HONORS 195: Rhetoric of Impeachment; Fall, 1999, John Dewey Honors Program, College of Arts & Sciences, University of Vermont
Alfred C. Snider, Edwin W. Lawrence Professor of Forensics
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Henry Hyde has served on numerous committees and has participated in many of our nations most controversial issues over the past few decades. In this way, many have felt Hydes influence. In 1987, Hyde was a member of the Joint House-Senate Committee that investigated the Iran-Contra matter. In 1996, Hyde was the Chairman of the Republican Platform Committee at the National Convention, in San Diego. Most recently, Hyde served as the chief manager in the Impeachment of President Clinton during both the House and Senate proceedings. Henry Hyde is often heralded for the roles he has played in these events of national significance. From a political standpoint, Henry Hyde initially appears to be unflawedwhat he says he seems to believe, and what he believes he appears to say. Although his views are often unpopular, he portrays a politician of set moral and ethical values, a set of values could have augmented his rise to his rise to power in the United States Government.
Unfortunately, this proves not to be the case. In fact, a comparison of the Henry Hyde in the Iran-Contra Affair to the Henry Hyde who levied an all out impeachment on William Jefferson Clinton illustrates many disturbing patterns. The Henry Hyde, whose political image is so aesthetically strong, represents anything but a pillar of political ideology or ethical value. Instead, Henry Hyde emerges as having no regard for political consistency and as a politician whose underlying political platforms are dictated by partisanship. In this way, Hyde has shown a willingness to extend his political platforms to opposite extremes, all in the name of doing Republican power. The hypocrisy that arises in Henry Hydes political discourse is unsurpassed.
Due to his highly influential and esteemed role in our government I feel Henry Hydes behavior deserves to be criticized and the social implications should be understood. It is to this extent that I focus on the partisanship that dictates Henry Hydes every move and the hypocrisy that arises as a result.
In 1986, Henry Hyde defended the Reagan Administration and Oliver North against Independent Council investigations by all means possible. Throughout the tumult Hyde stood by their side refusing to allow a fellow Republican lose power without a fight. Due to circumstances that surrounded the Iran-Contra Affair, the Reagan Administration and Oliver North were under intense scrutiny. The generalities of the case involved the illegal sales of weapons to the Nicaraguan Contras. This weapon sale proceeded under the guidance of Oliver North who served in the National Security Council, in Nicaragua. The issue was further complicated by the indirect involvement of the CIA, which had set up a shadow operation with the NSC in Nicaragua. The CIA was using Oliver North as a go between for supporting the contras. Once these secret government operations became public it quickly became clear that the Reagan Administration potentially faced implication. The sale of arms to Nicaragua had been specifically prohibited under the Boland Amendment. (www.webcom.com ref. # 16) The Boland Amendment had been written in 1985 and prohibited any such support of arms, etc. to Nicaragua.
A Republican effort to paint the situation in a positive light revolved around finding loopholes in the Boland Amendment. Henry Hyde spearheaded this effort that attempted to use legal hairsplitting to redefine the Amendment.
For the purpose of this criticism it is necessary to understand the Constitutional and legal issues at hand in both events. In the Iran-Contra Affair allegations involved the direct sale of arms to Nicaragua, an act strictly prohibited under the Boland Amendment. The issue of whether, and to what extent, Oliver North had lied, under oath, before Congress was also important. Finally, there was issue of the obstruction of justiceOliver North had intentionally destroyed documents pertinent to the contra operation. (www.webcom.com ref # 16) Likewise, in the Impeachment Trial of President Clinton allegations involved President Clinton committing numerous acts of perjury and the obstruction of justice.
The underlying similarities between the cases are remarkable. However, as I will illustrate, Henry Hydes arguments in each case very different forms. The paths of Hydes discourses in the Iran-Contra Affair and the Impeachment of President Clinton diverge at the outset of each event. Immediately following Congress decision to conduct a full investigation of the Iran-Contra Affair Henry Hyde was on the defensive for the Reagan Administration. Hyde claimed that this secret US government operation was a manufactured plots aimed to tarnish the Reagan Administration. Hyde attempted to illustrate that the Reagan Administration was being victimized by a partisan battle. "There always has been a vested interest in the Democratic Party to point out in great detail the short comings of the Republican administration, and I dont expect that urge or impulse to diminish during the hearings." Hyde begged the Democrats not to let the investigation " deteriorate into an exercise of political cannibalism" (Bernstein 132).
