While no one came out of the Monica Lewinsky scandal looking good, David Schippers, the chief investigative counsel for the Clinton impeachment, wants to be sure Americans know just who contributed to the debacle and how. A trial attorney and a Democrat, Schippers was hired by Republican congressman Henry Hyde to lead an oversight investigation of the Justice Department, then was redirected to handle the impeachment. The quintessential honest man, Schippers was shocked, not so much by Clinton's actions (which he calls a far-reaching conspiracy to obstruct justice with perjury, lies, and witness tampering), but by Republican and Democratic politicians who sold out the impeachment process.
If you ever want to vote again, you might not want to know what went on behind the scenes in the Capitol Hill meat grinder leading up to and during the impeachment proceedings against William Jefferson Clinton.... Lies, cowardice, hypocrisy, cynicism, amorality, butt-covering--these were the squalid political body parts that, squeezed through the political processor, combined to make a mockery of the impeachment process.
Of course, Schippers does want you to know what happened, and he also wants you to vote--against those who made the mess. And so he names names--of Republican senators who refused to allow evidence on the floor, of the five Democratic congressmen who never examined the evidence, of the GOP senator who said, "You're not going to dump this garbage on us," and also of the politicians who did an honest job, or at least asked reasonable questions (such as Joseph Lieberman). Schippers also reveals the evidence he was building against the Clinton administration regarding illegal INS actions and Chinagate, but that he was forced to drop. He reviews the successful struggle to get a full hearing in the House and the "flat-out rigged ball game" in the Senate. He discusses the president's pattern of abuse and intimidation of women, including some highly disturbing information regarding Kathleen Willey, Juanita Broaddrick, and Dolly Kyle Browning.
Most of the documents related to the impeachment are still sealed, so Schippers's story is more diatribe than new information. Perhaps what this book confirms most (besides the ugly, self-serving side of politics) is the chasm between those trying Clinton, who firmly believed that his lying was destroying the structure of government, and those who felt that lying about sex was nobody's business. Schippers is clearly in the first camp: "I do not care what you are lying about. If you're the President of the United States and you lie under oath, you should be removed from office." --Lesley Reed