Ever since Great Britain introduced impeachment in the fourteenth century, legislative majorities have used it for partisan ends, and in most cases it was unfairly implemented. It came to be understood that the misconduct justifying impeachment might be criminal in the usual sense, but it does not need to be. Bill Clinton was the fifteenth public official to be impeachment by the House of Representatives and tried in the Senate. Twelve were judges, one was a Cabinet officer, and two were presidents. Clinton was the only elected president to be impeached, since Andrew Johnson ascended to the presidency in 1865 after Abraham Lincoln was assassinated.


The first public officer to be impeached was Tennessee Senator William Blount in 1799. He was charged with violating American-Spanish agreements by conspiring to use frontiersmen and Native Americans to drive the Spanish out of Florida. The Senate voted to dismiss the charges against Blount, primarily because he had been expelled by the Senate.


John Pickering of New Hampshire became the first federal judge to be impeached. The charges against him in 1803 included: malfeasance in office, intoxication on the bench, and swearing in court. Pickering was convicted and removed from office by a Senate vote of 19-7 which came strictly across party lines. The following year, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase was also impeached for malfeasance in office by giving a partisan charge to a jury which led to a wrongful conviction in a treason case. Chase was acquitted.


In 1830, Missouri Federal Judge James Peck was charged with abusing his power and incarcerating a journalist who had criticized him. Peck was acquitted when the Senate failed to muster the two-thirds vote required to remove him from office. District Judge West Humphreys of Tennessee was impeached in 1862 for supporting secession and acting as a judge for the Confederacy. Subsequently, he was convicted and removed from office.

President Johnson was set up in 1869 when Radical Republicans passed the Tenure of Office Act over his veto. Despite the fact that he could only dismiss a public official with the Senate’s approval, Johnson still went ahead and fired his secretary of war. Eleven counts were drawn up against Johnson, but he was acquitted in the Senate by a single vote.


Secretary of War William Belknap, appointed by President Ullyses Grant, was impeached in 1876 for accepting cash from a political appointee over a span of six years. Belknap resigned after the House unanimously voted charges of impeachment against him. Nevertheless, he was still tried and acquitted in the Senate.


Eight more public officials were impeached in the twentieth century. District Judge Charles Swayne of Florida was indicted by the House in 1905. Swayne was charged with padding expense accounts and using property which was being held in receivership. In his subsequent Senate trial, Swayne was acquitted. In 1912 Commerce Judge Robert Archbald was impeached for using his position to influence contracts in which he had a hidden financial interest. He was then convicted by the Senate and removed from office. Illinois District Judge George English was impeached in 1926 for taking an interest-free loan for a bank of which he was a director. At his trial English resigned before the senators voted on the charge against him. District Judge Harold Louderback of California was impeached by the House in 1933 for appointing incompetent friends as bankruptcy receivers. However, he was acquitted at his Senate trial. Three years later Florida District Judge Halsted Ritter was indicted by the House on seven counts which included taking a bribe, evading taxes, and bringing shame on the court. Ritter was convicted on only one charge -- that he brought disrepute to the court -- and was removed by a two-thirds vote.


In 1986, District Judge Harry Clalborne of Nevada was impeached by an 87-10 vote for income tax evasion. At the time of the impeachment proceedings, he was serving a prison sentence on the tax evasion charges. Three years later, District Judge Alcee Hastings was impeached for obstruction of justice, and he was subsequently convicted by the Senate. Later, he was elected to the House of Representatives from his home state of Florida. Finally, District Judge Walter Nixon Jr. of Mississippi was impeached on a perjury charge in 1989, and he, too, was removed from office.


THE FOUNDING FATHERS’ VIEWS OF SEXUAL MISCONDUCT. Over 200 years ago, the Founding Fathers' views on sexually-related misconduct were made clear. Federalist party member and Secretary of Treasury Alexander Hamilton was investigated by Congress on charges of financial corruption in 1792 and 1793. He was questioned about his dealings with James Reynolds who was a convicted swindler. Reynolds said that Hamilton had given him Treasury money to play the stock market. Hamilton admitted giving money to Reynolds but said the money was his own and had been given for a different purpose. No charges were brought against Hamilton. A precedent had been set.


Then a second scandal surfaced in the early 1800s. Hamilton admitted that he had committed adultery with Reynolds' wife, Maria, and that she had bribed her husband to cover up the affair. Nevertheless, members of Congress on both sides, as well as Democratic-Republican President James Monroe, did not consider it an impeachable offense. Congress heard Hamilton's confession and concluded that the matter was private -- not public -- and that no impeachable offense had occurred. They agreed to keep the entire matter secret. In addition George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison learned of the affair, and they also kept silent. In fact, Hamilton eventually was nominated for the second highest post in the Army, and the nomination was confirmed by Congress.




STARR'S VENDETTA AGAINST THE PRESIDENT. For eight months, Bill Clinton repeatedly hid behind a fog of legalistic arguments. He used every semantic trick between January and August 1998. He was vague and inconsistent. He was evasive and misled the American public. His behavior was reprehensible. He betrayed his wife and daughter, his cabinet and aides, and the American people. He was responsible for 80 people being subpoenaed to testify, and many of those were compelled to pay their own legal bills. Clinton subjected numerous people to an dreadful ordeal in order to hide a personal relationship which did not involve the government. He never stepped forward to defend anyone.


On the other side of the aisle, "not-so-independent" counsel Starr was the one who, after being stalled after four years and $40 million, led a right wing conspiracy to drag down the president. Starr violated the private and sexual life of an American president. Never before in American history has a legal document of this sort made its way into public view and never before have a president's sexual habits been so thoroughly exposed to the American people. Even the Jones sexual harassment lawsuit did not contain crude and graphic detail.


In many ways, the partisan battle dated back to the Democrat-controlled Senate’s rejection of Judge Robert Bork for the Supreme Court in 1987. It included the failure of the Democrats to confirm the nomination of Senator John Tower for secretary of defense amid rumors of alcoholism and womanizing in the Bush administration. Also the heated battle over the confirmation of Judge Clarence Thomas in the midst of sexual harassment charges by Anita Hill also fueled the hatred which had developed between the two parties. And the ouster of Speakers Jim Wright on ethics charges and Newt Gingrich over the House post office also may have been contributing factors to "payback time" in 1998.


It was Starr who led the charges of impeachment. And closely marching behind him were Congressman Henry Hyde and Speaker Gingrich, while Chief Justice William Rehnquist waited on the sidelines to preside over impeachment trial in the Senate. These conservative officials were cheered on by groups such as the Christian Coalition which argued that to have "dirty sex" in the Oval Office meant that one should be thrown out of office. As a result of Starr's inquisition, the state of the nation was placed in peril. The independent counsel abused his office, and along the way several dangerous precedents were set. Starr was appointed by a conservative panel of judges and acted in a partisan manner, determined to find allegations against the President which related to Whitewater, Filegate and Travelgate. When he realized that he did not have the evidence to find an impeachment case, he turned to Clinton's private adulterous life so that he could trump up impeachable offenses against the president. In doing so, Starr assaulted Clinton, the office of the president, and on the nation's democratic system. It was a political with hunt.


In his report, Starr mentioned the word "sex" over 500 times while using the word "Whitewater" only twice. The report filled 36 boxes; it consisted of 445 pages; and 140 pages included grounds for impeachment. Starr's inquiry into Clinton's sex life cost an estimated $4.4 million.


None of Clinton's actions directly affected the government or the American public. His actions did not warrant an impeachment inquiry. Congress may bring impeachment charges only for "treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors." This was incorporated into the Constitution in order to protect the country against a president who was using his official powers against the nation and against the American people. Even if Clinton's acts amounted to a criminal offense, this does not constitute an impeachable offense under the Constitution. Impeachment was not intended to remove a president from office for perjuring himself or obstructing justice which emanates from any personal encounters. In the 16 impeachment cases, 13 of which involved federal judges, impeachment was used solely to punish serious breaches of official duty. It has never been used for personal matters.


In 1997, federal prosecutors filed a total of 49,655 cases. Only 87 of those were for perjury. By the end of 1998, 115 people were serving sentences for perjury in federal prisons. Perjury charges have been brought in civil cases far less frequently than in criminal cases. In addition, the law of perjury is highly technical, with courts sometimes ruling that some obviously misleading statements, such as those which Clinton made in the Jones deposition, may not constitute perjury under the law.





As a result of Starr’s relentless assault on the president, the court set several dangerous precedents which greatly diminished the power of the president. First, presidents may now be sued for private conduct while still in office. Second, government lawyers may be compelled to disclose advice they provide to presidents. Third, the notion that executive privilege protects a president's conversation with his advisers has been restricted.


In addition, Clinton voluntarily set a precedent as the first president to testify before a grand jury investigating his own actions. One potential battle -- over whether a prosecutor can require a president to appear by issuing a subpoena -- was avoided when Clinton agreed to testify.


These legal precedents did not come as a result of Clinton's efforts to protect conversations involving national security or sensitive law enforcement or economic policy. They resulted from the president's effort to hide an affair with Lewinsky until he finally was compelled to acknowledge. Executive privilege only protects conversations about sensitive government matters between the president and top advisers.