Henry Hydes rhetoric was cavalier and indifferent to the fact that Constitutional law was at hand. In November 1986, during the early stages of the affair, Hyde was quick to claim, " there was no violation of the law the [actions were] unwise but not illegal. (Bernstein 123).
Eleven years later, at the outset of the impeachment proceedings Henry Hyde expressed a strangely different view on embarking on an investigation of President Clinton. The prospect of an impeachment investigation of President Clinton was an issue that Hyde was willing to tackle head on. Hydes discourse no longer included the finger pointing tactics he had previously employed. Hyde had a deeply vested interest in proceeding with the case " if the evidence does justify an inquiry, I will fulfill my oath of office and recommend a fuller investigation" (www.impeachmenthearings.com ref. #1)
Henry Hydes contrasting interests in the two cases are vivid. In 1986, Hyde attempted to sweep the issue from public interest by portraying it as a left-wing assault on the Reagan Administration. Conversely, in 1998 Hyde portrays the issue being of genuine importance to him. This feeling was conveyed in a letter he wrote to Rep. Conyers regarding the prospects of the case and how the events should proceed. "Delicate issues of constitutional law are involved. Those issues cannot be defined in detail in advance of full investigation of the facts we must await full development of the facts and understanding of the events to which those facts relate" (www.house.gov ref. # 17).
The relevance of the two statements is greatly enhanced when the circumstances that surrounded each situation are taken into account. Let us not forget that the impeachment trial stemmed from an attempted cover up of a sexual indiscretion. Conversely, the Iran-Contra affair was clearly an issue of immediate national security, national funds, and even human rights (Bernstein 138).
Henry Hydes willingness to disregard an issue of national is extremely disturbing. Peter Kornbluh, an expert on the Iran-Contra Affair, described Hydes conduct as " a flagrant and deliberate effort to violate and ignore explicit congressional law." (Bernstein 122). In my opinion, the only explanation for Hydes conduct is blatant partisanship.
Henry Hyde's main argument in the Iran-Contra Affair revolved around finding loopholes in the Boland Amendment. The Boland Amendment was written to prohibit the expenditure of funds by the CIA, Pentagon or " or any other agency or entity of the United States involved in intelligence activities [for supporting] directly or indirectly military or paramilitary operations in Nicaragua by any nation, organization, group, or individual." (Bernstein 118).
The Boland Amendment is clear and decisive, however, in attempts to dismiss any wrong doings by the Reagan Administration, Hyde attempted to create loopholes in the amendment and read between its lines. Hyde maintained that the National Security Council was not an intelligence agency and therefore not covered under the Boland Amendment. The CIA had been indirectly involved in Nicaragua but their position was as a "shadow operation." In this way, no criminal activity had occurred, according to Hyde.
Hydes view of the law in this situation took and extremely modern view. Hyde viewed the unwritten law to be more important than the written law. Hyde reinforced this view while dealing directly with Oliver North. During the Congressional investigation, it was discovered that Oliver North had repeatedly lied during testimony before congress in attempts to cover up the specifics surrounding the trial. It was also discovered that North had removed and destroyed documents pertaining to the affair. Under the written law Oliver North had undoubtedly committed a federal crimes. However, Hyde excused the actions, "All of us at some time confront conflicts between rights and duties, between choices that are evil and less evil, and one hardly exhausts moral imagination by labeling every untruth and every deception an outrage." Hyde proceeded to state, "We have all been sermonized how terrible lying is, and that is a given .But the end does not justify the meansit just seems to me is too simplistic when you have to deal with some very difficult, complex moral situations" (Kean 115).
Hydes statement implies that the circumstances surrounding a lie must be taken into consideration when determining the severity of a lie. Hyde illustrates that under certain situations lying is acceptable. Hydes feelings towards Norths conduct were so sincere, that he would later spearhead an effort for Norths immunity.
