Part I: The Rule of Law, Oath of Office & To Tell The Truth, Perjury vs Lying
Former 9th Circuit Court Judge Shirley Hufstedler reveals the impact of the Special Prosecutor statute and comments on the process of prosecuting a sitting President without these hindrances.
Former Attorney General Richardson explains why, when ordered by President Nixon, he resigned rather than fire Special Prosecutor Cox
Former U.S. Attorney General Richard Kleindienst describes the conditions that caused him to resign after what he described as “the worst year of my life.”
Former Attorney General Meese discusses suing a sitting President, and the importance of the Oath of Office and the oath to tell the truth.
Attorney General Thornburgh defines the Rule of Law and claims that law enforcement has very little discretion as to which laws shall be enforced.
Judge Walsh claims appellate court judges often overstep their authority; that the oath to tell the truth establishes the gravity of the proceedings, and that Ken Starr misused his office in pursing the Lewinsky matter.
Former U.S. Attorney General Civiletti identifies one of the main problems with the Independent Counsel statute was the scope of Presidential investigation. Allegations of wrongdoing from Whitewater led Independent Counsel Ken Starr to widen his scope in the Clinton investigation.
Special Prosecutor Cox was adamant in his opinion regarding the Special Prosecutor Law. He defines the Rule of Law and perjury.
Whitewater Prosecutor Fiske claims the Oath of Office is less binding than the oath to tell the truth in court. Public officials cannot be sued for policy issues, but can be for perjury.
Part II: The Special Prosecutor Process
Former Attorney General Richardson claims that Kenneth Starr should never have been appointed as the prosecutor in an independent counsel role and that the Clinton investigation got out of control.
Former U.S. Attorney General Richard Kleindienst claims that the Independent Counsel, as an adjunct of the Department of Justice has not worked.
Attorney General Thornburgh opposes the independent counsel law passed in 1978. He claims the US Attorney General represents both the People and the President.
Special Prosecutor Cox explains the one fatal flaw in the independent counsel arrangement.
Former U.S. Attorney General Civiletti discusses the difficulties with the Special Prosecutor process and points out the ultimate safety against a rogue executive lies with the Congress and House of Representatives, which has the full power to investigate serious violations of the duty by the President.
Part III: The Forum
Because investigations by any prosecutor are supposed to be confidential, the panelists debate the media's impact on prosecutorial behavior.
Part IV: Lessons Learned
Part V: Why It Didn’t Work
Former U.S. Attorney General Meese explains why he thinks that the Independent Counsel has has not worked and was flawed from the start.