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Questions, Answers (cont.)

Posted: Tuesday January 8, 2008 12:24AM; Updated: Tuesday January 8, 2008 3:47PM

Question Raised: But why didn't Clemens come out with a denial as soon as the report was made public?

Answer: Hardin said that he advised Clemens not to make public statements until his legal team could adequately acquaint itself both with Clemens himself, who was a new client, and with the Mitchell Report. "I didn't know Roger from Adam before this," Hardin said, "I didn't know if he was telling the truth ... after spending three weeks with him, I believe he's telling the truth."

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Question Raised: What do McNamee's lawyers make of the fact that he spoke with Hardin's investigators?

Answer: "It was incredibly foolhardy of Brian to have spoken to them," said Richard D. Emery, one of McNamee's attorneys. The quote is "taken out of context. Brian is trying to be conciliatory to Clemens." As far as the conduct of prosecutors in their interviews with McNamee, Emery reiterated that Earl Ward was a witness to the interviews, and said that prosecutors "acted completely professionally throughout."

The Clemens/McNamee Tape

The most unexpected development in the news conference came when Clemens' team played a 17-minute tape of a phone conversation between Clemens and McNamee that occurred last Friday. On the tape, Clemens expresses his displeasure with the scrutiny he is undergoing, and tells McNamee that "I just don't know why you did it." McNamee, whose voice is breaking at times, repeatedly implores Clemens to "tell me what you want me to do ... you treated me better than anybody."

Question Raised: Where did this tape come from?

Answer: Clemens was with his legal team during the phone call, and they recorded the conversation.

Question Raised: Why were McNamee and Clemens talking on the phone Friday?

Answer: Lawyers for Clemens and McNamee agree that McNamee sought the audience. McNamee's 10-year-old son, Brian Jr., who idolizes Clemens, is sick, and McNamee e-mailed Clemens hoping that Clemens would talk to Brian Jr. and perhaps soothe some of his distress over the maelstrom that has engulfed his father and favorite player.

Question Raised: What did the tape show?

Answer: Not surprisingly, that depends which side you ask. Hardin characterized the conversation as bizarre behavior for someone who claims to have told the truth. "The guy makes allegations against someone," Hardin said incredulously, "and then calls and asks for his help and asks what he wants him to do." Hardin said he wanted to play the tape to give people who had not already condemned Clemens more information with which to consider McNamee's credibility. On the other side, Emery was disgusted by the use of the tape. "Here's Clemens getting on the phone with his former friend whose son [is both seriously ill and upset] ... and in a cynical and calculated way he sat on the phone with his lawyers trying to lure Brian to say something that Brian didn't say."

Question Raised: What did Brian say?

Answer: Mostly that he was sorry and upset for all the pain that had been caused, and that Clemens had "treated me like family." He did not, however, directly address the veracity of his statements about Clemens' use of performance-enhancing drugs.

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