The process of Presidential Removal is not a simple task. There are many variables to consider. One of these involves the issue of the Vice President. Albert Gore is an awfully dumb guy to leave in charge of the White House. Even for a few months.
Then there is the matter of pardons. Gerald Ford pardoned Richard Nixon. Which left the public to speculate what had actually happened during Watergate. This was bad for the political education of the country. What assurance is there that Al Gore will not pardon Bill Clinton? Mr. Clinton should be tried, convicted, and sent to prison. (Mr. Clinton apparently had this thought in mind when he proposed making drug rehabilitation a part of the prison experience.)
Jack Nelson of the Los Angeles Times reports that his sources say there will be no more Starr indictments before the election in November. And, moreover, for Starr to indict anyone would be playing politics. He apparently is reading from a movie script written by the White House. (In the final scene, Bill Clinton himself pilots an F-117 Stealth fighter and dramatically repels all the evil aliens who are attacking his Presidency via Whitewater, Fostergate, Filegate, and Toe-Suckgate.)
Jack Nelson is wrong on both accounts. More indictments are probable by the end of the month. Moreover, for Starr to deny the voters information relevant to a November decision would itself be playing politics. Voters should be fully informed as they prepare to cast their votes. As Barbara Streisand said of her $130,000 donation to the Democrats (read: "Bill Clinton re-election campaign"), "If you've got it, you can give it." And Starr's got it.
Bill and Hillary Clinton are giving Academy Award performances for the benefit of the public: holding hands as they exit the Presidential helicopter, appearing together at lavish Beverly Hills parties. In private they are not speaking to each other. Bill even got the information about Hillary's involvement with I3 second hand.
Bill Clinton's re-election campaign has turned into the most expensive in history. All the maintenance facilities and equipment for the F-117 Stealth fighters he sent to Kuwait have to go along also. Even if the planes never see battle, the expense of sending them over there and returning them will add up to several hundred million dollars. And Kuwait and Saudi Arabia will not be paying the bill, like they did last time.
A President can't issue a pardon to any friend or associate who has engaged in criminal acts, or to anyone connected to possible criminal acts of the President himself. So Susan McDougal, one of Bill Clinton's old flames as well as business partners, will not be receiving a pardon. Neither will James McDougal, or Jim Guy Tucker, or Web Hubbell, or Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Some have speculated that a sitting President cannot receive an indictment, but must be first impeached and removed from office. This turns out not to be true. A sitting President can be indicted.
Pat Robertson, a T.V. evangelist of sorts, tells his audience that Bill and Hillary Clinton will be indicted together. Mr. Robertson apparently doesn't understand Southern manners, which dictate that ladies come before gentlemen.
September 14, 1996
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