AUTHOR'S NOTE: I am grateful to Lou Fisher, Michael Genovese, and Robert Spitzer for their generous comments and suggestions.
The Law: The Clinton Impeachment: Untangling the Web of Conflicting Considerations
Version of Record online: 13 FEB 2004
Presidential Studies Quarterly
Volume 30, Issue 2, pages 360–374, June 2000
How to Cite
KASSOP, N. (2000), The Law: The Clinton Impeachment: Untangling the Web of Conflicting Considerations. Presidential Studies Quarterly, 30: 360–374. doi: 10.1111/j.0000-0000.2000.00116.x
- Issue online: 13 FEB 2004
- Version of Record online: 13 FEB 2004
- Cited By
Impeachment is a complex, tumultuous, and unpredictable process with multiple decision points where constitutional, legal, political, and institutional factors play equally critical and often irreconcilable roles. The Clinton impeachment illustrated that decisions at each step for each player produced benefits in one arena (e.g., political), but often at a cost in others (e.g., constitutional, institutional, or legal). Calculations (and miscalculations) were made by all players at every point. Ultimately, this vexing and inconsistent process may be exactly what the framers intended—to ensure that impeachments and removals would be rare and would succeed only when a slow, deliberative unfolding of tangled, decisional steps produced a bipartisan outcome.