Dec 9, 2019

GOP's House Intel counsel grilled by Democrats over impeachment report

Steve Castor, the counsel representing Republicans from the House Intelligence Committee, faced a tough line of questioning during Monday's hearing over their report's representation of witness testimony in the ongoing impeachment inquiry.

What happened: Barry Berke, the counsel for Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee, peppered Castor with questions about why the GOP report only stated that Jennifer Williams, an aide to Vice President Pence, said that President Trump's July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was "unusual."

  • Williams also testified that the call was "inappropriate" and struck her as "political in nature," despite the GOP argument that Trump never meant to push for a foreign investigation of a domestic political opponent.
  • "Were you as fair to the American people in describing what Ms. Williams said as you were in describing everything else in your report?" Berke asked.

The big picture: The exchange also featured the parliamentary wrangling by House Judiciary Republicans that has occurred throughout Monday's hearing — with some minority members of the committee arguing that Berke was badgering Castor.

Go deeper: Live updates from today's evidentiary impeachment hearing

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House Judiciary Committee hears impeachment evidence

Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Pool/Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee heard the evidence behind the impeachment inquiry on Monday in a marathon nine-and-a-half hour hearing.

Why it matters: The committee is likely only days away from drafting formal articles of impeachment against President Trump — and this hearing was one of House Democrats' last chances to summarize their case against the president to the public.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Dec 9, 2019

Republican counsel says Democrats are impeaching Trump because they disagree with him

Steve Castor, acting as counsel for Republicans on both the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees, argued during Monday's impeachment hearing that House Democrats are only seeking to impeach President Trump because they disagree with his policies.

The big picture: In his opening statement as Judiciary's counsel, Castor framed the Ukraine investigation as a last-ditch Democratic attempt to act against the president, saying, "To impeach a president who 63 million people voted for over eight lines in a call transcript is baloney."

Read his statementArrowUpdated Dec 9, 2019

Democrats' Judiciary counsel lays out the constitutional case for impeachment

Barry Berke, the counsel for Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee, used his opening statement in Monday's impeachment hearing to lay out the case against President Trump.

The big picture: Berke leaned heavily on the constitutional basis for impeachment, arguing that the Founding Fathers specifically laid out their concerns "that someone would be elected president who would use all the power of that office to serve his own personal interest."

Go deeper: Live updates from today's evidentiary impeachment hearing