On Monday October fifth after a full day of historical debate, the House Judiciary Committee decided that there were grounds for President Bill Clinton to be impeached. The third presidential impeachment inquiry in history will be initiated due to the investigation of President Clinton’s relationship with Monica Lewinsky. The decision continues the nations political hype that has infected the nation since the independent council report was released.
With the media sucking in the country’s interest on the issue left and right with different tabloid approaches, the major question at hand is should all of this be happening. Should President Clinton be impeached? There is no question that the President did have an unacceptable relationship with Monica Lewinsky. The relationship was adulterous and scandalous and it is not something the President should have maintained in his spare time.
Even though his actions were not justifiably correct, my personal position to this point is that the President did not do enough wrong to be impeached from office. Recently, there has been considerable debate about what exactly are impeachable acts. The Constitution only refers to treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors when discussing impeachment. The founding father, Alexander Hamilton, wrote about the issue of impeachment in the Federalist Papers: No. 65. This is how he explained why someone may become subject to impeachment.
The subjects of jurisdiction are those offenses which proceed from the misconduct of public men, or, in other words, from the abuse or violation of some public trust. They are of a nature which may with peculiar propriety be denominated political, as they relate chiefly to injuries done immediately to the society itself. The prosecution of them, for this reason, will seldom fail to agitate the passions of the whole community, and to divide it into parties more or less friendly or inimical to the accused.
In many cases it will connect itself with the pre-existing factions, and will enlist all their animosities, partialities, influence, and interest on one side or on the other; and in such cases there will always be the greatest danger that the decision will be regulated more by the comparative strength of parties, than by the real demonstrations of innocence or guilt. In this situation President Clinton can not be convicted for what he did as much as lying about what he did from the testimony he gave.
If the President is found to have had committed perjury then there is not anyone that can help him. If the issue does end up in the final trial then it will be a battle for President Clinton. He will be brought up on some fifteen different charges that cover a wide array of conditions and events in the relationship with Miss Lewinsky. The charges include Clinton and Lewinsky’s statements under oath, concealment of gifts, the President encouraging Monica to file an affidavit and obstruction of justice in the Paula Jones case among other charges.
It is easy to see that the charges brought are just to try to damage the President in any way possible. The President should be held in the wrong for his actions, but as far as impeachment for anything else other than perjury it cannot possibly happen. A large case to be made is what should the public know about the President. I do not think the public should worry about the President’s sexual life, only if it is impeding the job that he is doing in office. There is no signs of the President faltering during this period.