House Judiciary Committee chair Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) praised President Bill Clinton for his conduct during his impeachment in 1998, saying that he “physically gave his blood” during the investigation.
Nadler attempted to contrast Clinton’s willingness to participate with President Donald Trump’s refusal to assist the impeachment inquiry, which he and other Democrats claim amounts to obstructing Congress, which they say is an impeachable offense.
Nadler said: “In the 1974 impeachment proceedings, President [Richard] Nixon produced dozens of recordings. In 1998, President Clinton physically gave his blood. President Trump, by contrast, has refused to produce a single document and directed every witness not to testify.”
Clinton provided a sample of his DNA to Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr as he attempted to back up his claim that he had not, in fact, had “sexual relations” with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky.
Lewinsky had infamously preserved Clinton’s dried semen on her blue dress. The DNA ultimately tied Clinton to the dress.
Nadler’s claim about Nixon is also historically inaccurate. Nixon refused to turn over key tapes of White House conversations, and was ultimately compelled to do so by the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Trump White House has refused to participate in the impeachment inquiry for several reasons. These include that the inquiry began without congressional authorization; and that the rules the House eventually approved violated precedent from the Nixon and Clinton impeachments by denying the president and the minority procedural rights.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.