I just have a thought and wonder if you
could advise me on it. When Starr's Grand Jury started out, I remember reading that, for
constitutional reasons, it could not deliver an indictment against President Clinton.
Since the main reason for the existence of a grand jury is to deliver an indictment, one
that cannot can't possibly be considered a grand jury. (I'm not a lawyer, so I may be
Response: You may not be wrong: One of the basic
principles of federal grand jury practice is that it is an abuse of the grand jury to use
a grand jury for any purpose other than to investigate (and charge, if charges are
warranted) the commission of federal crimes. I think one can infer from the conduct and
course of Starr's inquiry that he never intended to indict the President (or, possibly,
anyone), that he was using the grand jury to gather information for an impeachment. Since
an impeachment is a civil proceeding, it is an abuse of the grand jury process to use the
grand jury to gather evidence for an impeachment. . . but if no one raises the issue (and
the President's lawyers did not raise the issue), the abuse apparently goes unaddressed.
If Starr's "grand jury" turns out
not to be a real one, then how could the president be accused of lying to it? If he
cannot, then the first Article of Impeachment against him should be dropped and, possibly,
even the second article.
Response: This might work, even at this late date, but
I do not think the President's lawyers are going to raise the issue, for the same reasons
they chose not to raise it before.