Why Was Clinton Impeached?

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William Jefferson ‘œBill’ Clinton had had a very inspiring political journey. Right from enjoying the status of the youngest governor of Arkansas at the age of 32 to later entering the White House as the 42nd President of the United States of America, he took every step with conviction and determination. However, modifying the famous quote from the movie, Spiderman, ‘œWith great power, comes great responsibility,’ Clinton’s political life proves that with power as great as that of the President of the United States, along with responsibilities comes great threat to the most prized possession’”image.

Impeachment of Clinton, which was substantiated in the House of Representatives, was based on many grave allegations that were later tried before 100 senators.

The Tapestry of Allegations

Reports state that United States Independent Counsel, Kenneth Winston (Ken) Starr, who along with an independent lawyer has also been a federal judge, published his investigation in the famous ‘œStarr Report.’ One name that attracted unwarranted and overplayed fame in the entire scandal was Monica Lewinsky. However, the investigation, if looked at closely, tracks the origin of the scandal back to the sexual harassment suit filed by a former Arkansas employee, Paula Jones, against the ‘œBoy Governor’’”as Clinton was then called’”in May, 1994. Also, some other names would unravel throughout the investigation. One was Kathleen Willy, a White House volunteer who, along with Ms. Jones and Ms. Lewinsky, was alleged to have intimate relations with Bill Clinton. Another was Linda Tripp, who served in the Bush office and later in Clinton’s office, who proved to be of precise importance in the investigation, as she was the one who facilitated significant and damaging tape recordings of herself and Monica Lewinsky’”wherein Ms. Lewinsky talked about her connection with the former President in much detail.

The Day That Counted

December 5, 1997, can be said to be a pivotal date in the entire scandal, as Jones’ lawyers presented a list of women to be deposed for Jones’ case with the name that would later be the reason for the impeachment, Monica Lewinsky. According to the Starr Report, Bill Clinton had several sexual encounters with Monica Lewinsky, which was further testified by Ms. Lewinsky’s rather detailed and graphic statements recorded by Kenneth Starr.

Perjury Charges

Clinton denied having a ‘œsexual affair’ with Lewinsky. The term ‘œsexual relations’ became of major importance, as the mere definition of it under Deposition Exhibit 1 was used to derive a specific testimony from the former President; Clinton flatly refused having any ‘œsexual relations’ with Lewinsky. Though he maintained that his testimony stood true to the definition of the term used, two months later President Clinton was held in civil contempt of Court and had his license to practice law suspended for five years in Arkansas and later by the United States Supreme Court.

Clinton Gives In

For months, there was only debate over Clinton’s alleged affair with Lewinsky. Nothing materialized as the only evidence were the tapes Linda Tripp provided, which could not be held against the President. Eventually, Lewinsky, given the transactional immunity offered to her, gave in and produced strong evidence facilitating discovery of Clinton’s DNA, proving him guilty. This proved even more damaging for Clinton, and having no other choice, he appeared on national television on August 17, 1998, and admitted to having an “improper physical relationship” with Monica Lewinsky.

Impeachment from the House of Representatives; Acquittal in the Senate

Following his false testimony and alleged hampering with Lewinsky’s testimony, President William Jefferson Clinton was impeached on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice, which was later tried for 21 days in the Senate. However, lacking the two-third majority vote to ‘œtake him out of office,’ Clinton was saved by the Democrats; and he thus came to be acquitted of all charges on February 12, 1999, on both the articles.

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