By David P. Schippers with Alan
Regnery Publishing, 338 pp, 2000
I read this book because I hoped to get
an insider's account of the Clinton impeachment in the House and Senate.
Schippers was the Chief Investigative Counsel for the House Judiciary
Committee (and a loyal Democrat who voted for Bill Clinton in 1992 and
1996) so I figured if anyone knew the inner machinations and political maneuverings,
it would be him.
I did learn a few things. For example,
then-Senate Majority Trent Lott did not want to touch an impeachment
trial. In fact, the Republican leadership, particularly in the Senate,
caved to every Democrat demand, in the vain hope of appearing bipartisan.
For all their trouble, Democrats still accused them of partisanship.
Most senators had no intention of
exercising fair and impartial justice, as they promised to do when sworn
in as jurors. Such a solemn oath meant nothing, not when preserving their
sacred seat in the Senate was at risk. Few senators wanted a real trial,
especially the Democrats, because if too much evidence emerged, then they
could not legitimately vote for acquittal. Better to go in with a closed
mind and conduct a sham trial (little more than Dueling Speeches) to keep
the Presidency in Democrat hands.
Other than that, though, Schippers
offers little new information. He includes his own speeches and testimony,
which are several pages long, to make up for his lack of material. The
whole book seems more like a vehicle to showcase David Schippers. He
relates his own meaningless braggadocio, such as flippant and defiant
remarks to the press, as if to tell the world what a big, bad, mean man he
There are better books about the Clinton