The Office of the Independent Council (OIC) was tasked with the responsibility of producing substantial and credible evidence that would be used by the prosecution and Congress to impeach the president. From the beginning, the case against the president was weak. However, when it was revealed that Monica Lewinsky was interfering with witnesses and that she was prepared to give false witness under oath, the case gained some weight. The major arguments made by the persecution include the following. There was evidence that Clinton had spoken to Lewinsky about being subpoenaed to give evidence in the Jones case. Furthermore, a ‘sting tape’ was found that revealed a conversation between Lewinsky and Tripp about her affair with Clinton. Additionally, Clinton also sought to strongly influence the testimony of Betty Currie when she was to appear as a witness. He was reported to have suggested answers to her. In fact, he told her that it was critical that it be known that they she was never really alone with Lewinsky. Therefore, he was charged with abuse of office, perjury and interference with the administration of justice. The prosecutor stated that it is not a “question of who we hate; it's a question of what we love. And among the things we love are the rule of law, equal justice before the law, and honor in our public life".
During the trial the witnesses gave oral testimonies to the grand jury implicating Clinton. Lewinsky claimed that Clinton had had nine sexual encounters with her. In fact, she was transferred from her previous position because of her boss thought she was spending too much time with the President Clinton. The tapes recorded by Tripp, who was a colleague and friend of Lewinsky, about the affair between Clinton and Lewinsky were equally instrumental.. Another oral testimony was made by Tripp to the grand jury. She was a colleague and friend of Lewinsky. It is not clear what her motives were when she testified against the President. She met and talked to Lewinsky often face to face or over the phone. She wore a wire to record these conversations as instructed by Starr. She later gave these tapes to Starr and the media. In the tapes, Lewinsky had confessed of having an affair with Clinton at least 9 times. Seven of these encounters happened when the then First Lady Hillary Clinton was within the White House. She confessed that she had performed oral sex on Clinton and at times the he received calls during their intimacy.
There was also a lot of important physical evidence that was presented by the prosecution. These included the DNA test results, White House phone logs, transcripts of Lewinsky’s conversations and love notes written to Clinton by Lewinsky. On September 9, two vans filled with 36 boxes alleged to be the evidence of the affair were driven to Capitol Hill by Starr. A report was also leaked to the public through the internet detailing the convincing evidence of the affair. In the report, eleven counts were listed against Clinton. The report alleged that the he had committed perjury during his disposition in the Jones case. Additionally, there were also the count of abuse of office and the count of obstruction of justice The House Judiciary Committee voted along party lines to start the impeachment process. The process was politicized in the House Judiciary Committee. Members were loyal to their party consequently assuming their party positions. While Republicans asked questions designed to make the star witness adduce his case before the committee, Democrats, on the other hand, seemed to have decided to put him on trial. They asked him questions touching on his integrity, ethics and the ill-motive against Clinton and the Presidency. President Clinton was also required to give an account of the allegations on his affair and Lewinsky. He was also required to provide an explanation about his prior testimony. However, despite the fact that Clinton answered all the questions, most Republicans thought he had answered them in an unresponsive and quarrelsome way. In fact, he indicated in some instances that he did not recall anything. This angered the Republicans and they colluded to support the impeachment process. The House approved only two of the listed four articles against impeachment. The house in its wisdom rejected perjury allegations against the President and the article purporting that he had abused the powers of his office.
The closing statements of the case can be captured in the presentations in Senate by the House Manager Sensenbrenner. He elucidated facts, charts, video clips and timelines. The manager argued that President Clinton had participated in events designed to promote illegal obstruction of justice. He provided further arguments in support of perjury allegations. In addition to matters of evidence, the prosecution house manager canvased the question of whether the conduct of President Clinton had met the high Constitutional threshold of ‘high crime’ and thus qualified as a ground for removal. He argued that the case should not have been interpreted as a case of hatred for Clinton or his Presidency. More significantly, he argued that the senators and the public at large should have understood that the case was based on their love for the United States, equal justice for all, the rule of law and honor for public life. The senators moved a motion to dismiss the impeachment case against Clinton and it succeeded with 56 votes to 44.
Linder, Douglas O. "The Impeachment Trial of President William Clinton." 2005. The Famous Trials. 17 October 2013 <http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/clinton/clintontrialaccount.html>.
Posner, Richard A. An Affair of State: the investigation, impeachment, and trial of President Clinton. Chicago: Harvard University Press, 2009.