The most controversial headlines today focus on the President of The United States, Bill Clinton. These headlines have nothing to do with his Foreign policies, deficit control, or the United States budget spending rather focus specifically on the Monica Lewinsky sex scandal and the impeachment hearings. Currently President Clinton faces impeachment hearings. Due to certain allegations caused by the so-called, “sex scandal”. In the history of the United States only two prior presidents faced impeachment. In both cases a conviction was never accomplished, making this particular case very sensitive.
Such an issue must be approached very carefully and treated with great importance. Andrew Johnson was the first president to be impeached, but he was not convicted by one vote(Sexton 89). Richard Nixon also faced impeachment hearings, but resigned his office as president to avoid the trial (Drew 79). The act of presidential impeachment being rare to our nation , the process itself needs to be further clarified and certain questions need to be answered. Is impeachment a remedy to the situation ? Should the president be impeached and convicted?
The impeachment process is part of the checks and balances of our government. The power of impeachment allows congress to remove the president out of office. In this particular case if Bill Clinton is convicted, he is thrown out of office, and Vice President Al Gore replaces him as President. The U. S. constitution explains impeachment as the removal from office for , and conviction of treason , or bribery , or other high crimes and misdemeanors (Gerberg ,28 ). Impeachment protects the citizens of the nations from a chief executive that is involved in criminal activities .
A committee in the House of Representatives brings forth allegations towards the president in the form of articles . If the majority of the house votes to impeach , then the senate tries the president and needs a two – third vote in order to convict ( Sexton 88 ). In the investigation against President Clinton the House approved impeachment hearings by a 258 – 176 vote (The Clinton-Lewinsky Scandal 1). A small percentage of democrats joined the republican majority (The Clinton-Lewinsky Scandal 1) .
The trial is then conducted by the senate, if the president is found guilty of the articles brought forth against him , he is forced out of the presidency. President Clinton’s impeachment investigations began with what was so called the Monica Lewinsky ” sex scandal ” . In 1997 the relationship between Monica Lewinsky began to unravel. The President of the United States is still considered a human being and makes mistakes . The activities of two consenting adults should not lie the concern of the public , but the individuals and their families .
President Clinton is not the first President to be nvolved in an affair , and will not be the last . If such action is a primary reason for impeachment , there were many presidents prior to Clinton who should have been impeached if that were the case. Making impeachment a very common issue . The public and congress should be mainly concerned with the president achieving his presidential duties . John F. Kennedy was one of the most liked presidents even after the public was aware of his affairs In President Clinton’s case a conspiracy against him may exist that resulted in the impeachment hearings.
After the tapes were released, Monica Lewinsky was shown to be the aggressor . In one of the tapes Monica Lewinsky repeats what she told the president , “you can’t refuse me, because I’m to cute and adorable. “(Finally, the world hears Lewinsky 2). The president is only a man , and when a female is throwing herself at him in that manner, it is very hard to resist. She also kept a stained dress for three years proving that her motivation was of a destructive nature. Monica Lewisky and her friend Linda Tripp gained a lot of fame and money due to this scandal. Monica Lewinsky was also scheduled to appear on Oprah as a guest on the show.
That appearance was not possible because of the monetary issue brought up by Lewinsky. Her main concern was the money and ruining the president’s reputation. It could also been perceived as a conspiracy because of the FBI involvement , and the reluctant Kenneth Starr. The FBI involvement was in the recording of Linda Tripp’s conversation with Lewinsky. Special prosecutor Starr wanted to ruin President Clinton from the beginning , and now he has his opportunity. After several years of investigating into the presidents history and coming out empty handed ,Starr finally had the largest sex scandal of the ninety’s.
The allegation of perjury is a very strong factor in the Impeachment trial. The president was believed to have lied on national television, when responding to the sex scandal. Any family man accused of such a scandal will most likely deny it as well. Imagine a family man with the stature of the president with everything to lose. The president should not go unpunished, but impeachment is not the answer. He later came clean and apologized to the American people. Whether or not he committed perjury is yet to be proven. Kenneth Starr wants to include the “White Water” scandal in the impeachment hearing.
The 1970’s Arkansas land deal which became an issue in Clinton’s earlier term. Impeachment of the president is more than an individual issue , but concern the entire nation in many aspects. President Clinton should not be impeached through the legal process due to the lack of evidence against him. First of all the “White Water” scandal came about earlier, and no proof of connecting the president was available. The “Sex Scandal ” issue should have never been exposed the way it was. The man is perceived as a good president and such a scandal should be irrelevant to the impeachment hearings.
Article II used in the Nixon impeachment process, the” abuse of power “was one of most importance influential article to that particular hearing. The abuse of power in the Nixon impeachment was very strong against him. The broad definition of the article ,, will show that President Clinton did not abuse his powers. The perjury charge will be difficult to use, due to the fact that Clinton did not use any details in his statements. In his perspective he did not lie under oath. He had a different connotation to the definition of sexual relation, to President Clinton oral sex did not constitute for sexual relations.
In his imagination sexual implied penetration among each other sex organs. Clinton made a mistake and should face the consequences, on the other hand impeachment and conviction seems improbable. In order for a president to be impeached the impeachment terms of the constitution must occur. It states that a president can only be impeached if he commits treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors . If the president is found guilty of perjury, which is a crime, but when compared to murder it is no longer a high crime.
The impeachment of our president is unlikely, and a waste of our government time and spending. If the president was to be impeached and convicted, it will take a negative impact on the nation as a whole. The presidency is not just a person but a branch of government. By convicting a branch of government we are slowly destroying the democracy that we stand for. The nation’s voter turnouts have been declining in the recent decays. Citizens have a lot of distrust toward politicians in general. If the president is to be impeached the gap between politicians and the citizens they represent will grow.
Which means less voter turnouts, and less interest in our government, breaking down our democracy. When the impeachment hearings proceed, the economy and the nation will be effected. Both branches of government, congress and the executive branch, will be overwhelmed by the hearings. The government process will take a long and subtle pause. The presidential and congressional tasks will be set aside. If either branch attempts to achieve certain tasks regardless to the hearings, the conflict and tension between both branches make it very difficult.
The preoccupation and the conflict also effect foreign policy, Since it depends on a measure of understanding between congress and the president (The big picture 1). Due to the lack of legislative and executive duties, the economy may take a negative approach. Since the president is serving the end of his second term, impeachment seems more destructive then helpful. Impeaching the president also takes negative circumstances for the Republican Party, that is so eager to impeach Clinton. If Clinton is to be impeached, then Al Gore will preside as president.
Al Gore is a very favorable candidate, and part of a successful presidential term, that he will finish instead of Clinton. Since the term is less then two years of office, Al Gore is eligible for three consecutive terms. Through out the history of this nation it was known that the president in office always has the better advantage over the other candidates in an election. The republicans might not even dream of sitting in the presidential seat for a ten-year period. The impeachment process at this time and date is unfavorable to all parties, whether Clinton deserves to be impeached or not.
President Clinton is one of the most influential men in the world, but yet he is still a man. A man like all other men lacking perfection and vulnerable to making mistakes. The true judge of his actions should be his spouse, not the rest of the world. He represents the people of the most powerful nation in the world. Why do we the people of this great nation amplify these scandals to destroy our own role model. In the history of the United States none of the presidents were officially impeached and convicted, why start now. President Clinton should finish his term and be remembered for the good president that he is.