Time: Tue Aug 05 19:37:22 1997
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Date: Tue, 05 Aug 1997 18:59:50 -0700
To: (Recipient list suppressed)
From: Paul Andrew Mitchell [address in tool bar]
Status: U

>         Sen. Arlen Specter, The Senate - July 25, 1997
>Mr. SPECTER. Mr. President, I have sought recognition to  comment
>briefly  on  the issue of independent counsel. Yesterday, I spoke
>about my view that independent counsel ought to be appointed  and
>the  fact that there appeared to be no chance of Attorney General
>Reno appointing an independent counsel, and  then  exploring  the
>alternatives of litigation and the alternative of an amendment to
>the independent counsel statute. I stated at  that  time  that  I
>intended  to pursue legislation to modify the independent counsel
>statute and had hoped to put it on  the  appropriations  bill  on
>Commerce,  State, Justice, and the Judiciary, but would not do so
>if it would tie up the bill.
>After consultation with the  distinguished  majority  leader  and
>others, it was apparent to me that such an amendment would tie up
>the bill and most probably provoke  a  filibuster  on  the  other
>side,  and  that, in fact, a unanimous-consent agreement had been
>proposed which was conditional on tabling any amendment  which  I
>might offer.
>In addition to  the  amendment  on  independent  counsel,  I  was
>considering,  along  with  my  distinguished  colleague,  Senator
>Hatch, offering a sense-of-the-Senate resolution calling for  the
>Attorney  General  to  appoint  independent  counsel.  But even a
>sense-of-the-Senate  resolution  would  have  provoked  a  likely
>filibuster  to  tie up the bill. So I did not proceed to do that,
>but  instead  filed  at  the  desk  yesterday   legislation   for
>independent counsel, after consultation with the majority leader,
>who said that if an opportunity presented itself that that matter
>might  be  called  up  as  early  as next week. That would not be
>certain because there are considerations as to what  will  happen
>with the reconciliation bill and the tax bill.
>In the alternative, after discussions  with  Senator  Hatch,  the
>alternative  has  been  considered  to have a sense-of-the-Senate
>resolution perhaps acted on next week, if there is  time.  It  is
>the last week before the recess. But that is problematical.
>Mr. President, I ask unanimous  consent  that  the  text  of  the
>sense-of-the-Senate resolution be printed in the Record.
>There being no objection, the material was ordered to be  printed
>in the Record, as follows:
>(a) Findings: The Congress finds that--
>(1) press reports appearing in the early Spring of 1997  reported
>that  the  FBI  and  the  Justice  Department  withheld  national
>security information the  Clinton  administration  and  President
>Clinton   regarding   information   pertaining  to  the  possible
>involvement by the Chinese government  in  seeking  to  influence
>both  the administration and some members of Congress in the 1996
>(2) President Clinton subsequently stated, in  reference  to  the
>failure  by  the  FBI  and the Justice Department to brief him on
>such  information  regarding  China  :  'There  are   significant
>national  security issues at stake here,' and further stated that
>'I believe I should have known';
>(3) there has been an acknowledgment by former White House  Chief
>of  Staff  Leon  Panetta  in  March  1997  that  there was indeed
>coordination between the White House and the  DNC  regarding  the
>expenditure of soft money for advertising;
>(4) the Attorney General in  her  appearance  before  the  Senate
>Judiciary  Committee  on  April  30, 1997 acknowledged a presumed
>coordination between President  Clinton  and  the  DNC  regarding
>campaign advertisements;
>(5) Richard Morris in his recent book, 'Behind the Oval  Office,'
>describes  his firsthand knowledge that 'the president became the
>day-to-day operational director of our [DNC] TV ad  campaign.  He
>worked  over  every  script,  watched each ad, ordered changes in
>every visual presentation and decided which ads  would  run  when
>and where;'
>(6) there have been conflicting and contradictory  statements  by
>the  Vice  President  regarding  the  timing  and  extent  of his
>knowledge of the nature of a fundraising event  at  the  Hsi  Lai
>Buddhist Temple near Los Angeles on April 29, 1996;
>(7) the independent counsel statute requires the Attorney General
>to  consider  the  specificity  of  information  provided and the
>credibility of the source of information pertaining to  potential
>violations  of  criminal  law  by  covered persons, including the
>President and the Vice President;
>(8) the independent counsel statute further requires the Attorney
>General  to  petition the court for appointment of an independent
>counsel  where  the  Attorney  General  finds  that  there  is  a
>reasonable  likelihood  that a violation of criminal law may have
>occurred involving a covered person;
>(9) the Attorney General has been  presented  with  specific  and
>credible  evidence pertaining to potential violations of criminal
>law by covered persons and there is a reasonable likelihood  that
>a violation of criminal law may have occurred involving a covered
>person; and
>(10) the Attorney General has abused her discretion by failing to
>petition the court for appointment of an independent counsel.
>(b) It is the Sense of  the  Senate  that  the  Attorney  General
>should  petition  the  court  immediately  for  appointment of an
>independent counsel to investigate the reasonable likelihood that
>a violation of criminal law may have occurred involving a covered
>person in the 1996 presidential federal election campaign.
>  Published in the Aug.  4, 1997 issue of The Washington Weekly
>  Copyright 1997 The Washington Weekly (http://www.federal.com)
>          Reposting permitted with this message intact

Paul Andrew Mitchell                 : Counselor at Law, federal witness
B.A., Political Science, UCLA;  M.S., Public Administration, U.C. Irvine

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