Once upon a time, around 1998 there was a Democratic Party President Bill Clinton who was involved in an adulterous consensual affair with a 23 year old White House intern, Monica Lewinsky. A Special Prosecutor Kenneth Star who had been after President Clinton for years for other alleged misdeeds, discovered information about this dalliance, and he then pursued this story to where President Clinton lied about his indiscretion under oath. Because of this lie, the republican majority in the House filed for impeachment against President Clinton.
In December 1998, President Clinton was successfully impeached in the House on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice, beginning a trial in the Senate. Within weeks, the US Senate rejected the charges against President Clinton and voted against removing him from office.
Guess who assisted Kenneth Star in this endeavor. It was none other than the same Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh who became so righteously indignant over being questioned by US senators on the Senate Judiciary Committee on the 27th of September 2018, about the sexual assault allegations during high school that Dr. Christine Blasey Ford had lodged against him and his friend Mark Judge.
Remember that GOP Senator Lindsey Graham who during the 9/27/18 Senate Judiciary Committee hearing became so righteously indignant as he shouted at his democratic colleagues for having unnecessarily ruined a man’s life by bringing these scurrilous accusations against Judge Kavanaugh. He accused them of playing crass politics.
He was one of the House prosecutors during the Clinton impeachment proceedings when he issued these words, “You couldn’t live with yourself knowing that you were going to leave a perjuring judge on the bench,” he said in 1999. “Ladies and gentlemen, as hard as it may be for the same reasons, cleanse this office.”
In archival video shared one recent evening by MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell, Senator Graham, then a House of Representatives member, argued that a president can be removed “if this US Congress determines that your conduct as a public official is clearly out of bounds in your role . . . because impeachment is not about punishment. Impeachment is about cleansing the office. Impeachment is about restoring honor and integrity to the office.”
Karma has a way of coming back to haunt those who find it so easy to pass judgement on others while demonstrating little mercy.
Here is the rest of the story…
On September 27, 2018, Ephrat Livni of Quartz penned the following report, “How to handle sexual misconduct hearings, in Kavanaugh’s own words”
“If Kavanaugh is held to the standard he articulated for President Bill Clinton when working for the Office of Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr in 1998, during an investigation into the president’s relationship with the intern Monica Lewinsky, the hearings will not be easy. At the time, Kavanaugh authored a memo, entitled “Slack for the President?” The answer to the memo’s titular question was, basically, “No.” Kavanaugh wrote then:”
“After reflecting this evening, I’m strongly opposed to giving the President any “break” in the questioning regarding details of the Lewinsky relationship…I have tried hard to bend over backwards and to be fair to him and to think of all reasonable defenses to his pattern of behavior. In the end, I am convinced that there really are none. The idea of going easy on him at the questioning is thus abhorrent to me.”
“Twenty years ago, when Kavanaugh was contemplating Clinton’s affairs, he expressed a desire to get to the bottom of the misconduct and showed little mercy for the president. But he did show remarkable compassion for the young woman involved.”
“What has especially convinced me of the appropriateness of obtaining his ‘full and complete’ testimony regarding the details of his relationship are the sheer number of his wrongful acts,” Kavanaugh wrote of Clinton. “The President has disgraced his Office, the legal system, and the American people by having sex with a 23-year-old intern and turning her life into a shambles—callous and disgusting behavior that has somehow gotten lost in the shuffle.”
“Kavanaugh’s insistence in the memo that Clinton speak for his transgressions helped lead (paywall) to Clinton’s impeachment, ultimately. Now Kavanaugh himself is facing serious allegations of nonconsensual sexual misconduct by Christine Blasey Ford, Deborah Ramirez, and Julie Swetnick, and a fourth anonymous complaint arising from an alleged incident in 1998. These make his previous assessment of the president’s behavior all the more poignant. In 1998 Kavanaugh stated:”
“He should be made to account for all of that and to defend his actions. It may not be our job to impose sanctions —but it is our job to make his pattern of revolting behavior clear—piece by painful piece…I am mindful of the need for respect…But in my view, given what we know, the Office of the President will best be served by our gathering the full facts regarding the actions of this President so that Congress can decide whether the interests of the Presidency would best be served by having a new President.”
“In other words, Kavanaugh understands as well as anybody why people might be unhappy to see a man retain or attain power without the proper character for a lofty position. As the nominee himself noted two decades ago, “More to the point. Aren’t we failing to fulfill our duty to the American people if we willingly conspire with the President in an effort to conceal the true nature of his acts?”
“Perhaps then, he can sympathize with the many Americans who are demanding that Kavanaugh be able to live up to the standard he eloquently expressed himself 20 years ago, if he is to become a Supreme Court justice.”