"BILL Clinton has delivered an extraordinary blast at America's top judge, William Rehnquist, and an uncharacteristically bitter attack on Republican presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush."
"Speaking before his recent health scare, the former president accused Rehnquist, the Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court, of deliberately politicising the system of appointing independent investigators, leading to years of relentless, politically motivated inquiries into his presidency."
"In an interview with The Weekend Australian, Clinton dropped the affection with which he usually discusses Reagan and the civility he affords the current President to accuse both men of deliberately using racist electoral appeals to win the White House."
"Clinton said Rehnquist, Reagan and Bush were part of a far-Right branch of the Republican Party made up of the "spiritual heirs" of white southern racists, who still used the tactics of personal destruction employed by racists in their campaign to block civil rights for blacks."
"He accused Rehnquist of deliberately appointing a highly partisan Republican, David Sentelle, in 1994 to chair a three-member panel of judges empowered to appoint special counsels to conduct inquiries into presidents."
"Sentelle's panel sacked Robert Fiske, the counsel investigating allegations against Clinton, and replaced him with the more partisan Republican Ken Starr."
"Starr, who pursued dozens of allegations against Clinton before eventually catching him out lying to cover up his sexual liaisons with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, was "an ultra-conservative" who abused his position and should never have been appointed, Clinton said."
""Rehnquist could not have been unmindful of what he was doing," Clinton stressed. "But you know, Rehnquist is a very partisan Republican. Before he went on the Supreme Court he had been part of voter challenges to (black) minority voters in Arizona."
""When he was a clerk on the Supreme Court he argued to his justice that the Supreme Court did not need to overturn the doctrine of 'separate but equal' and could keep basically supporting legalised racial segregation in America."
""That is just his philosophy, it is what he believes.""