Furthermore, these proceedings have paved the way for more lawsuits against presidents in office. It has brought about a reluctance by aides to fullfill their duties. In the future many advisers will not give presidents candid advice and maintain memorandums or diaries. Additionally, future presidents will not seek quality advisers because of the risk of large legal fees -- for fear that they may be subpoenaed. Finally, it is likely that future presidents will be more hesitant to evoke executive privilege for fear of political accusations that they are trying to hide questionable actions.

Furthermore, the court reversed a precedent, declaring that members of the Secret Service can be called to testify about the movements, actions, and habits of the president.




According to The Breach: Inside the Impeachment and Trial of William Jefferson Clinton by Washington Post staff writer Peter Baker, Clinton came closer to losing his grip on office in 1998 than was apparent at the time. Ickes approached several Democratic Party leaders about a strategy to urge the president to resign when impeachment seemed almost certain. In the late summer of 1998, Baker wrote that Ickes "told people that the only possible way to convince his ex-boss to give up power would be to put together a coalition of interest groups and key senior members from Congress to go to him as a delegation and tell him there was no way to hold the White House in 2000 unless he resigned." Ickes presented the idea over breakfast with AFL-CIO President John Sweeney at a Washington hotel. Sweeney responded, "Let's wait and see, Harold." And the idea faded away.


Author Baker pointed out that Clinton's support was perilously thin in mid-1998 when many congressional Democrats were furious at him for lying about the Lewinsky affair and then refusing to apologize fully about his actions. Democratic House leaders concluded that an astonishing 100 of the 206 Democrats might vote for impeachment. In the Senate, Democratic leader Thomas Daschle briefly refused to take the president's calls, and top White House aides decided to poll the chamber's 45 Democrats. The book indicated that "their canvass showed that the president was in far more trouble than even the media suspected. At least a dozen Democratic senators appeared on the verge of abandoning the president." Baker disclosed that Clinton feared telling his wife that he had lied in denying his sexual affair with Lewinsky. Instead, he dispatched David Kendall deliver the devastating news in the White House's residential wing.


House Speaker-elect Bob Livingston wanted to call off the impeachment drive just before it went to the full House floor on December 18, 1998, according to The Breach: Inside the Impeachment and Trial of William Jefferson Clinton. Livingston had just been forced to tell colleagues of his own marital infidelities and hoped to end the entire matter. He "lost his nerve." He told an aide, Mark Corallo, "We've got to stop this. This is crazy. We're about to impeach the president of the United States." Corallo, persuaded him to reconsider, saying, "Boss, we have a rapist in the White House.," referring to allegations of a 1978 incident lodged against Clinton by Juanita Broaddrick.


House Majority Whip DeLay and his aides mounted an aggressive effort to impeach and oust Clinton, according to The Breach: Inside the Impeachment and Trial of William Jefferson Clinton. They referred to it as "the campaign"and worked effectively to prevent a censure vote by the full House. DeLay was incensed on August 17, 1998, when Clinton admitted his relationship with Lewinsky but also lashed out at Starr. "I want a war room," DeLay told his staffers. "I want you to work day and night." When DeLay learned that Republican Congressman Jon D. Fox of Pennsylvania was leaning against impeachment, he had influential conservative Rabbi Daniel Lapin track down Fox on a Middle East trip with Clinton and change his opinion.


According to The Breach: Inside the Impeachment and Trial of William Jefferson Clinton, many White House aides were disgusted by Clinton's affair and his lies about it, and they engaged in a sometimes bitter struggle over how to handle the crisis. Presidential lawyer Mickey Kantor proposed that Clinton give a televised speech showing little remorse for the affair after the affair surfaced. On January 24, Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles told Kantor, "How dare you? We're not going to use this crap!"


As soon as the Starr report was forwarded to the House, members from both parties immediately spoke of working in an atmosphere of bipartisanship. That never happened. From the beginning Republicans and Democrats alike sparred, both aides contending that the other was refusing to act in an bipartisan manner.

At the beginning, House Judiciary Committee Chair Hyde indicated that he and his GOP colleagues hoped to act in a non-partisan manner. However, that soon evaporated. He and the president had been adversaries for a number of years. The Hyde Amendment -- banning federally funded abortions -- had continuing support from GOP presidents. However, in 1992 Clinton was forced to accept compromise language that would allow federal funds to be used for abortions in cases involving rape and incest. After the 1994 GOP House victory, Hyde went back to his original absolutist position: "Rape is horrible. The only thing worse than rape is abortion. That's killing."


Hyde also was involved in his own expensive savings and loan scandal as a paid director of Clyde Federal Bank, costing taxpayers $67 million in bailout money. Additionally, his own adulterous affair was revealed. He carried on a sexual affair for five years with a married mother of three, leading to the breakup of the woman's family. Furthermore, during the 1987 Iran-Contra hearings Hyde was one of Oliver North's most vigorous defenders, saying that it was a mistake to "label every untruth and every deception an outrage." He condemned the Iran-Contra investigation as both a "disconcerting and distasteful whiff of moralism and institutional self-righteousness" and "a witch hunt."


Then, in April 1998, Hyde testified as a character witness at the civil trial of Joseph Scheidler, who was accused of orchestrating blockades against abortion clinics. Hyde said, "He's (Scheidler) a hero to me. He has the guts I wish more of us had." When asked on cross-examination if he could vouch for the character of a man who may be breaking the law, Hyde replied, "Absolutely, if the law of the land is immoral and condones the killing of children." In his testimony Hyde drew an analogy between the work of abortion clinics and the horrors of the Holocaust. Hyde told the Chicago Sun-Times, "I am trying to analogize an abortion clinic, where people are destroyed by intention, with the death camps. The analogy fits in my judgment." Despite Hyde's testimony, the jury awarded damages against Scheidler's organization to two clinics under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.


On September 9 Hyde issued a press release where he expressed his first standard:

"If the EVIDENCE does not justify a full impeachment investigation,

I will not recommend one to the House. However, if the EVIDENCE

does justify an inquiry, I will fulfill my oath of office and recommend

a fuller inquiry."


Hyde never was able to deliver this promise to provide evidence of impeachable offenses, so he quickly changed his story in his effort to bring down the president. On September 28 he said:


"The question facing the committee is quite simple, really. Do the

ALLEGATIONS the president merit further investigation? Should

we inquire into these ALLEGATIONS or refuse to take a closer look

and just shut down?"


Contentious side issues between the two parties quickly developed. First, Hyde said that he would send a bipartisan team of investigators to Starr's office to examine materials which were not sent to Congress. Democrats said that they wanted to see whether Starr had held back any exculpatory information about Clinton's relationship with Lewinsky. Second, Hyde convened an open hearing which examined precedents which qualified as an impeachable offense. Third, he gave authority to the senior Democrat, John Conyers of Michigan, to issue subpoenas on his own after the authorization of an impeachment inquiry by he entire House.


THE GOP’S NON-PARTISAN ASSAULT. Initially, the GOP chose to move slowly and deliberately. The strategy of the White House was two-fold. The Clinton team sought to attack the Republicans on every issue in order to show the American public that the GOP was working in a partisan and imprudent manner to crucify the president. When the Republicans indicated that they had to proceed slowly to insure that the case be handled meticulously, the Democrats yelled that they were stalling. When the Republicans moved expeditiously in other areas, the Democrats claimed that they were acting recklessly. Then the White House tried to steer away from the president's sexual relationship with Lewinsky and endeavored to portray the inquiry as a partisan witch hunt and one which was orchestrated by two unpopular Republicans with dismal popularity ratings. One was Speaker of the House Gingrich with approval ratings in the low twentieth percentile, and the other was Special Prosecutor Starr whose four year investigation resulted in an approval rating of slightly above 10 percent.


When House Democrats endorsed censure, the GOP quickly brushed aside any possibility of a deal. Then Democrats proposed a limited impeachment inquiry next week. This gave them the freedom to vote for an inquiry which would not jeopardize the election of some of their candidates in the mid-term elections. They suggested a time limit of one to three months on the inquiry and recommended that it would be restricted to Clinton's affair with.Lewinsky. Thus, this gave the Democrats more credibility in that they were on the record as supporting a formal impeachment investigation into Clinton's conduct. This, too, was rejected by GOP members of the House. Republicans argued that they need to leave the window open in the event that Starr sent more evidence to the House.


On October 5, the House Judiciary Committee convened. David Schippers, the chief Republican investigator and previously a life-long Democrat, outlined 15 specific counts of lying under oath, obstructing justice and conspiracy. He recommended that additional charges be added to those which had been recommended by Starr: witness tampering, obstruction of justice, and making false statements under oath. In addition, Lewinsky was named as a co-conspirator in efforts to obstruct justice. Other anonymous co-conspirators were also named. Schippers then dropped one of Starr's 11 charges, omitting references to a presidential claim of executive privilege. This had been cited by Starr as evidence of abuse of power. Schippers believed that the question of claiming executive privilege was primarily the responsibility of the judicial branch than Congress. In an apparent ploy to gather more public support for impeachment, the GOP decided to play down the graphic sexual details which were contained in Starr's report, although it obviously had to keep Clinton and Lewinsky's sexual encounters.

By accusing Clinton of making false statements rather than perjury, Republicans sought to negate the White House argument that the president's testimony in the Jones case and before the Starr grand jury, no matter how misleading, did not fit the legal definition of perjury. By dropping Starr's charge that Clinton abused his power in asserting executive privilege, the GOP abandoned the count that most authorities considered weakest.


