Monitor: US newspapers comment on the progress of President Clinton's Senate trial

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The Independent Culture
IT TURNED out that there was no depth to which this president would not blithely stoop to conquer, or at least to avoid defeat. And it turned out that there were people willing to aid the president in this dirty work. And it turned out that a largely Democratic press corps that was feeling queasy about its role in bringing down a Democratic president would grasp the excuse to broadcast the sexual secrets of Republicans. And so an ethical code that stood, battered and bruised but still surviving, is finally destroyed.

The Washington Post

AS THEY look at the impeachment spectacle, Americans do not see individuals sacrificing weekends and evenings to conduct the nation's business. They see people who care little for anything other than their desire to bring Clinton down or to protect him. Bill Clinton's fate is not yet decided. But the fate of those judging him has been. The widening gap between Washington and the rest of the country will not begin to close until Washington makes a greater effort to understand the values held so strongly by ordinary people.

USA Today

IMPEACHING A president carries different risks for the nation than impeaching one of several hundred federal judges. If the evidence supports the allegations of material perjury or obstruction of justice to the reasonable satisfaction of most senators, then the Senate has a duty to remove Bill Clinton from office. The historical consequences of sweeping such conduct under a congressional carpet would be too serious.

The Detroit News

THE PRESIDENT will survive; the partisans will gripe, and Kenneth Starr will try to keep his office open forever. Meanwhile, the public will be further alienated from a Congress totally out of touch with the hinterland. Instead of dissing (denigrating) polls (or trying to parse their political meaning) the Senate would be wiser to listen to the message that the pollees are sending: Enough already. This trial is silly, not historic. Listen now, or listen at the polls in 2000.

Philadelphia Inquirer