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What Comes After Starr?

The saga of the president and the intern will soon move on to a new stage — the House of Representatives.

Independent counsel Kenneth Starr hasn't told Congress anything, but the language of the law is clear: He must "advise" the House if he turns up anything that "may constitute grounds for an impeachment." House Republicans have already given the task to the Judiciary Committee, just as was done with the Nixon impeachment.

Before that happens, Starr may decide to call Mr. Clinton back for more testimony. In his address to the nation Monday night, the president said that he was legally correct in his Paula Jones deposition. Starr will have to prove that the deposition given by Mr. Clinton was false.

"In that deposition, he said there were no sexual relations -- under that very tricky definition of what sexual relations are," says CBS News Legal Correspondent Kristin Jeannette-Meyers.

Because of the he-said-she-said nature of the investigation, Starr may also question Lewinsky again on the details of what happened between her and the president in order for the prosecutor to more clearly define the relationship.

"I think most of us anticipate it will be a truckload of documents," says Rep. Bill McCollum, a member of the House Judiciary Committee.

This time the chairman of that committee is Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill. Hyde is a 74-year-old, sharp-tongued conservative. He is regarded by Democrats as partisan but fair.

His staff will be led by David Schippers, a one-time prosecutor from Chicago and lifelong Democrat.

The Democrats have made Abbe Lowell, a veteran defense lawyer, their top staffer.

The Committee members will decide first if the evidence warrants a full inquiry.

"It might well be that after reviewing all this material, the House Judiciary Committee determines, like a prosecutor would, we're not going to go further," McCollum said.

But if a majority wants to go farther . . . the full House will vote on upgrading to an impeachment investigation.

"I think there would be hearings," said Susan Low Block, a Constitutional scholar at Georgetown University. "I think they would have to bring in a lot of people that are involved here. We would have re-enactment of a lot of what went on in the grand jury."

The Constitution is vague on what's impeachable, leaving great wriggle room for Congress. "The problem is we don't really know what a high crime and misdemeanor is," Bloch says.

If impeachment were voted in the House, the Senate would decide whether to convict and oust the president.

Starr probably will not try to prosecute Mr. Clinton while he's in office. There are too many legal questions. But there is no doubt Starr has the power to file criminal charges after the president has left office, regardless of how he leaves.

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