare public appearance to defend her husband in the wake of accusations of sexual misconduct by several other women.

"His conscience would bother him and he couldn't look me straight in the eye," Gloria Cain said.

Cain's attorney, Lin Wood, provided WAGA with a statement before the broadcast Monday saying White's claim "appears to be an accusation of private, alleged consensual conduct between adults -- a subject matter which is not a proper subject of inquiry by the media or the public."

"No individual, whether a private citizen, a candidate for public office or a public official, should be questioned about his or her private sexual life," Wood's statement said, according to WAGA.  That statement, apparently made before Cain's appearance on CNN, said the presidential candidate would not speak about the allegations.

In another statement, Cain's campaign called the accusations just another attempt to "derail the Cain Train."

"The Cain Campaign is not surprised that another female accuser has come forward due to the fact that earlier allegations were unable to force Herman Cain to drop his presidential bid to renew America," the campaign said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Herman Cain Denies New Affair Allegation

Alex Wong/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain is speaking out against another allegation of sexual misconduct, this time before the woman has been able to make the claim publicly.

There will soon be "another accusation that I had an affair with someone, a woman," Cain said on CNN Monday.

Cain said he expects a woman to accuse him of having a long-term affair with her. Cain told CNN's Wolf Blitzer he did know the woman for 13 years and considered her a friend, but emphatically denied any affair.

"I want to get out in front of [the story] because I have nothing to hide," Cain said. "I have done nothing wrong."

Cain said that after the report comes out, he and his attorney would respond more specifically.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


John Edwards' Legal Team Heads to Court Seeking Dismissal

Steve Exum/Getty Images(GREENSBORO, N.C.) -- From the moment the ink dried on the federal indictment of John Edwards, his lawyers have been waging an all-out assault on the government’s case against the disgraced former Democratic presidential candidate. Edwards stands accused of six felonies in connection with an alleged cover-up of his extramarital affair during the 2008 election campaign.

Standing outside the federal courthouse in Winston-Salem, N.C., last June, defense attorney Greg Craig pronounced: “This is an unprecedented prosecution. In the history of federal election campaign law, no one has ever been charged...with the claims that have been brought against Senator Edwards today.”

As Craig spoke out front, Edwards was being escorted around back into a small holding room, where he would experience the indignity of getting fingerprinted and photographed by U.S. Marshals.

“He has broken no law,” Craig concluded on the courthouse steps, “and we will defend this case vigorously.”

Moments later, Edwards entered not guilty pleas to all counts in the indictment.

Wednesday morning in Greensboro, N.C., Edwards’ legal team, now led by high-profile lawyer Abbe Lowell, will take those arguments and others before a federal judge, seeking dismissal of all the charges.  They’re challenging virtually every aspect of the indictment, including what Lowell has referred to as the government’s “radical theory,” that third-party payments to a candidate’s mistress could be considered campaign-related expenditures.

The government has charged Edwards with knowingly conspiring to accept more than $900,000 in illegal contributions from two wealthy donors in an effort to conceal his affair and support his pregnant mistress, Rielle Hunter, while he was pursuing the Democratic nomination for president.  Each of the six felony counts carries the potential for five years imprisonment.

The prosecutors contend that those payments violate federal election laws which regulate contributions intended to influence the outcome of an election.  Edwards’ lawyers have countered that the payments were gifts to assist Hunter and former Edwards’ aide Andrew Young, and therefore not subject to contribution limits. Young claimed Edwards urged him to claim the love child was actually his so that Edwards' campaign could continue; a charade Young kept up for some time before Edwards was forced to come clean.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Sarah Palin's Husband Slams Author's Claims about His Wife

Allison Shelley/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Todd Palin released a statement late Wednesday condemning claims author Joe McGinniss makes about former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in his upcoming book, The Rogue: Searching for the Real Sarah Palin.

“This is a man who has been relentlessly stalking my family to the point of moving in right next door to us to harass us and spy on us to satisfy his creepy obsession with my wife,” Todd Palin said via SarahPAC’s Rebecca Mansour.  “His book is full of disgusting lies, innuendo, and smears.  Even The New York Times called this book ‘dated, petty,’ and that it ‘chases caustic, unsubstantiated gossip.”

In his book, McGinniss claims that Palin used cocaine, had a one night stand with retired NBA player Glen Rice, and engaged in an extramarital affair.

Meanwhile, on Facebook Wednesday night, Sarah Palin condemned President Obama’s “crony capitalism” following his jobs speech.  She made no mention of McGinniss’ book.

“President Obama has his sights set on raising $1 billion for his reelection campaign,” she wrote.  “Raising that money won’t be easy.  But if you can hand out other people’s money to friends, it must get a whole lot easier.  This crony capitalism and government waste is at the heart of our economic problems.  It will destroy us if we don’t root it out.  It’s not just a Democrat problem or a Republican problem.  It’s a problem of our permanent political class.  This won’t stop until ‘we the people’ say enough is enough, and we retire the permanent political class that votes for this.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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