Contrast this Henry Hyde with the man who during the impeachment proceedings asked congress, "What does lying under oath do to the rule of the law? Do we still have a government of law and not of men? Does the law apply to some people with force and ferocity while the powerful are immune?" (web.lexis-nexis.com ref #15)
It seems that Hydes views on lying under oath took a drastic turn towards strict traditionalism in President Clintons Impeachment proceedings. Hyde no longer showed any interest in the circumstances surrounding the lie. In fact, during the impeachment he was solely interested in the written law, and under the written law President Clinton had committed perjury. On January 16, 1999, Hyde proclaimed: "Truth telling is the heart and soul of our justice system. I think the answer would have been clear to those who once pledged their sacred honor to the cause of liberty. The answer would have been clear to those who crafted the worlds most enduring written constitution." (Kean 114).
I find the paradoxes of Hydes rhetorical manipulation to be one of his most socially damaging qualities. The Iran-Contra Affair was arguably an issue of national security. However, Henry Hyde cleverly twisted the story to look like little more than a partisan battle. The impeachment trial of President Clinton was hardly an issue of national security or an issue of immediate danger to our Democracy. Yet Hyde painted this event as severely undermining democracy and the Constitution.
Many finer aspects of Henry Hydes rhetorical discourse exist that provide insight into the hypocrisy and partisanship of his politics. One such aspect is the tone that Henry Hyde incorporates into his rhetoric. During the impeachment trial Hyde portrayed himself as the "preserver of the Constitution." In this way, he expressed a noble, dutiful and often somber tone. Henry Hyde, in his opening remarks of the impeachment trial states, "We are brought together on this most solemn and historic occasion to perform important duties assigned to us by the Constitution" (web.lexis-nexis.com, ref. # 4) Through the language choices, most solemn, assigned, important duties, Hyde clearly portrays a duty that he has to fulfill. Additionally, he depicts the duty as neither fun, exciting, nor a promising chore. In fact, he illustrates it is a dreaded lonely process for which he would gladly due without.
These language choices are repeated on November 5, when Hyde referred to his " solemn duty " and the " requirements " of his position as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. "Let me assure you, no one on the Committee enjoys this task. Nothing could be further from the truth - conducting an inquiry of this nature is solemn, sober, serious business. There is nothing enjoyable about it" (www.house.gov ref. # 5). This tone serves as assurance to his audience that his purpose is pure. Arguably, no one would enjoy defacing the President, unless his or her motives were not for the well being of the country.
Not surprisingly, Hydes tone in the Iran-Contra Affair attempted to arouse a very different reaction in his audience. Instead of the somber tone, Hyde exhibited a fiery excitement regarding the investigation. His tone showed the investigation a fellow compatriot such as Oliver North was an atrocity. No man of great military stature deserved to undergo such scrutiny and questioning. In this way, it is clear to see that despite the fact the underlining truths were essentially the same in each case, Hyde adopts completely different tones to evoke different reactions from his audience. This attempt at audience manipulation lends credence to my belief that Hyde will resort to any means necessary in attempts to accomplish his personal partisan agenda.
Another subtlety of Henry Hydes rhetoric that sheds light onto his conniving way is the manner in which he structures a discourse to fit his underlying partisan motives. In the Iran-Contra Affair, Henry Hyde attempted to spin the story to appear as a political jousting matcha situation in which the Reagan Administration was the victim of a Democratic crackdown. To accomplish this goal Hyde attempted to spin the story very quickly. In spinning the story quickly, Hyde could more easily blend, blur, and misconstrue a situation to fit his needs. This is clearly seen in his analysis of the Boland Amendment. His analysis of this treaty was based upon the quick work of a White House Lawyer named Bretton Sciaroni. Sciaroni was a young and inexperienced lawyer who had few credentials showing he was fit to make a valid legal opinion on this issue. (Bernstein 119) Further support of Hydes attempt to spin the situation quickly was his demand for a " lean, mean, small [investigation] committee with as few malcontents as possible" (Kean 132). In creating a small investigation committee the depth of investigating would most likely be shallow and quick.
Conversely, during the impeachment trial, Hyde made a conscious effort to slow the pace of the proceedings. Hyde repeatedly stated that the impeachment proceedings would continue with " all deliberate speed" (web.lexis-nexis.com ref. # 11). In slowing the pace of the proceedings Hyde was better able to dissect, analyze, and nit-pick the fine details of the case. In this way, Hyde was able to ensure that President Clinton had crossed every T and dotted every I. Hyde claimed, "A rush to judgement does not serve the public interest" (www.impeachmenthearings.com ref. # 7).