On the Democratic side, chief Democratic investigator Abbe Lowell emphasized the constitutional standards for impeachment and the difficulty of the process. He contrasted the gravity of impeachment with the relative inconsequence of the president's relationship with Lewinsky. The committee Democrats submitted two resolutions. First, they proposed to narrow the scope of the inquiry to Lewinsky's relationship with Clinton. Second, they suggesed a time frame within which to complete their investigation. Both plans were rejected by their counterparts.


All 21 committee Republican members rejected each of the Democrats' proposals. The committee voted along party lines -- 21-16 -- to proceed with the Republican proposal, endorsing an open-ended investigation modeled after the Watergate proceedings that forced President Nixon from office in 1974. The vote underscored the partisan flavor the the inquiry and may have been viewed as a slight victory for Clinton whose strategy was to depict the proceedings as an unfair and partisan process in an effort to bring him down.


Many Republicans argued that lying under oath alone constituted an impeachable offense, let alone obstruction of justice or witness tampering. On the other hand, most Democrats countered that such violations, even if proven, were not severe enough to justify overturning the 1996 election since they concern Clinton's private life.


The day before the House vote on the impeachment inquiry, Clinton said, "I think everybody should cast a vote on principle and conscience. It's up to others to decide what happens to me, and ultimately it's going to be up to the American people to make a clear statement there." Yet privately, both Clinton and Gore lobbied Democratic House members to vote against the inquiry. This would have added more strength to the president's allegation that this process was purely partisan. The First Lady met with 25 House Democratic freshmen, and she stated that the Republican proposal to follow the Watergate process was not being followed and that they should follow a more limited inquiry.


California Congressman Vic Fazio, chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, met with the president to convey a message from approximately 50 moderate Democrats who wanted Clinton to publicly declare the vote unimportant and to pledge cooperation with any probe. The president refused to acquiesce to his demands. At about the same time, Starr sent a letter to the House Judiciary Committee yesterday saying he could not rule out referring evidence of other misconduct by Clinton to Congress as possible grounds for impeachment.

THE HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE VOTES TO GO FORWARD WITH THE INQUIRY. In October, the House Judiciary Committee voted primarily along party lines and approved a Republican-written resolution which was modeled on the Watergate proposal. This officially opened the impeachment inquiry. Democrats vehemently opposed the Republican resolution, saying it contained no time limit and was far too broad. The Democrats also claimed that their counterparts were unfairly applying the Watergate standard to a scandal that was less important. Conyers said, "This is not an investigation into the wholesale subversion of Government involving multiple agencies, the FBI, the CIA, and others."


Furthermore, House Democrats sought to acquire all the evidence which had been compiled by the special prosecutor. However, this was blocked by Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee. The GOP reported that Starr had already allowed both GOP and Democrat committee staffers the opportunity to jointly review the material in the special prosecutor's office.


THE HOUSE VOTES TO PROCEED WITH IMPEACHMENT PROCEEDINGS. On October 8, following three hours of debate which largely followed party lines, the House of Representatives voted 258-176 to begin a full-scale inquiry into possible grounds for the impeachment of the president. Thirty-one Democrats broke ranks with the Clinton and voted alongside all 227 GOP members. Some at the White House had feared wholesale defections which never materialized. Yet, the fact that 15 percent of Democrats voted with Republicans thwarted the White House strategy which was to portray the entire proceedings as a partisan witch hunt against the president.


Congress recessed for three weeks, while the Judiciary Committee remained on task to sort out strategic questions, primarily whether they should call witnesses such as the president, Lewinsky, Tripp, Jordan, and Currie. Hyde was back on the war path. In mid-October he announced that he would "narrow" the impeachment inquiry and considered consolidating or even dropping some of the 15 potential charges which had been announced by Schiffers. Hyde's intent was to streamlinine those into as few as two counts: one charging that Clinton repeatedly lied under oath; the other alleging that he tried to obstruct justice. Hyde also announced that he did not expect to expand the inquiry to include the Whitewater land deal, the mishandling of FBI files, campaign finance abuses or any other allegations unrelated to the Lewinsky affair. However, sources said that if Starr sent a report alleging that Clinton made unwanted sexual advances toward Willey and then lied to try to cover them up, the committee would use the allegations to try to establish a pattern of Clinton's misbehavior.


THE HEARINGS DAMAGE THE REPUBLICANS. GOP House members could not escape the fact that they had to weigh the prospect of impeachment. Even though the goal of most Republican House members was to evict the president, there were other criteria which could not be ignored. Congresswoman Anne Northrup of Kentucky said, "We have nothing to gain, politically or any other way, by impeaching the president. That is roundly felt in the Republican conference. You can demonstrate your bigness by saying that while this is wrong, the evidence doesn't justify (impeachment)." An anonymous Northeastern Republican said, "This is a lose-lose situation for us." Congresswoman Constance Morella of Maryland said, "I do not look for an impeachment. I hope they don't find grounds for it."


Some Republican House members preferred a weakened Clinton to a presumably stronger President Gore. Still others feared a backlash. They felt that Republicans would look foolish if they voted for articles of impeachment only to find that the Senate refused to take the next step and put Clinton on trial. Furthermore, most GOP members wanted to finish the inquiry before the public turned against them for prolonging the scandal.


After the partisan vote to launch a formal impeachment investigation, public support for Congress and Republican candidates dipped significantly. The Washington Post poll found that support for the Republican-held Congress fell the most among voters who said that they were certain to vote in the midterm November election. On the other hand, support for Democratic candidates for the House increased among likely voters. The survey also found that Clinton was more popular after the House passed the impeachment inquiry resolution than he was before. 48 percent of those polled said that they "strongly" approved of the president's performance, the highest level of strong support for Clinton found by a Washington Post survey. The president even made modest gains among Republicans: 39 percent approved of the job Clinton was doing as president, up from 32 percent a month earlier. According to the poll, the proportion of likely voters who said that they intended to vote for the Democratic House candidate increased from 47 percent to 51 percent after the House approved that the impeachment hearings should proceed. In the same time frame, Republican support fell from 47 percent to 42 percent. Fifty-two percent of those interviewed said that they trusted Clinton more than Republicans in Congress to handle the main problems confronting the nation. Only 34 percent said they trusted congressional Republicans, down from 38 percent two weeks ago and the GOP's worst showing on this question since Republicans took control of Congress in 1994.


Only 45 percent of those polled favored impeachment proceedings to continue, while 52 percent said they were opposed. Seventy percent of Republicans supported the inquiry, while an equally large proportion of Democrats opposed it. This indicated the partisan public opinion about the White House scandal. Many Americans believed that both political parties behaved badly over the issue of impeachment, but the public believed that Republicans were worse than their Democratic colleagues. in 10 respondents said that they disapproved of the way that Republicans in Congress were handling the issue of impeachment. However, 49 percent were similarly critical of the way that congressional Democrats were dealing with impeachment.


According to the survey, 71 percent said that congressional Republicans were "mainly interested in hurting Clinton" rather than "finding out the truth," up from 66 percent two weeks ago. Half of all Republicans thought GOP members are politically motivated. On the other side of the aisle, 63 percent felt that Democrats in Congress were mainly interested in "protecting Clinton politically." This was unchanged from the time when the the House was about to decide on impeachment proceedings. At the same time, the poll found that support for impeachment and censure remained largely unchanged from earlier polls: About six in 10 said that Clinton should not be impeached. This was about the same proportion who believed that he should be formally reprimanded for his relationship with Lewinsky.


The Republican Party chose not to include the Clinton sex scandal in its political advertisements for the November midterm election since the majority of Americans opposed impeachment and that it would create a backlash at the polls. However, just one week before the election, the GOP reversed itself and ran a $10 million nationwide advertising blitz which capitalized on the sex exposé. The RNC believed that the advertisements would prod more conservative voters to go to the polls. Thus, as part of their final get-out-the-vote strategy, the committee settled on three 30 second commercials which were broadcast in 70 media markets in the closing week of the campaign. They were broadcast in three southern districts where polling by the party found that Clinton is particularly unpopular with swing voters. The advertisements were tailored to respond to polling that found that voters were not upset about Clinton's relationship with Lewinsky but about the fact that he misled the public.


The commercials tried to link the scandal to specific issues. In one advertisement the narrator did not mention the scandal but it did include footage of Clinton in slow motion wagging his finger at the camera as he did earlier in the year by publicly declaring that he had not had "sexual relations" with Lewinsky. The advertisement opened with a tape of Clinton changing his mind on how many years it will take to balance the budget. Then the announcer said, "It took the Republicans just four years to get the job done. And get the budget balanced. Now there's a budget surplus. And a Republican plan to save Social Security. And a Republican plan to eliminate the marriage penalty tax. America needs the balance."




The Republicans hoped to make the Lewinsky matter the key issue in the November midterm elections. However, the "get-Clinton" push by the GOP triggered a voter backlash in the elections. This suggested that the GOP was in disarray, and it also signaled the end of the "conservative revolution."


Republicans organized their strategy to revolve around the elections. First, they scheduled the vote on whether to hold impeachment hearings before election day to get maximum political benefit from the Clinton-Lewinsky matter. This backfired. Second, the GOP released Clinton's videotaped testimony just prior to election day. This also backfired.


The RNC has typically raised 11 times more money than have the Democrats. The GOP spent $10 million on attack ads which they aimed directly at Clinton's personal life. Republicans emphasized the point that the president could not be trusted. However, mainstream Americans were not concerned with the scandal but rather with issues which were addressed by Democrats -- the economy, education, and the environment. Additionally, Republican strategists believed that a high percentage of their constituency would be energized to come out to the polls and that they could make broad gains in both houses.


