Ken Starr, the former federal judge who was the lead investigator in the impeachment trial of former President Bill Clinton, has died and we now know his cause of death.
His family said that he died from complications from surgery at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston.
“A Reagan judicial appointee and Solicitor General under George H.W. Bush, Ken Starr also served as Independent Counsel, President and Chancellor of Baylor University, and Dean of the Pepperdine School of Law. Starr had a distinguished career in academia, the law, and public service. After leaving Baylor, Starr was Of Counsel to The Lanier Law Firm, where he continued to practice appellate law. He also taught courses in constitutional law, negotiation, and religious liberty plus authored several books, and served as a commentator for Fox News. Starr died on September 13, 2022, at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston of complications from surgery,” the family said.
“We are deeply saddened by 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,” his son Randall said.
Starr was also the president of Baylor University from 2010 – 2016.
“Judge Starr was a dedicated public servant and ardent supporter of religious freedom that allows faith-based institutions such as Baylor to flourish,” the university’s President Linda Livingstone said, CNN reported.
A conservative Republican, 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. The Clintons ultimately were not prosecuted in that case, but 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.
The Lewinsky affair ultimately resulted in Clinton being 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.
Starr had been accused by some Democrats of prosecuting former President Clinton for political reasons, but he defended himself from those accusations.
Responses poured in from many on Twitter, including Monica Lewinsky who was a central figure in the Clinton impeachment.
“as i’m sure many can understand, my thoughts about ken starr bring up complicated feelings… but of more importance, is that i imagine it’s a painful loss for those who love him,” she said.
“We lost Ken Starr today, whose brilliant career left an indelible legacy as an advocate, a judge, an independent counsel, and an academic. He was a deeply principled and gracious person…,” Jonathan Turley said.
“I argued the secret service privilege case with Ken during the Clinton scandal and continued to correspond with him through the years. He was someone who loved the law and never stooped to the level of his critics as he carried out his professional duties.
“Ken truly believed that ‘Truth is a bedrock concept in morality and law.’ That remained the North Star of his career and there are few careers that can match his impact on our legal system,” he said.
“Our country lost a legend today in Ken Starr. I was honored to know the great man and I am saddened to hear of his passing. Praying for all those close to Ken during this time of grieving. RIP,” Brigitte Gabriel said.
“America just lost a tremendous patriot. And I lost a wonderful friend. I just learned that Ken Starr passed away today. News reports indicate it was due to complications from surgery. What a truly great loss to the nation,” Mark Levin said.
Reporting from Conservative Brief.
Ken Starr was a friend of American Faith founder, Phil Hotsenpiller.