President Trump’s lawyers are poised to wrap up their defense in the Senate impeachment trial Tuesday as pressure increased on Republicans to allow witnesses to testify after the revelations about Ukraine leaked from former national security adviser John Bolton’s book.
During its arguments Monday, the White House legal team — featuring presentations from Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz and Ken Starr, the independent counsel who headed the investigation that led to President Bill Clinton’s impeachment — picked apart the House managers’ case against Trump.
Starr warned senators of the dire consequences of conviction for the nation and the government.
“Those of us who lived through the Clinton impeachment, including members of this body, full well understand that a presidential impeachment is tantamount to domestic war, but thankfully protected by our beloved First Amendment, a war of words and a war of ideas. But it’s filled with acrimony, and it divides the country like nothing else,” Starr said. “Those of us who lived through the Clinton impeachment understand that in a deep and personal way.”
Dershowitz directly addressed the allegations in Bolton’s unpublished book in the context of the impeachment trial.
“Nothing in the Bolton revelations, even if true, would rise to the level of an abuse of power or an impeachable offense. That is clear from the history. That is clear from the language of the Constitution,” he said. “You cannot turn conduct that is not impeachable into impeachable conduct simply by using words like ‘quid pro quo’ and ‘personal benefit.’ ”
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