The White House strategy was to paint a dismal picture of the president being a victim in an attempt to expose his personal sex life. In addition the administration pointed out that the GOP's primary concern was the Lewinsky affair at a time when Clinton was embroiled in the budget battle with Republican members of Congress. The Democrats sent a message pointing out that their counterparts were not interested about economic issues. Very little progress had been made towards a budget settlement, and the October 1 deadline for fiscal 1999 had already passed.


Republicans were stunned on election day. The lineup in the Senate stayed unchanged, as Republicans maintained a 55-45 majority, while in the House the Democrats picked up five seats to narrow the GOP majority to only five. This was the first time in midterm elections since 1934 that the party in the White House did not lose seats in either or both houses. The election was a referendum -- at least in part -- against the way which Republicans were handling the impeachment proceedings. A majority of Americans continued to demand that the inquiry conclude quickly.


The November elections also signified a victory for clean-money campaign reform ballot initiatives in Massachusetts and Arizona. Oregon voters passed an initiative by defeating an antiunion "paycheck protection" measure. In Washington a significant increase in the minimum wage -- a raise indexed to inflation -- won approval by a 2-to-1 margin. Washington voters also defeated a move to criminalize "partial birth" abortion and approved a medical marijuana measure. Medical marijuana-related ballot propositions succeeded everywhere else they appeared: in Alaska, Arizona, Oregon, Nevada, Colorado, and Washington, D.C. In Florida liberals and progressives won a tougher gun control law and stronger antidiscrimination language in the state constitution. In Colorado voters turned down restrictions on "partial birth" abortions and rejected a conservative proposal to allow private school tuition tax credits. Tobacco money failed to convince voters to reject California's Proposition 10 which added another 50 cent tax to cigarettes.


THE 1998 MIDTERM ELECTIONS BRING DOWN GINGRICH. This rejection of conservatism by the voters in November led to the demise of Speaker Gingrich. This came only four years after the GOP seized control of both houses and after the speaker launched the Republican revolution whereby he attempted to move the country to the far right.


Gingrich faced a mutiny from his fellow Republicans who insisted that his incompetence cost them Congressional seats. Anger among his colleagues had been building since he was awarded the speakership in 1994. His troubles ran deeper primarily as a result of his miscalculations on strategy in the midterm elections as well as the party's handling of the Lewinsky matter. Gingrich did not attempt to galvanize the GOP since he thought the party was already energized and that Lewinsky would erode the Democratic Party.


Only three days after the election, Gingrich announced that he would step down as speaker and that he would resign his House seat as well. Gingrich's decision to resign was a stunning reversal for one who was seen as very combative. Refusing to accept responsibility for the party's failures, he lashed out at his colleagues, saying that "all those who had marginalized the Republican Party had engaged in cannibalism." Gingrich's colleagues claimed that they wanted things their way or no way. Ironically, the reality was that it was the speaker -- not President Clinton -- who left Washington in disgrace.

Not only was Gingrich tossed aside by his colleagues but most Republicans now hoped that the impeachment inquiry would have vanished. They found themselves in a quandry since they had been pushing for months to impeach the president. It was too late to terminate the hearings since that would have been a colossal blow to their credibility


THE HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE RECONVENES. In November the Judiciary Subcommittee called on various Constitutional scholars to explain their interpretations of impeachment. The panel of experts was divided among those who argued that Clinton's alleged conduct could easily justify impeachment and those who said it fell far short of what the Founding Fathers had in mind when they envisioned removing a president from office for "treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors."


Just as the GOP tactics backfired on them just prior to the midterm elections, their strategy also damaged them just as the House Judiciary Committee was ready to reconvene. Two days before the hearings, the GOP attempted to inflame public sentiment against Clinton by voting to release Tripp's audiotapes. Then the Republican-majority imposed restrictions which were aimed at hindering any fair chance for the Democrats.


The primary focus of the hearings first centered around the standard for determining an impeachable offense. Several historians pointed out that the "high crimes and misdemeanors" applied to acts which were committed against the United States government. They said that crimes were not impeachable if they originated with one's personal life. For example in 1974 the Judiciary Committee rejected a charge of income tax evasion against President Nixon on the ground that the charge, even if true, did not amount to a misuse of distinctly presidential authority. In their first draft in 1787, the Founding Father wrote "high crimes and misdermeanors against the United States government." They ultimately dropped "against the United States government" since they felt that it would be redundant to include this in the United States Constitution.


Historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr. argued that Clinton's alleged offenses dealt largely with "private misbehavior." Schlesinger also noted that no one had spoken of impeaching former President Reagan when he lied about American involvement in the Iran-Contra scandal. Law professor Cass Sunstein of the University of Chicago told the panel that removing Clinton from office based on such insufficient charges "would threaten to convert impeachment into a legislative weapon to be used on any occasion in which a future president is involved or said to be involved in unlawful or scandalous conduct."


On the other hand, William Van Alstyne, a law professor at Duke University, agreed with the GOP majority by testifying that the alleged crimes Clinton committed -- such as perjury, witness tampering and obstruction of justice -- "may certainly be impeachable offenses." Van Alstyne disputed the argument that an elected official should have greater protection from removal than an appointed person such as a judge. John McGinnis, a law professor at Yeshiva University, said there could be "no checklist of impeachable offenses in a constitution that would stand the test of time." He said that perjury would be among them because it reflects "on the fitness of those officials who have sworn to uphold the law."

The historians also warned committee members that a compromise -- such as censureship -- had no basis in the Constitution and that it could dangerously weaken the institution of the presidency. Several historians said that the censure alternative would establish a dangerous precedent which would weaken the institution of the Presidency. Schlesinger said that censure would "hand one or both houses of Congress a new weapon to threaten and intimidate presidents." Georgetown University law professor Rev. Robert Drinan agreed that censure "would establish a dangerous precedent. ...Almost every election cycle we would have the Congress censuring the president if he were of a different party."


THE "STARR" WITNESS TESTIFIES. When the entire House Judiciary Committee reconvened, they awaited their first witness who was Starr. Democrats and Republicans first sparred over the format of the hearings. White House attorneys argued that they should have been given 90 minutes to cross-examine the special prosecutor, but Hyde allowed for a shorter 30 minute questioning period. Hyde also unilaterally ruled that questions into Starr's tactics would not be permitted.


Starr had rehearsed his speech before cameras. His two hour opening statement consisted of 58 double-spaced pages. In that no new evidence was presented, Starr appeared to have failed. He even exonerated Clinton on issues that some Republicans had hoped to pursue. He did not implicate the president in any wrong-doing in regard to the dismissal of White House travel office employees and the misuse of Federal Bureau of Investigation files of government employees. The independent counsel spent the bulk of the time defending the 11 impeachment charges which he had recommended in the Starr report.

Kendall's time limit was extended to one hour, and he used that time to attack Starr and the conduct of his investigation. The president's attorney described Starr as engaging in "overkill" in his four year inquiry and for engaging "an undisclosed number of private investigators" to gather evidence. Kendall noted that Starr had participated in virtually none of the questioning of the scores of witnesses in the case. He demanded to know when Starr had concluded that Clinton had not violated any law in the dismissal of staff members in regard to Travelgate and the administration's improper gathering of 900 FBI files on ex-Republican officials. Starr also acknowledged that he had not found sufficient evidence to accuse the president of criminal conduct in the Whitewater matter, even though he insisted that he had not concluded his investigation of the matter. He did not address whether the role of Hillary Clinton was still under investigation, even though the Little Rock grand jury had reviewed the matter six months earlier.


Kendall also accused Starr of leaking secret grand jury material to the media. The president's attorney pressed Starr on charges that his deputies needlessly interrogated Julie Hiatt Steele about her personal financial records and about the adoption records of her eight year-old son from Romania.


And when Starr was finished, he received a standing ovation from the "bipartisan" Republican committee members.

STARR'S ETHICS ADVISER QUITS. Starr suffered a major setback less than a day after he finished his testimony before the House Judiciary Committee. Starr's ethics adviser, Sam Dash, announced his resignation over his belief that the independent counsel used his position as one of advocacy to express his subjective opinions. Starr should have merely presented his evidence and then left it up to the committee to synthesize the information and come up with their own conclusion.


In a letter to Starr, Dash said, "You have violated your obligations under the independent counsel statute and have unlawfully intruded on the power of impeachment. I resign for a fundamental reason. Against my strong advice, you decided to depart from your usual professional decision-making by accepting the invitation of the House Judiciary Committee to appear ... and serve as an aggressive advocate for the proposition that the evidence ... demonstrates that the president committed impeachable offenses."


Dash said that the one duty of the independent counsel is to objectively provide for the House substantial and credible information that may constitute grounds for impeachment. Dash did not object to the independent counsel appearing before the Judiciary Committee and to give an accounting of how he conducted the investigation as well as to respond to unfair and inaccurate attacks against him. However, Dash did object to Starr's decision to attempt to serve as a prosecution witness for the impeachment of the president. Dash went on in his letter: "You have violated your obligations under the independent counsel statute and have unlawfully intruded on the power of impeachment."


