Clinton Statement on OIC Deal

ByABC News
January 19, 2001, 2:32 PM

Jan. 19, 2001 -- The following is the statement by President Clinton, read today by White House press secretary Jake Siewert. The statement is part of the deal between Clinton and Independent Counsel Robert Ray.

Today's announcement I'll have for you shortly bringscomplete closure to both the Office of the Independent Counselinvestigation and the Arkansas Bar Committee case without indictmentor disbarment. Neither the president's statement, nor the consentorder relates in any way to the president's grand jury testimony. Thepresident believes that that testimony was in no way evasive,misleading or false.

Today represents the conclusion of the Lewinsky investigation bythe Office of the Independent Counsel without the filing of anycriminal charges, the obtaining of any plea, or the acknowledgement ofany criminal conduct.

The issue in the disbarment lawsuit was always only aboutpunishment. The president conceded that his misleading and evasiveanswers in the Paula Jones deposition were properly subject tosanction, but did not agree that they merited disbarment. Thequestion was merely what kind of sanction, and the committee now hasformally acknowledged that this is not properly a disbarment case.Had the committee not attempted to disbar him, the president wouldhave settled this case long ago by accepting an appropriate sanction.

I'll now read a short statement by the president that we willmake available afterwards, and we will also have for you an exchangeof letters between the president's lawyer, David Kendall, and theOffice of the Independent Counsel, Robert Ray, which was memorializedthis morning. This is a statement by the president.

"Today, I signed a consent order in the lawsuit brought by theArkansas Committee on Professional Conduct which brings to an end thatproceeding.

"I have accepted a five-year suspension of my lawlicense, agreed to pay a $25,000 fine to cover counsel fees, andacknowledged a violation of one of the Arkansas model rules ofprofessional conduct because of testimony in my Paula Jones casedeposition. The disbarment suit will now be dismissed.