European Stars And Stripes Newspaper Archives Dec 19 1999, Page 9

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European Stars and Stripes (Newspaper) - December 19, 1999, Darmstadt, HesseSunday december 19, 1999 stars and stripes Page 9 after the impeachment where do we stand by William Neikirk Chicago Tribune Washington one year ago sunday the House of representatives braved the stiff head winds of Public opinion and voted to impeach president Clinton for lying and covering up his Oval of fice trysts with a Young intern Monica Lewinsky. The nation and the world were watching. Anger and partisanship ricocheted in the dark old Cham Ber. Democrats accused republicans of staging a coup. The gop accused democrats of defending a criminal. Both sides wondered what have we wrought on sunday this sad chapter in . History is a memory that most americans would prefer to forget. But while the crisis is Over and Clinton is still president the effects linger in american culture and politics in ways that Are Concrete Subtle and even surprising. In the Campaign for control of Congress in 2000, few members expect impeachment to be a Cen trial Issue except for an isolated race Here or there despite the fact it has been a huge Spur to fund raising. Jay Leno still gets laughs at Clinton s expense. Morality has moved to the top of the Agenda of Public concerns in part some speculate because of the scandal. A certain ill defined messiness still hangs in the air. While Ameri cans seem inclined to push the impeachment out of memory there is Little satisfaction or feeling that the system has somehow triumphed in the same Way that it did when Richard Nixon resigned Over watergate. Clinton s presidency and his legacy have been tarnished Al though his popularity remains Well above 50 percent. Some feel the presidency has been dam aged permanently by the Case while others say the office is de fined so sharply by its present occupant that any damage is Tempo Rary. Rep. Henry Hyde r-i11., chair analysis Man of the House judiciary com Mittee and a key figure in Clin ton s impeachment said his argument about upholding the Rule of Law in the Case was trumped by such factors As a Good Economy and a desire not to elevate a vice president who could run for of fice in 2000 As the incumbent president. The main figures Are still in the spotlight. Monica Lewinsky was Back in court last week in a Mary land state trial Over whether Linda Tripp violated the Law in secretly tape recording their conversations. Independent counsel Kenneth Starr is a frequent television guest vigorously defending him self against charges that he was a partisan prosecutor. Starr s report to Congress controversial for his inclusion of de Clinton Starr both for those words and a Clin ton fatigue that some say has developed now Dennis Hastert a mild mannered Man from Illinois is to his great Surprise the speaker of the House a Complete Accident of history. He was virtually anointed on the Day of Clinton s impeachment when the speaker designate Loui Siana s Bob Livingston stepped Down because of marital infidelity. Impeachment defined Hast a certain ill defined messiness still hangs in the air. While americans seem inclined to push the impeachment out of memory there is Little satisfaction or feeling that the system has some Ohio triumphed in the same Way that it did when Richard Nixon resigned Over watergate. Tails about Clinton s affair with Lewinsky also Drew fire because in the opinion of Many democrats it went too far in making a Case for impeachment. One Concrete result the inde pendent counsel Law was allowed to die. Presidential candidates for 2000 Are emphasizing that they will strive to set an example of morality and Fidelity if elected. Vice president Gore who gush singly praised Clinton after the impeachment vote could suffer since 1922 your turkish Gold concessionaire proudly presents it s Large selection of 14k and 18k Gold handmade jewelry Large selection of Puzzle rings seven Day ring four seasons chains and Bracelet customized cartouches and More. Visit our shops at Ramstein main mall Tel fax 49 637 1-439 1 9 Heidelberg pm shopping Cen Tertel fax 49 622 1 -6 1 9730 same building As a Lull Geek Uke Heath main mall Tel fax 44 1638-531551 an cafes concessionaire each specializes i adoptions from Russia China Vietnam and placements Are completed within 6-8months if you Are a . Citizen and would like to adopt Call Ron at 061277463 for a free information packet. Seminars for groups i Europe Are available upon our web site at european adoption consultants inc. An Ohio licensed adoption Agency Ert s first year Agenda. He immediately set about to repair the breach in personal and political relationships. I tried to get this Congress beyond impeachment and pass pieces of legislation. That was the Challenge i had he said. The speaker still is trying. The mood in the House has improved. The previous speaker Newt Gingrich resigned shortly after the november 1998 elections in which republicans saw their mar Gin in the House slide to but five seats chiefly because of the impeachment drive. As it turned out Gingrich was having an affair at the time he was criticizing Clinton. His divorce Case