Mr. DOLE. Mr. President, there is an old saying that good things come to those who wait.
Well, along with countless other Americans, I have waited for many years for Lawrence Walsh to shut down his $32 million Iran-Contra extravaganza.
And, yesterday, we finally got some good news. Mr. Walsh has now declared that his office has completed his active investigation. And once he completes the three scheduled trials, the entire office will shut down.
Mr. President, for the sake of the American taxpayer, this news could not have come soon enough.
For 6 years, Mr. Walsh and his army of lawyers have threatened and badgered anyone they could get their hands on. And can any objective observer look at the results of the investigation and say `well done?'
The three major convictions obtained by Mr. Walsh were overturned--just as many legal scholars predicted, before this witch hunt began.
Mr. Walsh was able to force a few guilty pleas from defendants, but only because they could not possibly afford the attorneys fees which would have resulted from going to trial to defend themselves.
It has long been obvious to most objective observers that Mr. Walsh had done all he could, and that his operation should
be shut down. Still, he pressed on, going down every blind alley, and pursuing more conspiracy theories than Oliver Stone.
Even Arthur Liman, the chief Senate counsel for the Senate Iran-Contra Committee said the other day that `the investigation just went on much too long.'
I would not have objected to the length and uselessness of the investigation if Mr. Walsh was paying for it. But he is not. The American people are. We are.
We are still paying so Mr. Walsh can rent some of the most elaborate office space in Washington, DC.
We are still paying to fly Mr. Walsh and his chief deputy, Craig Gillen, back and forth from Oklahoma City and Atlanta each week.
We are still paying for their hotel rooms in Washington.
We are still paying for their meals here in Washington.
And do not let Mr. Walsh's statement about closing down fool you. We are going to keep on paying for them for a long time. Mr. Walsh will not close down shop until three ongoing matters are disposed of at trial.
And Mr. Walsh has taken us down this road before. In September of 1990, he said that spring of 1991 would be a good time to end his investigation.
Spring of 1991 and 1992 have come and gone, and so have millions and millions of your tax dollars; and I would not be surprised if Mr. Walsh will still be spinning his wheels and spending our money in the spring of 1993.
I hope that before Mr. Walsh does close his doors, this advocate of full disclosure will fully disclose the complete expense records of his office. The American people deserve to know how their money was spent--and, in some cases, misspent.