In a new tell-all book, “Once Upon a Secret: My Affair with President John F. Kennedy and Its Aftermath,” now-69-year-old Mimi Alford writes candidly about her eighteen-month affair with the former president, starting when she was a 19-year-old White House intern.
A review by the New York Post summarizes some of the explosive details of the book, including Kennedy taking the intern’s virginity, pimping her out to “first friend” David Powers while he watched, forcing her to take drugs, helping to put her in touch with a then-illegal abortion doctor during a false-alarm pregnancy scare, flying her to Washington from her all-girls school while his wife was away and, in a dark moment of weakness during the Cuban Missile Crisis, admitting that he would rather see his children “red than dead.”
Throughout it all, they never kissed. “The wide gulf between us — the age, the power, the experience — guaranteed our affair would never evolve into anything serious,” Alford writes.
First spotting Alford in the White House pool, Kennedy instructed Powers to invite her to a party that evening. After Alford had drank a number of daiquiris, Kennedy gave her a “tour” of the White House, where he took her virginity in first lady Jackie Kennedy’s bedroom.
“The fact that I was being desired by the most famous and powerful man in America only amplified my feelings to the point where resistance was out of the question,” Alford writes. “That’s why I didn’t say no to the president. It’s the best answer I can give.”
“On one excursion, she met Vice President Lyndon Johnson,” the Post reports. “When she told the president about the introduction, he lost his composure. ‘Stay away from him,’ he commanded, likely worried that Johnson could use knowledge of the affair against him.” (RELATED: New tapes reveal that Jackie Kennedy believed LBJ was behind JFK’s assassination)
The book, available nationwide, is likely to stir controversy, shifting public attention to dark aspects of the former president’s legacy. There has been no word from serial Kennedy biographer and MSNBC host Chris Matthews about how future renderings of the Washington “Camelot” legacy might accommodate Alford’s disturbing presidential portrait. (RELATED: MSNBC’s Chris Matthews: Why his brand new Kennedy book is different)