THE FRUSTRATED GOP LIMPS ALONG. The abrupt resignation of Dash along with the beating which Republicans took at the November polls put a damper on any chance that the GOP had to impeach the president. House Republican members leaned towards voting for impeachment, but others indicated that they would cross party lines, maintaining that the allegations did not lead to "high crimes and misdemeanors." Republican Congressman John Porter of Illinois announced that"at least 50 Republicans who feel this matter has gone on for so long that it is leading nowhere." Congressman E. Clay Shaw of Florida said that he would "have some problems" with voting to remove Clinton from office because of his support in public opinion polls. Congressman Christoher Shays of Connecticut said, "It's an offensive situation, but is it a high crime or misdemeanor? I've taken the position that it isn't." Still other Republicans said that the charges Starr raised may have constituted grounds for impeachment but that they did not think it worth the agonizing process because of the near certainty that the Senate would not obtain a two-thirds vote to bring a guilty verdict. Still other Republicans preferred not to vote because in many constituencies it was a political loser no matter how they would have voted. By the end of November polls indicated that 62 percent of the country said that they wanted their member of Congress to vote against impeaching the president. And several other House Judiciary Committee Republicans suggested that they opposed impeachment. These included Mary Bono of California, James Rogan of California, Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas, and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina. But they soon turned against the president when they contended that the president was not cooperating in answering a list of 81 questions centering around the Lewinsky matter.


Clinton and his lawyers did not fall for the trap. His answers were vague and general. The president did not acknowledge any inconsistencies or falsehoods in his testimony, thereby not acknowledging that he had perjured himself in the Lewinsky affair. The panel was hoping to secure concise factual responses from the president to questions that gave rise to Starr's accusations that Clinton committed perjury, obstruction of justice, witness tampering and abuse of power in his efforts to conceal his relationship with Lewinsky.


Clinton reiterated that he had misled his family, his aides, and the nation about the relationship. He did not offer any new information on issues surrounding the impeachment inquiry. However, Clinton did acknowledge for the first time that he had discussed how to handle the Lewinsky matter with Dick Morris just hours after the president's affair became public in January. Clinton said that he was aware that Morris had conducted a poll on public attitudes about the Lewinsky revelations to gauge whether the president should publicly admit the affair to defuse the scandal. However, Clinton said he did not recall telling Morris that "we just have to win, then" when he was told that the public would not tolerate admissions by the president of obstruction of justice or subornation of perjury.


Clinton repeatedly stated that the answers he gave in his deposition in the Jones lawsuit and in his grand jury testimony in the Lewinsky investigation were not "false and misleading." He claimed a faulty memory on many of the central charges in the investigation, including the subject of numerous telephone conversations he had with Lewinsky and Jordan. He said that he did not believe he saw an affidavit which Lewinsky signed for the Jones case denying a sexual relationship, "although I cannot be absolutely sure." Clinton acknowledged calling Betty Currie into work on a Sunday and asking her certain questions about what she knew about his relationship with Lewinsky. But he asserted that he never encouraged Currie to lie before the grand jury. The president also said that he had toldnumerous friends and senior advisers that he had not had a sexual affair with Lewinsky.


Hyde denounced Clinton's responses to the 81 questions about the scandal. "Instead of shedding new light on the key facts, the president chose to evade them. He has made it very clear he is going to stick with his reliance on bizarre technical definitions and legalistic defenses." Hyde said that the president "did not challenge the truthfulness of the evidence. Rather, his responses revealed a selective ability to recall information." He warned that Clinton would soon have his last chance to contest any aspect of the impeachment case built by Starr. Many of Hyde's colleagues shared his anger, but others feared a backlash and were reluctant to a party-line impeachment vote.


Hyde appeared stymied in his bid to gather enough support from his colleagues in his effort to bring impeachment charges against Clinton. However, many GOP members of Congress were critical with the president's responses to the 81 questions and reconsidered impeachment charges. California Congressman Brian Bilbray said, "I think the brinkmanship and political hairsplitting (by Clinton) is driving people crazy. The doublespeak, the legal jargon and the delaying tactics are hurting the president more than than anything." Washington Congressman Rick White, who lost his seat in midterm elections but remained eligible to vote on impeachment in a lame-duck House session, said that the president's recent demeanor "hasn't impressed me, and I think most Republicans feel the same way." Some GOP members said they resented Clinton playing a round of golf at Camp David during the Thanksgiving holiday while his lawyers drafted responses to the 81 questions. In addition, some Democrats disclosed that they were not obligated to protect the president. Congressman Charles Stenholm of Texas cautioned that the White House "should not assume the Democrats will stick together" to defend him. "The president first has to make a case for why these charges are not impeachable." Additionally, Congressman Wayne Gilchrest of Maryland, who once favored a censureship, viewed impeachment as inevitable.


GRASPING FOR STRAWS? -- EXPANDING THE INQUIRY INTO CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM. In early December, Hyde switched gears and tried to expand the inquiry. Committee members voted along party lines -- 21-16 -- to subpoena four witnesses in the expanding impeachment inquiry. These included Daniel Gecker, Kathleen Willey's attorney; Robert Bennett, Clinton's first lawyer in the Jones case; senior White House lawyer Bruce Lindsey; and Nathan Landow, a Democratic fund-raiser who denied trying to influence Willey's testimony in the Jones lawsuit. But Bennett's subpoeana was dropped, and Gecker refused to answer questions before the Washington D.C. grand jury.


Hyde continued his crusade against the president. He appeared to be grasping for straws when he decided to broaden the inquiry into the area of campaign finance. Further complicating the inquiry was the disarray of Republican leadership stemming from the lame duck status of Speaker Gingrich. In addition Gingrich's successor, Bob Livingston, was scouring to assemble a staff and an agenda. The disheveled GOP had no one to turn to for leadership.


The Judiciary Committee voted stricted party lines when Republicans voted to subpoena FBI Director Louis Freeh and DOJ senior prosecutor Charles La Bella. GOP committee members hoped to gather more evidence implicating the president in illegalities in the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign. Both Freeh and La Bella had unsuccessfully urged Attorney General Reno to seek an independent counsel to scrutinize the president's 1996 campaign finance practices.


The committee's GOP menbers also voted unanimously to issue subpoenas demanding that Clinton and Reno provide the full, unedited memorandums that Freeh and La Bella wrote to Reno to support their arguments. Reno refused to turn over information from the DOJ's inquiry to the Judiciary Committee. The Republicans also demanded DOJ documents which involved DNC fund-raisers John Huang, Johnny Chung, Charlie Trie, and Mark Middleton.

Less than a week after GOP members launched his probe into the area of campaign finance illegalities, Hyde decided to abruptly move it to the backburner. The chairman decided to go back to the initial inquiry, announcing that there was "more than adequate" information available on the Lewinsky scandal to continue to move ahead.


In addition, Lott announced that "it would be very hard not to" have a Senate trial to consider removing the president from office if he was impeached by the full House. Lott inferred that should the House approve articles of impeachment, a Senate trial would follow quickly since the majority leader did not have the votes to bring down the president.


The White House obviously was pleased that the fund-raising matter was dropped. No one understood the rationale of the Republicans for bringing it up in the first place, since two other congressional committees already studied the matter and Attorney General Reno refused to ask for an independent counsel.


WHITE HOUSE ATTORNEYS DEFEND THE PRESIDENT BEFORE THE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE. The White House realized that their tactics of castigating Starr were backfiring on the president, so the president’s attorneys appeared apologetic without acknowledging a criminal illegalities. Clinton attorney Ruff said, "This is an unusual experience for me to be making a closing argument without quite knowing what I'm closing about. The president knows that what he did was wrong. He has admitted it. He has suffered privately and publicly. He is prepared to accept the obloquy that flows from his misconduct, and he recognizes that, like any citizen, he is and will be subject to the rule of law. But ... the president has not committed a high crime or misdemeanor."


However, the articles drafted by GOP-dominated committee accused Clinton of exactly that -- borrowing from language used during Nixon's impeachment. Although the facts in the Nixon case were far different and far more serious, the Judiciary Committee of 1974 approved articles of impeachment on obstruction of justice and abuse of power, along with one count of contempt of Congress.


Since most members of Congress believed that Clinton warranted some type of punishment, Charles Ruff said that the president was willing to face criminal prosecution for his offenses. Ruff made concessions which the White House had refused to do in the past. He all but admitted that the president lied. Ruff all but said that the Republicans knew and that he knew that Clinton lied. The difference was how to resolve the matter. Ruff told committee members that the White House was open to the idea of censure, and he stated that Clinton would neither pardon himself nor accept a pardon from his successor to avoid criminal charges. White House lawyer Greg Craig said, "I am willing to concede that in the Jones deposition, the president’s testimony was evasive, incomplete, misleading, and even maddening -- but it was not perjury."


The president’s attorneys pointed out that the committeee only worked with material which was submitted by the OIC and that they gathered no information themselves. In addition the grand jury

never determined if the testimonies of nearly one hundred witnesses was credible. That assessment was made solely by Starr’s office. Furthermore, the Judiciary Committee never called any of Starr’s witnesses to determine the validity of their testimonies. The president’s attorneys said that the allegations against Clinton were unfounded.


Kendall stressed that the president's alleged lying under oath in the Jones case concerned the purely private matter of his affair with Lewinsky, and he argued that such actions were not crimes against the state and therefore did not rise to the level of impeachable offenses. Starr had argued that Clinton's sexual encounters with Lewinsky did not justify invoking executive privilege, since they only related to the president's personal life and not his official duties. Kendall contended that it was impossible to separate the two: "Any conduct by the individual holding the office of the president, whether it is characterized as private or official, can have substantial impact on a president's official duties."

