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BREAKING: Ken Starr, Independent Lawyer Who Exposed Bill Clinton’s Illicit Affair With Monica Lewinsky, Dies At 76

Kenneth Winston Starr
September 13, 2022

Starr became famous in the 1990s as the independent counsel who doggedly investigated Clinton while he was US President during a series of political scandals.

Kenneth Winston Starr, a former US solicitor general who investigated President Bill Clinton has died. 

Starr became famous in the 1990s as the independent counsel who doggedly investigated Clinton while he was US President during a series of political scandals.

Starr died of complications from surgery at 76, a statement from his family said.

"We are deeply saddened with the loss of our dear and loving Father and Grandfather, whom we admired for his prodigious work ethic, but who always put his family first. 

“The love, energy, endearing sense of humor, and fun-loving interest Dad exhibited to each of us was truly special, and we cherish the many wonderful memories we were able to experience with him," Starr's son, Randall, said in the statement on behalf of his children, as reported by CNN.

Starr, a conservative Republican, was a member of former President Donald Trump's defence team during Trump's first impeachment and also served as president of Baylor University from 2010 to 2016.

Baylor President Linda Livingstone said in a statement Tuesday that "Judge Starr was a dedicated public servant and ardent supporter of religious freedom that allows faith-based institutions such as Baylor to flourish."

Starr's investigations into Clinton began when he was appointed by a federal appeals panel in 1994 as an independent counsel in the probe of the then-President and Hillary Clinton's involvement in the Whitewater real estate scandal. Though the Clintons were not prosecuted in that case, Starr's investigation in the Clintons' dealings later expanded to include Paula Jones' allegations of sexual harassment, and that inquiry led to Starr leading the investigation into the President's affair with Monica Lewinsky.

Following the Lewinsky saga, Clinton was impeached on two charges of lying under oath to a federal grand jury and obstructing justice, though he was acquitted by the Senate in February 1999 and served out the remainder of his term.

The scandal dominated Washington and much of the news media for more than a year, and both Starr and Clinton were named Time's Men of the Year in 1998. Starr's investigation was seen as a reflection of an era of increasingly bitter partisanship coupled with a tabloid-like interest in the personal lives of politicians. In particular, Starr's report to Congress on the affair was criticised for containing numerous lurid details about the sexual relationship between Clinton and Lewinsky.

Starr rejected accusations that his pursuit of Clinton was politically motivated.

"I was assigned to do a job by the attorney general, and that was to find out whether crimes were committed in this (Paula Jones) sexual harassment lawsuit," Starr said at the time. "The whole idea of equal justice under law means that you've got to play by the rules. It has nothing to do with the underlying subject matter. You just tell the truth."