was settled last week. Rep. Christopher Shays r-conn., who voted against impeachment said his party Over played its hand in impeaching Clinton. Like Many others he preferred censure. We made Clin ton a sympathetic figure he said. We wasted an entire but where misfortune lies Opportunity rises both parties report that fund raising for the congressional elections have set records chiefly be cause the attempted impeach ment of a president energized the faithful. Rep. Ray Lahood r-i11., who presided Over the House session that Day said that when democrats criticized him he put out a fund raising letter to constituents that brought in $80,000. Rep. De Bryant r-tenn., a member of the House judiciary Lewinsky committee and one of the House managers who prosecuted the president said that whatever the results of the Case it sure As hell raised Money. I am getting record the House impeachment Man agers even have a political action committee. In one race where impeach ment might play a major role rep. James Rogan r-calif., faces a stiff Challenge from democratic state sen. Adam Schiff. Schiff said the incumbent is exploiting the impeachment Issue to raise a huge treasure Chest Leav ing him no other Choice but to go outside the District to raise funds. He added that he will attempt to show in the Campaign that Rogan aligned himself with right Wing forces in the House to vote for impeachment and has ignored the District s problems. Impeachment is largely an unflattering reminder of what re publicans stand for said Jim Jor Dan a spokesman for the demo cratic senatorial Campaign com Mittee. Jordan who was spokesman for the minority members of the House judiciary committee Dur ing impeachment said democratic fund raising is at a record rate. There s a real feeling among our activists that the barbarians Are at the Gate he said. In South Carolina Republican rep. Lindsey Graham who made some passionate speeches for Clinton s removal has become perhaps the most popular Politi Cian in the state and will run for the Senate the first Chance that he has even if it Means challenging popular former gop gov. Carroll Campbell. The net effects Are Subtle but Are there Graham said. South people Are ready to Start Over. The biggest loser is the vice Graham added that the scandal has had a big effect with women in general. They still have a lot of ill will toward the president. A lot believe he was pretty Abu a Usa today can Gallup poll released Friday showed a shift in Public opinion in the gop s favor about the House impeachment. Now 50 percent of americans say they approved of impeach ment and 49 percent opposed it. A year ago Only 35 percent approved and 63 percent opposed. At the same time 64 percent of people interviewed said impeach ment was harmful to the country. Time gives people an ability to reassess what the issues were and what the constitutional issues were before Congress Hastert said. Tripp Gingrich the effect on ethics and morality in the nation is hard to pin Down. Rushworth Kidder presi Dent of the Institute for global ethics said that Only this year did morality and ethical issues Rise to the top of concerns by Ameri cans. Impeachment could be one of the factors he said. Kidder said in the end con Gress failed to remove Clinton from office because while ethics and morality require obedience to the unenforceable Law is Obedi ence to the enforceable. In the end it slipped through their fingers because it was More than Legal. It was ethical and moral and these questions Are so much bigger. The Law went As far As it while democrats still paint the impeachment As a partisan action to oust a popular president re publicans assert that they had no other Choice but to do their constitutional duty Given the evidence submitted to them by Starr. Hyde said that one of his big Gest regrets was the impeach ment became a matter of party loyalty and that he was accused of conducting a partisan Kanga Roo court in the judiciary panel a charge he repeatedly denied. He wanted a censure measure put before the House that would have brought about a Compro Mise but gop leaders prevented this idea from being put on the floor. Rep. Tom Barrett d-wisc., a judiciary panel member tried to offer a censure Resolution but was rebuffed. Hardball politics reached a level i never thought it would reach in Washington he said. I thought someone in the Republican party would say this has become destructive it attained such biblical proportions in the Republican party that no one has been Able to put Down the said Graham it made the re publican base proud. We made a Case that reasonable people could t disagree As for Hyde the Veteran chair Man had entertained retiring after his current term but he said that impeachment guaranteed my decision to run again. 1 did t want to make it appear that this event triggered my Hyde compared impeachment with one other event in his life being out on the South China sea in 1945, in a Little Landing Craft in the midst of a typhoon. That made a lasting impression on William Neikirk is a Chicago Tribune staff writer in the Washington Bureau. Distributed by Knight Ridder Tribune information services

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