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Joel Johnson, a senior adviser to Mr Clinton from 1999 to 2001 and who worked with the White House throughout the impeachment proceedings, said that the Clinton administration’s establishment of a war room “allowed the business of governing to go on”.

“While the press secretary generally fielded questions during the daily press briefing, the bulk of the day-to-day incoming questions unrelated to the other business of government all went to a separate communications and rapid-response team basically embedded in the White House counsel’s office,” Mr Johnson said.

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