The White House made a similar argument to defend its assertions of attorney-client privilege. Clinton's attorneys argued that it was necessary for White House lawyers to be involved in discussions about both the Jones and Lewinsky cases because of the inevitable spillover of those private matters onto the president's ability to conduct his office.


Democrats complained that Hyde and his lieutenants dodged their request to specify exactly which of the president’s sworn statements were perjurious. Congressman Barney Frank of Massachusetts argued that Clinton’s statements were only about sex and that the GOP was attempting to hide the salacious statements. Frank said, "Did the president touch her here or did he not touch her here?" The Democratic side also charged that the Republicans would be bogging down Congress if they pushed forward with impeachment and then a Senate trial.


The White House also called several Constitutional scholars to testify to the committee. When it was pointed out that impeachment could be acrried over to the next Congress, Bruce Ackerman of Yale

University argued that this would be improper since the House actions did not take place during a lame-duck session. He maintained that -- just as legislation would die if it does not pass by both chambers at the time of adjournment -- the articles of impeachment should be considered dead at the end of a Congress if they have not gone to trial. On that basis he contended that a member of the next Congress could make a motion to strike down any article of impeachment approved by the current House. According to Ackerman, the question would be resolved by Chief Justice Rehnquist. Ackerman also noted that when the new House convened in 1999, it will have to reauthorize the appointment of a team of managers to prosecute the case in the Senate. If the resolution would not pass, the case would die for want of a prosecution team. This was vital since the GOP's House majority was reduced from 21 seats to 12 seats in the new Congress -- meaning that a swing of only six Republican votes would defeat the resolution.


Other legal authorities contended that the charge of perjury before the grand jury had a serious flaw. Article I charged that Clinton lied before the grand jury in August "concerning the nature and details of his relationship" with Lewinsky. Republicans would have to prove that Clinton's statements in August were "willfully perjurious." The president had admitted under oath that he had "inappropriate intimate contact" with the former White House intern, and he acknowledged that he had misled his family, friends, staff and the American public about his illicit relationship. However, Clinton always contended that he told the truth before the grand jury. Stephen Saltzburg of George Washington University said, "I'm surprised they didn't lay out the specifics on perjury yet. You can't debate whether someone testified falsely unless you know what the false statements were." The perjury charges were weak because they failed to include what prosecutors usually have in their arsenal: evidence from two or more witnesses that a defendant has lied under oath. Paul Rothstein of Georgetown University said, "It's the president's word against one other's -- Lewinsky. To prove, you need to have two witnesses."


Democratic defenders wanted to narrow in on the details. They conceded that the president lied to the public in January 1998. He admitted that he was misleading and evasive, and even "maddening" in his Jones case testimony. However, they maintained that he did not lie under oath to the grand jury.


But while the White House attorneys laid out their case against impeachment, GOP members had already made the decision to go after the president. During the second day of testimony, the Republicans completed drawing up four articles against the president. Hyde attempted to show that his colleagues were working within the spirit of non-partsianship when he drafted a letter to his colleagues. The chairman encouraged them to be open-minded until they directly heard the evidence.



Article I passed 21 (Republicans) to 16 (Democrats):


In his conduct while President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton, in violation of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the office of President of the United States and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, and in violation of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has willfully corrupted and manipulated the judicial process of the United States for his personal gain and exoneration, impeding the administration of justice, in that:

On August 17, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton swore to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth before a Federal grand jury of the United States. Contrary to that oath, William Jefferson Clinton willfully provided perjurious, false and misleading testimony to the grand jury concerning one or more of the following: (1) the nature and details of his relationship with a subordinate Government employee; (2) prior perjurious, false and misleading testimony he gave in a Federal civil rights action brought against him; (3) prior false and misleading statements he allowed his attorney to make to a Federal judge in that civil rights action; and (4) his corrupt efforts to influence the testimony of witnesses and to impede the discovery of evidence in that civil rights action.

In doing this, William Jefferson Clinton has undermined the integrity of his office, has brought disrepute on the Presidency, has betrayed his trust as President, and has acted in a manner subversive of the rule of law and justice, to the manifest injury of the people of the United States.

Wherefore, William Jefferson Clinton, by such conduct, warrants impeachment and trial and removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States.


Article II passed 20 (Republicans) to 16 (Democrats), 1 Republican:


In his conduct while President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton, in violation of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the office of President of the United States and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, and in violation of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has willfully corrupted and manipulated the judicial process of the United States for his personal gain and exoneration, impeding the administration of justice, in that:

(1) On December 23, 1997, William Jefferson Clinton, in sworn answers to written questions asked as part of a Federal civil rights action brought against him, willfully provided perjurious, false and misleading testimony in response to questions deemed relevant by a Federal judge concerning conduct and proposed conduct with subordinate employees.

(2) On January 17, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton swore under oath to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth in a deposition given as part of a Federal civil rights action brought against him. Contrary to that oath, William Jefferson Clinton willfully provided perjurious, false and misleading testimony in response to questions deemed relevant by a Federal judge concerning the nature and details of his relationship with a subordinate government employee and his corrupt efforts to influence the testimony of that employee.

In all of this, William Jefferson Clinton has undermined the integrity of his office, has brought disrepute on the Presidency, has betrayed his trust as President, and has acted in a manner subversive of the rule of law and justice, to the manifest injury of the people of the United States.

Wherefore, William Jefferson Clinton, by such conduct, warrants impeachment and trial, and removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States.

Article III passed 21 (Republicans) to 16 (Democrats):

In his conduct while President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton, in violation of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the office of President of the United States and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, and in violation of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has prevented, obstructed and impeded the administration of justice, and has to that end engaged personally and through his subordinates and agents, in a course of conduct or scheme designed to delay, impede, cover up and conceal the existence of evidence and testimony related to a Federal civil rights action brought against him in a duly instituted judicial proceeding.

The means used to implement this course of conduct or scheme included one or more of the following acts:

(1) On or about December 17, 1997, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly encouraged a witness in a Federal civil rights action brought against him to execute a sworn affidavit in that proceeding that he knew to be perjurious, false and misleading.

(2) On or about December 17, 1997, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly encouraged a witness in a Federal civil rights action brought against him to give perjurious, false and misleading testimony if and when called to testify personally in that proceeding.

(3) On or about December 28, 1997, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly engaged in, encouraged or supported a scheme to conceal evidence that had been subpoenaed in a Federal civil rights action brought against him.


(4) Beginning on or about December 7, 1997, and continuing through and including January 14, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton intensified and succeeded in an effort to secure job assistance to a witness in a Federal civil rights action brought against him in order to corruptly prevent the truthful testimony of that witness in that proceeding at a time when the truthful testimony of that witness would have been harmful to him.

(5) On January 17, 1998, at his deposition in a Federal civil rights action brought against him, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly allowed his attorney to make false and misleading statements to a Federal judge characterizing an affidavit, in order to prevent questioning deemed relevant by the judge. Such false and misleading statements were subsequently acknowledged by his attorney in a communication to that judge.

(6) On or about January 18 and January 20 and21, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton related a false and misleading account of events relevant to a Federal civil rights action brought against him to a potential witness in that proceeding, in order to corruptly influence the testimony of that witness.


(7) On or about January 21, 23 and 26, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton made false and misleading statements to potential witnesses in a Federal grand jury proceeding in order to corruptly influence the testimony of those witnesses. The false and misleading statements made by William Jefferson Clinton were repeated by the witnesses to the grand jury, causing the grand jury to receive false and misleading information.

In all of this, William Jefferson Clinton has undermined the integrity of his office, has brought disrepute on the Presidency, has betrayed his trust as President, and has acted in a manner subversive of the rule of law and justice, to the manifest injury of the people of the United States.

Wherefore, William Jefferson Clinton, by such conduct, warrants impeachment and trial, and removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States.


Article IV passed 21 (Republicans) to 16 (Democrats):

Using the powers and influence of the office of President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton, in violation of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the office of President of the United States and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States, and in disregard of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has engaged in conduct that resulted in misuse and abuse of his high office, impaired the due and proper administration of justice and the conduct of lawful inquiries, and contravened the authority of the legislative branch and the truth-seeking purpose of a coordinate investigative proceeding in that, as President, William Jefferson Clinton, refused and failed to respond to certain written requests for admission and willfully made perjurious, false and misleading sworn statements in response to certain written requests for admission propounded to him as part of the impeachment inquiry authorized by the House of Representatives of the Congress of the United States.


William Jefferson Clinton, in refusing and failing to respond, and in making perjurious, false and misleading statements, assumed to himself functions and judgments necessary to the exercise of the sole power of impeachment vested by the Constitution in the House of Representatives and exhibited contempt for the inquiry.

In doing this, William Jefferson Clinton has undermined the integrity of his office, has brought disrepute on the Presidency, has betrayed his trust as President, and has acted in a manner subversive of the rule of law and justice, to the manifest injury of the people of the United States.

Wherefore, William Jefferson Clinton, by such conduct, warrants impeachment and trial, and removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States.




Over 20 moderate House Republicans, fearing a backlash in the 2000 elections, vacillated over whether they should vote for impeachment. Since Clinton’s fate rested in their hands, they were the target of heavy lobbying by the president and his staff.


