Tags: Trump Administration | Trump Impeachment | trump | impeachment | constitution

Trump Rejects Impeachment Charges as an Affront to Constitution

Trump Rejects Impeachment Charges as an Affront to Constitution
(Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 20 January 2020 01:57 PM

President Donald Trump's legal team on Monday rejected the Democrat-led House of Representatives' impeachment charges.

His legal team, in a 110-page filing, insisted Trump he did “absolutely nothing wrong," and urged the Senate to swiftly reject the "flimsy" case, branding it a "dangerous perversion of the Constitution."

The filing  shifted the tone toward a more legal response. It still hinged on Trump’s assertion he did nothing wrong and did not commit a crime — even though impeachment does not depend on a material violation of law but rather on the more vague definition of “other high crimes and misdemeanors” as established in the Constitution.

“It is a constitutional travesty," the lawyers wrote.

Trump, only the fourth of 45 American presidents to face the possibility of impeachment, is charged with abusing the powers of his office by asking Ukraine to investigate a Democrat political rival, Joe Biden, and obstructing a congressional inquiry into his conduct.

The executive summary asserted that the "House Democrats theory of 'abuse of power' is not an impeachable offense." It rejected the obstruction of Congress charge as frivolous and dangerous, saying the president exercised his legal rights by resisting congressional demands for information.

It accused the House Democrats of conducting a rigged process and said they succeeded in proving that Trump had done nothing wrong.

While the Republican-controlled Senate is highly unlikely to remove Trump from office, it is important for the Republican president to diminish the Democrat accusations as a partisan witch-hunt. He needs to limit the political damage to his re-election bid as he seeks a second term in November.

Trump's legal team says he was well within his constitutional authority to press Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy last year to investigate Biden and his son Hunter as part of what Trump says was an anti-corruption drive. The Bidens deny any wrongdoing and Trump's allegations have been widely debunked.

Democrats say Trump abused his power by withholding U.S. military assistance to Ukraine as part of a pressure campaign and obstructed Congress by refusing to hand over documents and barring administration officials from testifying, even when subpoenaed by House investigators.

Trump's team says he is protected by the U.S. Constitution's separation of powers provisions.

In a 111-page document filed before the Senate trial begins in earnest on Tuesday, Democrat lawmakers laid out their arguments against Trump, saying the president must be removed from office to protect national security and preserve the country's system of government.

Seeking to show he is still conducting presidential business despite the trial, Trump is scheduled to depart late on Monday for Davos, Switzerland, to join global leaders at the World Economic Forum. Some advisers had argued against him making the trip.

Trump also directlly slammeed the process in a pair of tweets Monday.

"They didn’t want John Bolton and others in the House. They were in too much of a rush. Now they want them all in the Senate. Not supposed to be that way!" Trump wrote.

"Cryin’ Chuck Schumer is now asking for “fairness”, when he and the Democrat House members worked together to make sure I got ZERO fairness in the House," he added in a second tweet. "So, what else is new?

This report contains material from Reuters and The Associated Press.

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President Donald Trump's legal team on Monday rejected the Democrat-led House of Representatives' impeachment charges.His legal team, in a 110-page filing, insisted Trump he did "absolutely nothing wrong," and urged the Senate to swiftly reject the "flimsy" case.
trump, impeachment, constitution
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2020-57-20
Monday, 20 January 2020 01:57 PM
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