Judiciary Panel Member Quotes

Following are quotes from members of the House Judiciary Committee. The panel convened Monday to decide whether to begin a formal impeachment inquiry into President Clinton.
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"This will be an emotional process, a strenuous process, because feelings are high on all sides of this question. But the difficulties ahead can be surmounted with good will and an honest effort to do what is best for the country."

-- House Judiciary Committee Chairman Henry Hyde, R-Ill.

"I believe the American people have a deep sense of right and wrong, of fairness and of privacy, and I believe this investigation has offended those sensibilities. Who are we in this country and what is it that we stand for?

Do we want to have prosecutors with unlimited powers, accountable to no one, who will spend millions of dollars investigating a person's personal life, who then hauled before grand jury's every person of the opposite sex, the person has had contact with, who then record and release videos to the public of the grand jury questioning of the most private aspects of one's sex life?"

-- Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich.

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee
"We have not yet undertaken any of the responsibilities the Constitution imposes on us. Instead, we have let our agenda be completely driven by the views of an independent individual counsel mentioned nowhere in the Constitution. In Watergate, by contrast, this House did not begin a formal inquiry until after extensive investigation the Judiciary Committee and after Senate hearings."

-- Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Tex.

"I am speaking no longer as a chief investigative counsel, but rather as a citizen of the United States who happens to be a father and grandfather. To paraphrase St. Thomas, a man for all seasons. The laws of this country are from great barriers that protect the citizens from the winds of evil. If we permit one of those laws to fall, who will be able to stand in the winds that follow?"

-- Chief Republican Investigator David Schipper

"I have heard the independent counsel say, as majority counsel [David Schippers] just did some minutes ago, that the president should not be above the law, and yet, the referral would place him below the law that gives every American the right to assert legally accepted privileges without fearing being thrown out of his job."

-- Chief Democratic Investigator Abbe Lowell

Rep. Bill McCollum
"Even if it were only shown to us that the president lied under oathÂ…that is enough to impeach and for him to be thrown out of office."

-- Rep. Bill McCollum, R-Fla.

"No president should tarnish our values and our ideals."

-- Lamar Smith, R-Tex.