Melania Trump slams Democrats' impeachment witness who name-dropped Barron

Andy Biggs

Andy Biggs

Stanford law professor Pamela Karlan, one of the constitutional scholars called by Democrats to testify in the House Judiciary Committee's first impeachment hearing Wednesday, admonished Rep. Doug Collins, R-Calif., the panel's ranking member, for suggesting that she was a partisan who did not care about the "facts" of the case against President Donald Trump.

A panel of four law professors will be speaking to provide historic and legal context of impeachment and whether it may be merited in this case.

The three other constitutional scholars summoned by Democrats called for Trump to be impeached.

The panel would draft any articles of impeachment-formal charges-against Trump.

The House Intelligence Committee has so far led that investigation, but now the Judiciary Committee, which has jurisdiction over drafting articles of impeachment, will have its time in the spotlight.

Karlan argued that Trump committed several impeachable offenses and said the president abused his oath of office for personal reasons when asking Ukraine for a "favor" to investigate Democrats.

Trump in London abruptly cancelled a planned news conference at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation leadership conference and returned early to Washington where he now confronts the rising challenge to his leadership that impeachment represents.

He said his motion would not have unveiled the identity of the whistleblower but would have provided for the Judiciary Committee to conduct a deposition in executive session. "Contrary to what President Trump has said, Article Two does not give him the power to do anything he wants", Karlan said, eliciting laughs.

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The political risks are high for all parties as the House presses only the fourth presidential impeachment inquiry in US history.

"I was at the University of Pennsylvania Law School yesterday, where I teach a class, and my law class is still in therapy", Gerhardt said, in a video taken shortly after the 2016 election. "The people of this country are being cheated of a Congress who works for them".

"What comparisons, Professor, can we make between kings that the framers were afraid of and the president's conduct today?"

"We are here, no fact witnesses, simply a rubber stamp", Collins said.

But another professor, Jonathan Turley of George Washington University, is warning against trying to impeach Trump. But "the president was the author of his own impeachment inquiry by repeatedly seeking foreign help in his election campaigns". Which is the Constitution says there can be no titles of nobility.

Wednesday's hearing marked a turning point in the impeachment inquiry of Trump.

Trump told reporters he really doesn't know why Giuliani was calling the White House's Office of Management and Budget, which was withholding $400 million in military aid to the ally confronting an aggressive Russian Federation at its border.

A number of members on the Judiciary Committee will also have a unique historical perspective on the unfolding inquiry, given that they served in Congress during the 1998 impeachment inquiry into President Bill Clinton.

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