Lying under oath. Bad for Bill Clinton, okay for Kavanaugh?

Apparently.  Love this from Julian Zelizer:

Should Kavanaugh’s alleged perjury matter? It should—if lawmakers follow the Graham Rule.

Senator Lindsey Graham is among Kavanaugh’s most ardent defenders and will likely vote to confirm the judge no matter how many lies he may have told. Back in the 1990s, however, when he was in the House, Graham was at the head of the Republican brigade that came close to bringing down President Bill Clinton for having lied about his affair with a White House intern, Monica Lewinsky. Graham blasted those who dared to pretend that perjury didn’t rise to the level of a “high crime or misdemeanor,” and strongly suggested that lying under oath merited removal for any high-level government official, not just a president…

Most House Republicans agreed with Graham’s arguments about perjury. According to then–House Judiciary Committee Chairman Henry Hyde of Illinois: “When the president performs the public act of asking God to witness his promise to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, that is not trivial. Whether it’s a civil suit or before the grand jury, the significance of the oath cannot and must not be cheapened if our broad boast that we are a government of laws and not of men is to mean anything.”


About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State

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