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Sun Apr 21, 2019, 09:12 AM

Trump tampered with witnesses. Senate Republicans voted to oust Bill Clinton for doing just that

Trump tampered with witnesses. These Senate Republicans voted to oust Bill Clinton for doing just that
Mueller’s report essentially accuses Trump of witness tampering – one of the offences Republicans impeached Clinton on. Here’s how they explained their votes
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/apr/20/mueller-report-impeachment-obstruction-bill-clinton-republicans?utm_term=RWRpdG9yaWFsX0d1YXJkaWFuVG9kYXlVUy0xOTA0MjE%3D&utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GuardianTodayUS&CMP=GTUS_email

Robert Mueller’s report effectively accused Donald Trump of obstructing justice by witness tampering, one of the offences that led Republicans to impeach Bill Clinton 20 years ago.

<<snip>>

Mitch McConnell, Kentucky

Following his deposition, the president had to decide what to do with his loyal secretary, Ms Betty Currie. And, again, the undisputed evidence shows that the president took the path of lies and deceit.
Contrary to federal obstruction of justice laws and contrary to judge Wright’s protective order … President Clinton left the deposition, went back to the White House and called Ms Currie at home to ask her to come to the White House the next day, which, I might add, was a Sunday.
… I am completely and utterly perplexed by those who argue that perjury and obstruction of justice are not high crimes and misdemeanors.

Senate floor, 12 February 1999

Chuck Grassley, Iowa

It is clear to me that the president committed serious crimes when he coached his secretary, Betty Currie, and when he misled his aides Sidney Blumenthal and John Podesta … These actions weren’t just outrageous and morally wrong. They were also illegal. They were a direct assault on the integrity of the judicial process.
Statement, 12 February 1999

Lindsey Graham, South Carolina

The question I have that needs to desperately be answered by somebody is – when he approached Ms Currie to coach her in the fashion he did, is that a crime? Because I don’t want people at home to be confused that they can do these things, because if they do what the president did, in my opinion, they will wind up in jail.
Interview with CNN, 27 January 1999

[N]obody because of their position in society has the right to cheat and to get somebody to lie for them, even as the president. That means we’re not a nation of men or kings. We’re a nation of laws, and that’s what this case has always been about to me … He turned the judicial system upside down, every way but loose. He sent his friends to lie for him. He lied for himself.

Speaking on the Senate floor while a House impeachment manager, 8 February 1999

<<snip>>

Richard Shelby, Alabama

Shelby said Clinton’s January 1998 meeting with Ms Currie, after returning from his own testimony in the Jones lawsuit, was a key factor in his decision to vote for conviction on the obstruction charge. House managers accused Clinton of using that meeting to try to influence Currie’s testimony.
‘That was a strong component,’ Shelby said. ‘But it’s not just one thing in the obstruction evidence. If you put it all together, I thought it was beyond a reasonable doubt.’

Associated Press report, 12 February 1999

Roy Blunt, Missouri

There is clear evidence that President Clinton committed perjury on two or more occasions, and urged others to obstruct justice. These are serious felonious acts that strike at the heart of our judicial system. Oaths taken in the American system of government are serious commitments to truth and the rule of law. Violating these oaths or causing others to impede the investigation into such acts are serious matters that meet the standard for impeachment.
House floor, 19 December 1998

Richard Burr, North Carolina

I believe the facts presented by the judiciary committee prove beyond a reasonable doubt that President Clinton repeatedly lied to a grand jury and encouraged a witness before that grand jury to provide false information. The United States is a nation of laws, not men. And I do not believe we can ignore the facts or disregard the constitution so that the president can be placed above the law.
Statement, 19 December 1998

<<snip>>

Rob Portman, Ohio

I believe the evidence of serious wrongdoing is simply too compelling to be swept aside. I am particularly troubled by the clear evidence of lying under oath in that it must be the bedrock of our judicial system.
I believe the long-term consequence to this country of not acting on these serious charges before us far outweigh the consequences of following what the constitution provides for and bringing this matter to trial in the United States Senate.

House floor, 18 December 1998

<<snip>>

John Thune, South Dakota

Our declaration of independence says it best. ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’ In America there is no emperor, and there is no Praetorian guard. There is one standard of justice that applies equally to all, and to say or do otherwise will undermine the most sacred of all American ideals.
President Clinton has committed federal crimes, and there must be a reckoning, or no American shall ever again be prosecuted for those same crimes.

House floor, 18 December 1998

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