Kenneth Starr, whose investigation of former President Bill Clinton led to the second-ever impeachment trial in American history, has died, his family said Tuesday. He was 76.
Starr was best known for being the independent counsel leading the investigation that ultimately led to the impeachment, in which Clinton was acquitted. He was also a Reagan judicial appointee and Solicitor General under President George H.W. Bush. Starr was also part of former President Trump’s first impeachment defense team in 2020.
Starr served as president of Texas’ Baylor University from 2010 until 2016.
“Judge Starr was a dedicated public servant and ardent supporter of religious freedom that allows faith-based institutions such as Baylor to flourish,” Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone said in a statement. “Ken and I served together as Deans at Pepperdine University in the 2000s, and I appreciated him as a Constitutional law scholar and a fellow academician who believed in the transformative power of higher education.
Randall P. Starr, Ken Starr’s son, said they are “deeply saddened” by the loss.
“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,” Starr said in a statement. “He is now with his Lord and Savior.”
Senate Majority Mitch McConnell also marked Starr’s passing.
“I am very sorry to learn of the passing of my friend Judge Ken Starr,” McConnell said. “He was a brilliant litigator, an impressive leader, and a devoted patriot. Through his distinguished service on the D.C. Circuit, as Solicitor General, as independent counsel, and beyond, Ken poured his remarkable energy and talent into promoting justice, defending the Constitution, and upholding the rule of law.”
Starr will be buried at the Texas State Cemetery in Austin.