Henry Hyde again showed that his partisan motives dictate his political agenda. . In the Iran-Contra Affair proceeding quickly represented the best way to slide a controversial event through a Congressional investigation. Conversely, proceeding slowly represented the best means for hanging President Clinton out to dry before the House Judiciary Committee.
It has become evident through analyzing Henry Hyde that he creates symbolic strategies for an event. Regardless of how these strategies may be politically, ethically, or socially abusive, Henry Hyde must have a way to his means. Partisan, one-sided power, dominates his mindset and his rhetorical strategies revolve around these means.
Throughout the impeachment trial Hyde attempted to lead his audience to believe that "The culture we are living in is becoming an ever-wider sewer" (www. amarillonet.com ref. # 8). Hyde claimed our nations sense of nationalism and pride has been ruined and that our moral and ethics have reached an all time low. In this way, Hyde indirectly showed that to not support the impeachment of President Clinton is to fit this hedonistic and morally unstable image. However, by supporting it well be doing our part in exposing the deepest underlying problem facing our country. Hyde expressed this sentiment during the Senate trial. "I wonder if after this culture war is over an America will survive thats worth fighting to defend" (www. About.com ref. # 9). Throughout the impeachment trial he attempted make the impeachment trial appear as a two-dimensional battlethe sides were black and white. (www.amarillonet.com ref. # 10). The battle scene was set as a cultural clash between Americans who followed a strict, God-fearing moral code, against those who did not. Hyde indirectly portrayed this group as godless, amoral hedonistsClinton and his supporters were painted as epitomizing this group.
One of Hydes strongest speeches took place before the Senate during the fifth day of impeachment hearings. On this instance Hyde rises the controversy of what it means to take an oath. "What is the significance of a false statement under oath? In a court proceeding, do you assume some trivial responsibility when you raise your right hand and swear to God to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth? And what of the Rule of Law? What does lying under oath do to the Rule of Law? Does the law apply to some people with force and ferocity while the powerful are immune? just perhaps, when the debate is over we will be closer to answering for our generation whether a nation conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal can long endure?" (web.lexis-nexis.com ref. # 11) Hyde attempted to cater to the American psyche and sense of nationalism by portraying Clinton as having a total disregard for the oath. Hyde attempted to rally support through these nationalistic means. Hyde maintained that allowing Clinton to lie under oath would set a dangerous precedent for the future of the country. In this sense he displaced the here and now aspect of the impeachment with the image of what was right for the future of our country. The clause "to tell the truth the whole truth and nothing but "evokes a sense of national pride for many Americans. If Clintons lying under this oath is tolerable, what precedents will this set for the future of this oath and for the children who will respect it in the future?
To drive home his point, Henry Hyde tells the story of Sir Thomas More. "More than four hundred fifty years ago, Sir Thomas More, former Lord Chancellor of England, was imprisoned in the Tower of London because he had, in the name of conscience, defied the absolute power of the King More was visited by his family, who tried to persuade him to speak the words of the oath that would save his life, even while, in his mind and hear, he held firm to his conviction that the King was in error. More refused. As he told his daughter, When a man takes an oath hes holding his own self in his hands. Like water. And if he opens his fingers thenhe neednt hope to find himself again" (web.lexis-nexis.com ref. # 12).
Interestingly, when Henry looked for a historical representation of Oliver North, who let us not forget lied numerous times under oath to Congress and embarked on numerous cover-up attempts, he chose to quote Thomas Jefferson. " A strict adherence to the written law is doubtless one of the highest duties of a good citizen, but it is not the highest on great occasions very good officers must be ready to risk himself in going beyond the strict line of [the] law" (Berstein 115).
In quoting Jefferson Hyde advocates that what makes a great leader is not necessarily their compliance with the strict laws that govern our actions. Instead, a great leader is someone who can read between the strict lines of the written law. Oliver Norths lying under oath in this way makes him a great leader. North felt lying to congress was best for the interest of the country despite a Constitutional obligation to " tell the truth and nothing but " For Norths willingness to "go beyond the written law, Hyde heralded him a valiant patriot. These completely different symbolic representations of similar events exhibit the atrocious hypocrisy that emerges in Henry Hydes politics.
