Starr's Message to Congress: End My Job

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WASHINGTON: Ken Starr has seen the enemy, and it is him -- sort of. The independent prosecutor is set to go before the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday to testify on whether to renew the independent counsel statute that turned him loose him on the President, and after five years and $46 million, guess what? He's against it. In prepared remarks, Starr calls the law "constitutionally dubious" and says it leads to overly politicized inquiries that, though "intended to enhance confidence in law enforcement... had the effect of weakening it."

He's not likely to get any argument on Capitol Hill -- support for the law in its current form has bottomed out after impeachment, and it will doubtless be left to pass away quietly when its five-year term runs out in June. But Starr still says it's all the law's fault, not his, that he became known at kitchen tables everywhere as the Peeping Tom prosecutor. "A duly authorized federal law enforcement investigation came to be characterized as yet another political game," he writes. "Outside prosecutors investigating presidents are likely to be scrutinized, impeded and sometimes fired." Janet Reno probably won't bother to disagree -- why split hairs? -- but she's still working on that last one.