“Dear President Trump,” wrote the impeachment head of the House of Representatives, Rep. Jamie Raskin, “as you know, the United States House of Representatives has approved an impeachment article against you for inciting insurrection.”
Is Trump aware of this? Social media has been blissfully quiet lately, but he has managed to hire knowledgeable lawyers to represent him at next week’s hearing. Then fire them and hire a whole slew of new lawyers who filed that gonzo response to the House mandate. So let’s say he got the memo.
“Two days ago you tabled a response in which you rejected many of the factual allegations made in the impeachment proceedings. You have therefore tried to question critical facts despite the clear and overwhelming evidence of your constitutional offense, ”Rep. Raskin continued. “In view of your dispute with these allegations of fact, I would like to invite you to take an oath testimony to your conduct on January 6, 2021 before or during the impeachment proceedings in the Senate. We suggest that you (of course) submit your testimony including cross-examination) on Monday, February 8th, 2021 and no later than Thursday, February 11th, 2021. “
Despite the former president’s history of being under oath, Trump Spox Jason Miller insists he can easily take Congress through. “The case is so simple that I think President Trump could come to his own defense in about fifteen minutes and turn this off,” he told Newsmax before admitting. “But no, I don’t expect the 45th President to be.” in Washington next week. “
As Raskin pointed out, seated presidents who had obligations to go beyond the full 18 holes managed to find time to testify before Congress. And while the letter did not include a threat to force Trump to appear, it stated, “If you decline this invitation, we reserve all rights, including the right to judge in court that your refusal to testify constitutes a strong negative conclusion Regarding your person bases actions (and inaction) on January 6, 2021. ”
Because impeachment is a political process and there are no Miranda rights in Congress. The Senators are not Article III jurors who are required to consider the case without prejudice or prejudice. They are representatives of the American people under Article I, and they have the right to draw any conclusion they like, as well as go on television and swear their undying loyalty to the former president.
But the best defense is a good insult, so Trump’s attorneys Bruce Castor Jr. and David Schoen came out swinging.
“We’re getting your latest publicity stunt,” they snorted indignantly. “As I am sure you know, there is no negative conclusion in this unconstitutional process.”
How wise of the Framers to have set the rules of a process that doesn’t even exist!
“Your letter only confirms what is known to everyone: you cannot prove your allegations against the 45th President of the United States, who is now a private individual,” they continued, concluding that “the use of our Constitution, to initiate an alleged impeachment is far too serious to try and play these games. “
Make sure you comply with the Trumpland rule that your client is referred to as “the 45th President” because “former” is such an ugly word. Why is the signature line justified in the middle? At least this time they managed to spell the United States correctly.
If the law and the facts are against you, hit the table.
Elizabeth Dye lives in Baltimore, where she writes on law and politics.