Interesting facets of political hypocrisy develop in analyzing the situational truths that emerge between Henry Hyde and his audiences during the Iran-Contra Affair and the Impeachment of President Clinton. Through these two episodes of "Hydian-Politics" it becomes clear that Henry Hydes audience in the Iran-Contra Affair is completely different from that of the Impeachment Trial in terms of political ideology. How could the same politician appeal to polar opposite audiences?
According to a Gallop Poll conducted on February 19,1999, it is clear that Henry Hydes support during the impeachment trial was partisan and one sided. Of those surveyed that considered themselves "Republicans," approximately 55% had a favorable opinion of him. Conversely, of the Democrats surveyed 44% expressed an unfavorable impression of Henry Hyde. The Chairman also received extremely favorable reviews from those who considered themselves "conservatives." Nearly 43% of conservatives had a favorable opinion of him while only 13% expressed an unfavorable opinion. (web.lexis-nexis.com ref. # 13) According to this poll it appears clear that Henry Hyde enjoyed the greatest support from Conservative Republicans. Conversely, Liberal Democrats appeared most against his discourse. In this way Hyde framed his discourse towards the Conservative Republican audience in the Impeachment trial.
What I find disturbing is that the socio-political audience Hyde targeted in the Impeachment proceedings of President Clinton provides little insight into the socio-political group that he had targeted during the Iran-Contra Affair. Due to Henry Hydes willingness to put partisan politics before real political ideologies, he appears to have few genuine political beliefs. The fact that a conservative republican audience supported him in the impeachment trail was because their beliefs best represented his cause. As I will clearly show, the audience that identified with Henry Hyde in the Iran-Contra affair was completely different than that which identified with Hyde in the impeachment proceedings.
Although I was unable to find polls referring directly to Henry Hydes roll in the Iran-Contra Affair, the audience he was forced to target in order to accomplish his underlying goals can easily be isolated. In the Iran-Contra Affair, Hydes supporting audience believed in a loose and modern interpretation of both the Constitution and law. Such a socio-political description better describes a liberal Democrat than a conservative Republican. In fact, if we were to remove the partisan framework surrounding the Iran-Contra Affair, it could be argued that Hydes views were of a liberal democratic perspective. His loose interpretation of the Constitution contradicts quintessential Republican views. Undoubtedly, a politician of genuine Republican beliefs would have been advocating for the further investigation of Oliver North and President Reaganthat is if bipartisanship existed. From an ideological standpoint Hydes supporters were liberal Republicans at best, and more likely conservative Democrats.
It seems Henry Hyde double-crossed himself in the Iran-Contra Affair for the sole sake of preserving Republican power in the White House. Although his support for the Republican Party was undaunted, the platform of discourse he was forced to take was clearly more Democratic and liberal. In this manner, Hydes discourse appears to represent no consistent political ideology, but rather represents an extreme need for political power and partisanship.
It is interesting to note, that many Republican voiced opposition to Hydes discourse, perhaps they too saw his shortcomings. Republican Senator, Warren Rudmann stated, " if anyone thinks that the oath they took as a member of the United States Congress gave them some role as defender of anybody other than the truth [that person] either hasnt read the Constitution or doesnt understand it." (Kean 133).
I maintain that the audience Henry Hyde identifies with is not the result of common political ideologies. Instead, they share a common interest in raw political power. During the impeachment trial a letter appeared in the Free Republican that I believe represents Hydes true supporters. The writer introduces himself as,
first becom[ing] aware of the work you do when Americans regained our pride under the leadership of the greatest president in my lifetime, Ronald Wilson Reagan I am aware that you are receiving great numbers of messages pleading with you to go further into the facts surrounding the sordid affair which has become the President of the United States I am asking you to do something to demonstrate the support that you are getting from Americans like me across our nation Congressman Hyde, I am firmly convinced that William Jefferson Clinton should be impeached AND removed from office. The results of this years elections reinforce this and GIVE YOU A MANDATE to proceed, because the voters of the United States have elected a majority Republican congress DO NOT allow Democrats to OBSTRUCT AND DENY JUSTICE. We seek vengeance for the disgrace that has become our most treasured shrine n AmericaThe White House. Mr. Hyde, for this time in history, you are a most important man with a most important chargecleanse our land of this spectacle (www.freerepublic.com ref. # 14).
