As Webb Hubbell Walks, David Hale Talks - Feb. 12, 1997
McDougal Changing Tune On Clinton-Hale Meeting - Feb. 10, 1997
Starr To Lead Pepperdine School of Law
What does his impending departure mean for the Clintons?
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Feb. 17) -- In a move that sparked immediate questions about additional indictments, Whitewater special prosecutor Kenneth Starr is stepping aside to become the next dean of the Pepperdine University School of Law effective Aug. 1.
Starr has directed the criminal inquiry of President Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton for the past 2 1/2 years, but sources said it would be a mistake to read much into his decision to take the Pepperdine job.
The second special prosecutor to investigate Whitewater issues, Starr has six months before he leaves to make decisions about future indictments, the sources said. They also noted he has served as the investigation's administrator and not actually been an attorney of record in either of the Whitewater trials so far. Another prosecutor is likely to be appointed to succeed him, since the Whitewater probe probably will not be complete by the time he leaves.
At the White House, there was no official comment on Starr's new job. But officials there suggested the development bodes well for the president and first lady, because Starr probably would not take the historic step of indicting the president or first lady and then walk away from the trial.
"There are smiles among the president's supporters," reported CNN's Wolf Blitzer.
The Whitewater probe appears to have entered a crucial phase. Sources say Starr's staff has prepared a memorandum that summarizes the evidence and lays out the pros and cons of issuing indictments to top administration members, including the Clintons.
Starr also will become the founding dean of the School of Public Policy. David Davenport, president of the Malibu, Calif. university, said in a statement that Starr "brings a breadth of experience and knowledge that is virtually unmatched."
Davenport told The Associated Press: "My assumption from talking with Ken in the interview process is that the investigation will go forward. I think he feels confident that there is a good team of people in place who are working on it and he has several more months to be part of the investigation before he reports for duty out here."
Starr, 50, was President George Bush's solicitor general. He has taught at Pepperdine's law school and received an honorary degree from the school last year.
CNN's Wolf Blitzer and Bob Franken contributed to this report.
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