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Former Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr, whose investigation led to the impeachment of former President Bill Clinton, appeared on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday to talk with host Jake Tapper about the possibility and consequences if democrats get their wish and impeach President Donald Trump. Starr thinks it’s a bad idea.

First, the talk centered on the recent news that Paul Manfort is now cooperating with prosecutors, and Tapper asks if Starr thinks that the Trump team is getting ready to put him on blast.

“Do you think that they’re paving the way, Rudy Giuliani, for attacks on Paul Manafort’s credibility?”

“Well I think that the Trump White House and the lawyers are taking a page from the Clinton playbook, you know, attack the prosecutor,” said Starr, who was the subject of extensive vilification during his investigation of Clinton. “This is more delicate because now you have someone very close to the president, at least for a while, the campaign manager. So I think it’s got to be very careful.”

“We’re much closer to getting the truth,” he added. Starr also said it would be “unwise” for Trump to pardon Paul Manafort.

Tapper pointed out that people now frequently refer back to Starr’s investigation. “A lot of times the president’s defenders will cite you when talking about out of control prosecutors, fishing expeditions, perjury traps, etc,” he said. “How do you respond to that?”

Starr explains that there was a “campaign of demonization” by the Clinton White House and its surrogates. “It was show no quarter. Take them out,” he said, but added with Tapper’s prompting that Trump’s forward style, leading the demonization, differs from Clinton’s, which was carried out more by others. Starr said that Clinton’s style was “charismatic, attractive and so forth,” which differed from Trump, who Starr says “comes directly at you as a New York street fighter.”

So Tapper asked the direct question regarding Trump.

“Do you think that President Trump will face the same fate as President Clinton, which is impeachment?”

“I hope not,” said Starr. “One of the lessons in the book is impeachment is hell. The country should not be taken through that.”

“The founding generation wisely knew it was such a serious accusation to require two thirds majority,” he added, and pointed out that it doesn’t end how you want. “Unless there is a growing national consensus that impeachment is proper, it’s doomed to fail and it’s just the wrong way to go.”

When Tapper asked if he was happy with the outcome in the case of Clinton, that he was not actually removed from office, Starr said that “the system worked,” even though had he been a senator, he said, he would have “voted to remove him.”

Watch the clip above, courtesy of CNN

[Featured image via screengrab]

Follow Caleb Howe (@CalebHowe) on Twitter

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