Close to 200 of all the 228 GOP-majority districts were solidly Republican, so those congressmen and -women could not be damaged by voting for impeachment. In the other 48 districts, the vote was considered their decision in purely political terms. A vote against impeachment would merely mean that the congressmen and -women would explicitly defy the position of the congressional leadership. But that meant a solid chance of retribution from the domineering right wing of the Republican party. The far right could easily run a primary challenger in 2000 or halt campaign contributions to the incumbents.


Almost immediately, five Republicans declared their opposition to impeachment. These included: Christopher Shays of Connecticut, Mark E. Souder of Indiana, Amo Houghton of New York, Peter King of New York, and Jack Quinn of New York. But the key to a Clinton victory was to convince the undecided GOP members: Stephen Horn of California whose district was dominated by moderate voters; James Rogan of California who barely won reelection in 1998; Jay Dickey of Arkansas whose vote against his home-state president could upset his constituents; Nancy Johnson of Connecticut who was criticized in the past for ties to GOP leaders; C.W. Bill Young of Florida who had a majority of voters in his district backing Clinton in 1992 and 1996; E. Clay Shaw Jr. of Florida whose district was becoming less conservative than he; John Edward Porter of Illinois whose well-educated constituents showed little interest in impeachment; Jerry Weller of Illinois whose district voted for Clinton; James A. Leach of Iowa who was seen as a maverick; Jim Nussle of Iowa who had a large plurality of Democrats in his district; Anne Northup of Kentucky whose district included a large population of blacks and who were overwhelmingly opposed to impeachment; Constance Morella of Maryland who carried the suburban Washington district by large margins in 1992 and 1996; Charles Bass of New Hampshire where Clinton was highly popular; Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey who had unseated a long-time Democrat in 1994; Michael P. Forbes of New York who faced many Democratic voters in his Long Island district; Benjamin Gilman of New York who was a long-time incumbent known for his moderate record; Rick Lazio of New York where Clinton lost in 1992 but won in 1996 by 20 percentage points; James Walsh of New York whose showing was weak in the midterm election; Jack Metcalf of Washington who represented a swing district that Clinton carried twice; and Robert Ney of Ohio who had strong labor influence.




On the eve of the House debate on impeachment, Clinton launched a cruise missile attack on Iraq. Momentarily, the House proceedings were delayed a few days. House speaker-designate Livingston said that the House vote on a resolution in support of American troops in the Middle East. But he offered no direct support for the president. Livingston said, "We support our troops. As to the matter of timing, we would leave that to the best judgment of the American people." However, Senate Majority Leader Lott lashed out against the president and took the unprecedented step of refusing to back a military action initiated by the president and challenging his motives. Lott said, "While I have been assured by administration officials that there is no connection with the impeachment process in the House of Representatives, I cannot support this military action in the Persian Gulf at this time. Both the timing and the policy are subject to question."


White House officials countered by denying the charge that the politics of impeachment dictated the timing of the military strike. National Security adviser Sandy Berger said, "It is an action taken by the president solely on a basis of his best judgment of what is in the national security interests of the United States, both with respect to the action and the swiftness with which he acted." Defense Secretary William Cohen added, "I am prepared to place 30 years of public service on the line to say the only factor that was important in this decision is what is in the American people's best interest. There were no other factors."


While Lott was challenging the motives behind the military strikes, other Republicans rallied behind the president's decision to launch them. The issue opened deep divisions within the House GOP leadership. Some Republican lawmakers saw the issue as the first big test for Livingston, while hard-liners bitterly opposed the delay of the impeachment hearings. Republican Congresswoman Marge Roukema of New Jersey said, "It's exhibit A on how much credibility the president has lost that we're even asking, is this ‘Wag the Dog?’ "


In a closed-door briefing by Cohen for members of Congress, House Majority Whip DeLay, an overt opponent of the president, wanted to know whether there is any national security reason why the House cannot proceed with impeachment. Democratic lawmakers rallied behind Clinton's action. House Minority Leader Gephardt said, "We believe the president acted correctly and responsibly."


The criticism from Lott and other hard-line Republicans represented both a dramatic escalation in the impeachment struggle and the unprecedented challenge to a president's motives during a foreign policy crisis. House Majority Leader Dick Armey of Texas said, "After months of lies, the president has given millions of people around the world reason to doubt that he has sent Americans into battle for the right reasons. Whatever happens, it will take years to repair the damage President Clinton has done to his office and his country." Lawrence Eagleburger, a secretary of State under President

Bush, said that the timing of the attack "stinks to high heaven" and argued that all of Clinton's future foreign policy decisions could fall under the same cloud. He continued, "As long as this mess goes on, there are going to be challenges to every single thing the president decides to do."


After the air attacks in Sudan and Afghanistan, Clinton told the American people that they had been carried out in response to the terrorist bombings on American embassies in Tanzania and Kenya. The president announced that Bin Laden was the architect of the bombings and that his bases in Afghanistan had been targeted. Some American cruise missiles went astray and landed in neighboring Pakistan. Several weeks later, Pakistani officials announced that they had in custody key suspects in the attacks on the American embassies. However, the Pakistani government released them in defiance over the cruise missiles which crashed in their country.


Clinton stated that the attack on a "chemical plant" in Sudan -- next door to Kenya -- was carried out since there was proof that biological and chemical weapons were being manufactured. Yet, the White House could show no concrete evidence to substantiate this allegation.




SEXUAL McCARTHYISM AND LARRY FLYNT. The first Republican to admit an adulterous affair was Hyde. He conceded that he carried on a sexual affair for five years with a married mother of three, leading to the breakup of the woman's family. Then on the eve of the House vote, speaker- designate Bob Livingston disclosed his own sexual infidelities, telling fellow Republicans he had "on occasion strayed from my marriage." The following day he announced that he would not accept the speakership position and that he would resign his seat in the House within six months. Livingston became another victim of inquiries into the personal lives of government officials -- which began less than a year before when Starr made the decision to launch an investigation into the president’s sexual behavior after he uncovered no illegalities carried out by Clinton in Whitewater, Filegate, and Travelgate. Livingston's disclosure followed similar confessions of affairs by Congressman Hyde, Congressman Burton, and also Congresswoman Helen Chenoweth of Idaho.


Amazingly, his colleagues in a closed-door meeting gave him a standing ovation of support for a disclosure which he never would have made had the media never known. His colleagues offered support for him to still become the House's next speaker. Several Republicans all but accused allies of the president of targeting Livingston. Congressman Brian Bilbray of California said, "Anyone who is seen as a threat to the administration is immediately attacked."


Larry Flynt, publisher of Hustler magazine, was preparing an article about Livingston's personal life. Flynt told The Associated Press that his magazine had found four women claiming to have had affairs with Livingston after Hustler offered a reward of up to $1 million to women who could prove they had sex with members of Congress. He did not identify them but said some were from Livingston's home district and one was from the Washington D.C. area. Livingston's statement claimed there were "individuals working together with the media" investigating his personal background to exploit during the impeachment proceedings.


Livingston agreed with the president’s earlier remarks that a Senate trial would impede the business of the government and said that Clinton had "the power" to avoid that and called on him to "resign your post." Democrats in the chamber countered by yelling, "No! No!" A few banged their fists on the table and shouted, "You resign! You resign!" And Livingston did just that. He responded, "I'm willing to heed my own words," and that sent an electric ripple through the chambers. Livingston said he would not stand for election as speaker when the next House was sworn in the following month and that after another six months would resign his seat altogether.

Gephardt praised Livingston as "worthy and good and honorable man" and called his move "a terrible capitulation to the negative forces" that was tearing at the body politic. Gephardt continued, "I pray with all my heart that he will reconsider this decision," and that was followed by a standing ovation by both sides of the aisle. Livingston said nothing but nodded acknowledgement of the applause.


One of Hyde’s staunchest lieutenants on the Judiciary Committee, Georgia Congressman Bob Barr, became the second high government official to be "Larry Flynted." Flynt accused him of of hypocrisy for refusing to answer questions in a divorce proceeding about his relationship with the woman who eventually became his third wife. The Hustler publisher cited as proof an affidavit from ex-wife Gail Barr when they were divorced in 1986. Bob and Gail Barr first met while both worked as analysts for the CIA. Ten years later, he divorced Gail Barr and married his second who reported the allegations against him to Hustler magazine in 1999. Flynt contrasted Barr's invocation of a judicial privilege under Georgia law with the congressman's harsh criticism of Clinton for evasive testimony under oath about his relationship with Lewinsky.


Gail Barr swore that Barr began seeing the woman who would become his third wife, Jeri, before his second marriage ended. When Gail Barr became pregnant, she said in her affidavit, "When I became pregnant the third time, I was 38 years old, concerned with health complications the pregnancy might present, and Bob's (legal) practice was slow, and he was not home much. We did not have any health insurance. I asked Bob what we should do, whether I should have an abortion. He said it was entirely my decision and that I should do whatever I wanted to do."


Yet, Barr had led an anti-abortion battle in Congress, no matter the circumstance -- rape, incest, and when the mother's life is at stake. Barr was the principal author of the Defense of Marriage Act, denying the states the right to recognize homosexual marriage. He argued that if homosexual unions were accepted, "The very foundations of our society are in danger of being burned. The flames of hedonism, the flames of narcissism, the flames of self-centered morality are licking at the very foundations of our society: the family unit." Barr also commented, "America will not be the first country in the world that throws the concept of marriage out the window." Barr also voted to repeal the ban on sales of semiautomatic assault weapons. He has supported a declaration making English the official language of the United States.