This letter clearly shows that Hydes most faithful supporters are radical Republicans who view situations solely based on power and influence. This letter screams tones of partisanship. The author speaks of America regaining pride that it once had under the greatest president of the time, Ronald Reagan. Not surprisingly, Reagan is also considered by many to be the most "Republican" president of our time. The author emphasizes that the results of a Republican majority being elected into Congress give mandate for Hyde to attain impeachment; "mandate" caries a sense of dire obligation and it seems evident that Hydes supporters felt it of dire importance to impeach President Clinton. In their opinion anything but impeachment would have fallen short of expectations. Likewise, I argue that anything short of complete acquittal of Oliver North and the Reagan Administration would have fallen short of expectations.
It is my feeling that Henry Hyde exercises his influence by keying in on the shortcomings of our American society. Hyde understands that most Americans are rather politically nieve and that they do not have the basis, much less the desire, to understand the underlying details of every political exploit. In this way, Henry Hyde is able to ignore hypocrisy in his politicshe knows few people will identify it.
In isolated situations, Henry Hyde effectively appears to possess the utmost and deepest political ideologies. However, this perception is deceiving. During the Impeachment Trial of President Clinton conservative Republicans supported Hyde. Conversely, he adopted a liberal democratic ideology in the Iran-Contra Affair. Most Americans are blind to the fact that every political move this man makes is based in whether it will gain power and influence for the Republican Party. The citizen who is unable to identify Hydes partisanship may easily be misconstrued into believing that Henry Hyde represents them. Hyde after all is a Representative; here in his title lays a description of his duty.
However, Henry Hyde does not actually represent you! If you identify with Hyde on an occasion it is because he feels that using your socio-political beliefs represents the best way to his means. Hyde did this in the Impeachment Trial and in the Iran-Contra Affair. Those Americans who actually truly believed that Oliver North and the Reagan Administration should have been protected under the law would have been outraged when Hyde levied an all out impeachment of President Clinton for attempting to hide behind the law.
It is my feeling that Hydes rhetorical tendencies deeply undermine our political system. The founding fathers of this country never envisioned a two-party political system. Yet, Henry Hyde has taken our system to new levels of partisanship. Hydes discourse has represented both extremes of political ideology, all in the name of maintaining partisan-power for "the Republicans."
One may argue that Hydes actions are the result of our two-party political system. In this manner, Hydes actions to maintain a Republican influence in Washington is beneficial to all who consider themselves "Republican." However, I ask what of political ethics? Does it exist, or has our system of government regressed to the point where politicians without obligation to ideological consistency are heralded? Henry Hyde utilizes every means possible to alter every aspect of his political persona. For this reason I have trouble lending credibility to his discourse. His rhetoric appears to follow no ethical, moral, or ideological code. In this sense, Henry Hydes rhetoric does little to benefit our political system or society.
Bernstein, Dennis. Kean Leslie. Henry Hydes Moral Universe. Common Courage Press: Monroe, ME 1999
ref. # 1-- www.impeachmenthearings.com/PressDocs/pressdocuments.htm)
ref. # 4--web.lexis-nexis.com (CIS Congressional Universe) "Capital Hill Hearing Testimony" January 14, 1999)
ref. # 5-- www.house.gov/judiciary/110598hyde.htm
ref. # 6-- www.house.gov/judiciary/110598hyde.htm
ref. # 7-- www.impeachmenthearings.com/PressDocs/pressdocuments.htm
ref. # 8-- www.amarillonet.com/storties/031899_wars.shtm
ref. # 9-- www.about.com "The New Faces of American Culture"
ref. # 10-- www.amarillonet.com/storties/031899_wars.shtm
ref. # 11-- web.lexis-nexis.com (CIS Congressional Universe) "Capital Hill Hearing Testimony" November 19, 1998
ref. # 12-- web.lexis-nexis.com (CIS Congressional Universe) "Capital Hill Hearing Testimony" January 14, 1999
ref. #13-- web.lexis-nexis.com/universe/docu 3e43d00523cc57690e.htm
ref #14-- www.freerepublic.com/forum/
ref. # 15-- web.lexis-nexis.com (CIS Congressional Universe) "Capital Hill Hearing Testimony" November 19, 1998
ref. # 16-- www.webcom.com/pinknioz/cover/icsummary.htm
ref. # 17-- www.house.gov/judiciary/111298.htm