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Rep. DeLay's Remarks on Impeachment

By The Associated Press
Saturday, December 19, 1998; 11:28 a.m. EST

Text of comments by majority whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas, on articles of impeachment against President Clinton, as transcribed by the Federal Document Clearing House:

Thank you Mr. Speaker. I don't know if I can make this speech. But I'm going to try. You know, believe it or not, I've been very depressed about this whole proceeding. When I came to work yesterday it really hit me what we were about to do.

But, after this morning, it made me realize even more what this is all about. And I feel great about it because no matter, no matter how low we think we are, or depressed we are, this country shows us time and time again, how great it is.

There's no greater American in my mind, at least today, then Bob Livingston because he understood what this debate was all about. It was about honor, and decency and integrity and the truth.

Everything that we honor in this country.

It was also a debate about relativism versus absolute truth. The president's defenders has said that the president is morally reprehensible, that he is reckless, that he has violated the truth of the American people, lessened their esteem for the office of president and dishonored the office which they have entrusted him.

But that doesn't rise to the level of impeachment. What the defenders want to do is lower the standards by which we hold this president, and lower the standards, force our society by doing so. I cannot in good conscience after watching Newt Gingrich put the country, his caucus, his House above himself and resign, and I cannot stand before you watching Bob Livingston put his family, and I hope you'll think about his family, his friends, his House and his country above any ambitions that he may have.

He thought he could do a good job as speaker, and I think he would have. But for some it's no longer good enough to make a mistake, confess that mistake and accept the consequences of that mistake and change the way you live your life and keep moving and make a contribution to this country. And I think you ought to think about that, both sides.

So ladies and gentleman, we will proceed, we will elect another Speaker, this country will be better for it, and I can't say this strong enough, this is God's country, and I know he will bless America.

© Copyright 1998 The Associated Press

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