Twenty Years Ago This Week


It was twenty years ago that Bill Clinton was impeached for lying under oath during a deposition in a civil suit related to a sexual harassment claim. The 1995 Blog takes a look back at that process and comes to the conclusion that it looks better now than it did twenty years ago.

Clinton lied under oath, and sought to impede justice in a sexual harassment lawsuit in which he was the defendant. The lawsuit was brought by Paula Jones, a former employee of the state of Arkansas who said that Clinton, while he was the state’s governor, crudely propositioned her at a hotel room in Little Rock.

During his deposition in the Jones lawsuit, Clinton was asked about Lewinsky. He denied having had sexual relations with her; he denied having been alone with her. Presiding at Clinton’s deposition, taken in January 1998, was a federal judge, Susan Webber Wright.

She was there at Clinton’s request, and she later found that Clinton had given “intentionally false” testimony at the “tainted deposition” and that his “false, misleading and evasive answers … were designed to obstruct the judicial process.”

The judge found Clinton in contempt, and the House of Representatives wound up impeaching him on one count of perjury and one count of obstruction of justice.

One may argue whether or not the Senate did the right thing by failing to convict, but looking back, it seems the House did the right thing by censuring Clinton’s lawless behavior.

Impeachment and the Democrats


The Daily Caller reports that Congresscritter Keith Ellison has noted that a Democrat-controlled House of Representatives could impeach a Republican-appointed Supreme Court justice. He’s correct. A handful of federal judges have been impeached by the House, and some convicted by the Senate.

Indeed, the Democrats could use one of their members as an expert to guide such a process. Before being elected to Congress, Rep. Alcee Hastings was impeached, convicted, and removed from his office as a U. S. District Judge.

Leadership on Impeachment


There’s a growing group among the Democrats in Congress agitating for the impeachment of President Trump. It may be that they are just throwing some political mud around as a form of self-promotion. OTOH, they may really believe that Trump should go. If the later is the case, they need to get themselves better organized. Not all of them were around for the Clinton impeachment 19 years ago, so they should pick a leader with some actual practical experience with the impeachment process. Alcee Hastings comes to mind.