Jan 20, 2020

White House: Impeachment articles are "an affront to the Constitution"

Donald Trump on Jan. 19. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

The White House on Monday has asked the Senate to “swiftly reject” the articles of impeachment against President Trump, calling them "an affront to the Constitution and to our democratic institutions."

Why it matters: The 110-page legal brief is the first glimpse into the president's defense strategy. In it his lawyers argue that neither of the two articles is valid because they do not constitute a violation of the law and only punish the president for expressing his constitutional powers.

Thought bubble, via Axios' White House reporter Jonathan Swan: "This is why the Trump team brought Alan Dershowitz into the mix. They want to establish the idea that even if everything the Democrats allege in their articles were true — something they obviously won’t concede — they still wouldn’t rise to the level of impeachable offenses."

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House impeachment managers call on Senate to "conduct a fair trial"

The House impeachment managers on Jan. 16. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

The House's impeachment managers on Monday responded to the White House's legal argument against impeachment, saying "[t]he House denies each and every allegation."

Why it matters: The managers called on the Senate to "conduct a fair trial—fair for President Trump, and fair for the American people" by requiring the president to turn over relevant documents and hearing from witnesses, "as it has done in every impeachment trial in American history." The Senate trial begins

Go deeper: White House: Impeachment articles are "an affront to the Constitution"

Keep ReadingArrowJan 20, 2020

Dershowitz says he's more correct on impeachment now than in 1998

Alan Dershowitz speaks at an event in New York City last April. Photo: Erik McGregor/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

Alan Dershowitz, a member of President Trump's impeachment trial legal defense team, told CNN Monday he has a "more sophisticated basis" for his argument on what constitutes an impeachable offense than during the Clinton impeachment.

Why it matters: In 1998, he told CNN crime wasn't a factor in impeachment "if you have somebody who completely corrupts the office of president and who abuses trust and who poses great danger to our liberty."

Go deeperArrowJan 21, 2020

Impeachment witness for the GOP blasts part of Trump's legal defense

Trump in Davos, Switzerland, Jan. 21. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Jonathan Turley, a law professor who served as the sole Republican witness at the last House Judiciary hearing on impeachment, lamented part of President Trump's legal defense in a Washington Post op-ed on Tuesday.

What he's saying: "The White House is arguing that you cannot impeach a president without a crime. It is a view that is at odds with history and the purpose of the Constitution."

Go deeperArrowJan 22, 2020