Morrison v. Olsen, Scalia, Kenneth Starr, States v. Singleton, Singleton, Monica Lewinsky, Napoleon Douglas, prosecutor discretion


This article discusses the lessons contained in States v. Singleton and the system that has been adopted for investigating and prosecuting high executive officers. After describing Singleton and the tumult it triggered in Part I of this Article, Part II returns to the Starr Referral and poses a question that may at first seem idle: what distinguishes Starr's promises to Lewinsky in exchange for her testimony from the efforts he charges the President made to help find her a job? Part III of the Article broadens the focus. It argues there has been a general failure to think rigorously about the questions prosecutors face every day regarding the proper exercise of their discretion. How should prosecutors decide what charges to file? When, for example, does perjury, or obstruction of justice, warrant criminal prosecution? What role should the likely sanctions play in a prosecutor's choice of charges?

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