Gail Barr concluded, "It is evident to me that Bob was having an affair with Jeri before Bob and I were divorced. In September of 1985, I was helping out as secretary in Bob's law office. He had me call to make luncheon arrangements with (Jeri). Obviously, at the time, I did not realize Bob was having a romantic relationship with this woman. Friends would tell me that they saw Bob and Jeri holding hands at the mall or in restaurants." During their divorce proceedings, according to Gail Barr, Barr was deposed and declined to answer questions about whether he had committed adultery.


Barr quickly took the offensive, blasting Flynt and the White House for conspiring against him. Still he did not deny the charge of adultery, saying merely that his refusal to answer questions under oath was not the same as perjury. Barr responded, "I've never perjured myself. ... I am deeply saddened that Larry Flynt's money has been used in an attempt to drive a wedge between the mother and father of two wonderful boys who deserve better than to become involved in the politics of personal destruction." He said he would not add to these efforts "by discussing our personal lives in any way, shape or form with the news media."


REPUBLICAN LINKS TO RACIST ORGANIZATIONS. The Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC) grew out of the old segregationist White Citizens Councils of the South and maintains its headquarters in St. Louis. The organization promotes views that interracial marriage amounts to white genocide and that Abraham Lincoln was elected by socialists and communists. The CCC webpage stated: "Take 10 bottles of milk to represent all humans on earth. Nine of them will be chocolate and only one white. Now mix all those bottles together and you have gotten rid of that troublesome bottle of white milk. There too is the way to get rid of the world of whites. Convince them to mix their few genes with the genes of the many. Genocide via the bedroom chamber is as long lasting as genocide via war."


The CCC is opposed to quotas, forced busing and other racial policies. Yet the group aggressively promotes the controversial views of its leaders. For example, "H. Millard," a columnist published by the council's webpage, wrote that if whites continue to allow heavy immigration and racial mixing, they will become part of "a slimy brown mass of glop." In the group's quarterly newsletter, editor Fred Jennings wrote in 1997: "Is it racist to say that it is legally and morally wrong for government to force a mixing of the races to produce a mongrel race?"


One of its leaders, Gordon Lee Baum of St. Louis, said, "It is legitimate to be concerned that the U.S. will soon have a non-white majority. I think the majority of American people, if they understand what this is all about, would not be in favor of it." Baum said that "currently 90 percent of immigrants to the U.S. come from a Third World country. Do we want the U.S. to become a Third World country?"


Three members of Congress -- Barr, Lott, and Helms -- have been linked to the CCC. When it was reported that the two members of Congress had links to the CCC, they quickly distanced themselves from the racist group. Lott and Barr lied about their ties to the CCC, an involvement that betrayed their oaths to uphold the equal rights guaranteed by the Constitution. Between 1989 and 1998, Barr attended several CCC meetings. In early 1998 he was the keynote speaker at the annual CCC in Charleston, South Carolina on June 6, 1998. Although Barr sat through a seminar before addressing the CCC, he denied knowledge of what the organization stands for. In a disclaimer, he acknowledged that "the group does harbor some very unusual views that neither I nor any member of Congress endorse (sic)." Barr claimed that he would not have attended the meeting had he known of its segregationist views.


Helms never attended CCC meetings, but he claimed that he never endorsed the racist organization. Lott spoke at least numerous meetings and on one occasion received an award. Lott denied any direct knowledge of the group until photographs turned up in the Citizens Informer of his appearance at the group’s gatherings. One photograph showed Lott delivering a keynote address. Then Lott claimed that he only vaguely remembered as a House member being invited to an event which was attended by two of the council’s members. Another photograph showed Lott and Baum and other CCC leaders "meeting privately" in Lott’s office. Lott once endorsed the group as a "needed" organization to "help protect our flag, Constitution, and other symbols of freedom" from the "dark forces."


Lott had a long history with the CCC. Arnie Watson, his favorite uncle at the age of 89, was a member since its inception. Watson said, "The Bible says every race should stay within the bounds of its habitat." He claimed that he never recalled discussing the CCC’s agenda with Lott, but he did state that Lott had been an honorary member since his days in the House. However, Lott contended that he never accepted any kind of membership.


RNC Chairman Jim Nicholson called on Republicans who are members of the CCC. Nicholson said, "It has come to my attention that an RNC member, Buddy Witherspoon (of South Carolina), is a ember of the CCC. I have urged Mr. Witherspoon to resign from that group and I will continue to use my good offices to persuade Mr. Witherspoon that a member of the party of [Abraham] Lincoln should not belong to such an organization." Witherspoon said that he "would not resign until I have the opportunity to talk with them (his fellow council members)." He also claimed that he had no knowledge of some of the controversial racial views of the organization's leaders and had not seen the material on the council's webpage.


In addition to Witherspoon, another prominent South Carolina Republican, state Representative Charles Sharpe, is a member of the CCC. Bill Lord, Mississippi senior field officer of the CCC, said that 34 members of the state legislature there have been members and that most are Democrats.


Additionally, Chief Justice Rehnquist and Senate President Pro Tem Strom Thurmond have a well documented history of supporting segregation. Before he was appointed to the Supreme Court, Rehnquist was the leader of Operation Eagle Eye which the Arizona Republic described as "a flying squad of GOP lawyers that swept through south Phoenix to question the right of minority voters to cast their ballots. Thurmond ran for president in 1948 on the segregationist Dixiecrat ticket.




December 19, 1998 was a day which went down in infamy -- at least for William Jefferson Clinton. Despite Clinton’s heavy lobbying, nearly all the "swing" Republicans were persuaded to stay within the GOP camp and voted for impeachment. Just two days before the House vote, Clinton knew that his impeachment was a fait accompli, and his team began its lobbying efforts among members of the Senators. The House impeached the president for only the second time in American history, charging William Jefferson Clinton with "high crimes and misdemeanors" for lying under oath and obstructing justice in an attempt to cover up an Oval Office affair with Lewinsky.


The vote to impeach the president for obstruction of justice in trying to cover up his affair with Lewinsky by inducing her and others to lie was narrower, 221-212. Twelve Republicans, apparently less persuaded by the evidence on this charge, voted against the impeachment charge but five Democrats again voted in favor. Two other charges were voted down. An accusation of perjury in the Jones lawsuit was rejected, 229-205, with 28 Republicans breaking ranks with their leaders. Some of them said that perjury in a civil case was not serious enough for impeachment, even if perjury before the grand jury in August was. Five Democrats voted to impeach. That vote came before the obstruction charge was approved.


Finally, the House overwhelmingly rejected an accusation of abuse of power, accusing him of perjury in his answers to 81 questions the Judiciary Committee had sent him in hope that he would admit lying. The vote was 285-148. Eighty-one Republicans defected from their party; only one Democrat deserted his.


THE GOP STALLS ON A CENSURESHIP VOTE. After the impeachment votes, Democrats immediately proposed a resolution to censure the president. However, Republican leadership decided to block the vote on the floor, and about half of the 206 Democrats stalked out of the House chamber in protest. The attempt by Democrats was voted down by a 230-204 vote in which only two Republicans sided with their adversaries.




September 9, 1998: Independent Counsel Starr delivered his report to Congress, claiming that there was "credible" evidence to impeach the president.

September 11, 1998: The House voted to release the entire Starr report.


September 18, 1998: The House voted to release Clinton's August videotaped testimony to the grand jury.


September 19, 1998: The House prepared another 2,800 pages of accompanying information for release. About 120 references were deleted.


September 21, 1998: Clinton's videotaped testimony was released.


October 5, 1998: The House Judiciary Committee opened up debate and then voted to go forward with the impeachment inquiry. The vote was 21-16, along party lines.

October 8, 1998: The House of Representatives voted 258-176 to move ahead with the impeachment inquiry.


October 30, 1998: Judge Norma Hollway Johnson ordered an investigation of Starr's office for security leaks.


November 3, 1998: Republicans suffered a setback in the midterm elections.


November 9, 1998: The House Judiciary Subcommittee called 19 Constitutional scholars to give their interpretations of impeachment.


November 13, 1998: Starr handed over evidence of his investigation of the Kathleen Willey sexual harassment charges to the House Judiciary Committee.


Clinton agreed to pay $850,000 to settle the Jones lawsuit.


November 19, 1998: ImpeChment hearings opened and Starr appeared before the House Judiciary Committee as its first witness.


November 27, 1998: Clinton returned his responses to 81 questions to the House Judiciary Committee. The House Judiciary Committee subpoenaed Daniel Gecker, Bruce Lindsey, Robert Bennett, and Nathan Landow.


December 1, 1998: The House Judiciary Committee subpoeaned FBI Director Louis Freeh,

and senior prosecutor Charles La Bella in matters pertaining to fund-raising in the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign.


December 3, 1998: Chairman Hyde decided to drop the probe into campaign fund-raising.


December 8, 1998: White House attorneys argued the president's case before the Judiciary Committee.


December 11-12: The House Judiciary Committee voted four articles of impeachment against Clinton while defeating a censure resolution.


December 16, 1998: The House debate on impeachment was postponed when Clinton ordered air strikes against Iraq.


December 19, 1998: The House voted to impeach Clinton on two of the four articles.