Monitor: The American press assesses Bill Clinton's future

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The Independent Culture
IT IS essential to reach a negotiated settlement which involves heavy censure and an unqualified admission of lying by Clinton. But it would be disruptive to remove him unless more serious crimes are proved. Great damage to the American political and legal system would ensue from adopting the argument that the nation's chief law enforcement officer can swear to tell the truth and then lie for political convenience, to cover affronts to the dignity of his office. All are understandable human impulses, but the rule of law is far too important for the country to grant an exemption for presidential foolishness.

The New York Times

THERE'S NOT much chance that Clinton is going to be removed from office. Republicans are conceding that they don't have the two-thirds majority needed in the Senate to send him packing. However, there's a very good chance that the House will vote to impeach him and bind him over for trial in the Senate. He deserves the humiliation of a trial at the very least.

Arkansas Democrat Gazette

CLINTON ACTS as if he's in just one more campaign, a battle to manipulate public opinion by demonising opponents. The White House calls the GOP impeachment move an effort to embarrass the President. Wrong. Mr Clinton is the embarrassment. Perhaps the pressure of an impeachment inquiry will make him confront his own demons.

The Providence Journal

THE IMPEACHMENT drama challenges us to consider the role of tradition in a constitutional democracy. The new left of the Sixties dispensed with the established order. It tossed away the ideal of common good and boasted instead about its own moral grandeur. It jettisoned the notion that politicians serve the public and installed the polar opposite: a government determined to enlighten taxpaying lumpen proletarians. Official Washington cares less about duty these days than the transformational power of the loophole. The President famously captured the trend when he tried to escape a perjury rap by telling prosecutors: "It depends on what the meaning of the word `is' is."

Detroit News