Impeachment hearing witness invokes Barron Trump's name for laughs

Schiff impeachment report offers nothing but predetermined conclusion

Top House Democrat wants Mueller findings in impeachment articles against Trump | McClatchy Washington Bureau

"The evidence reveals a president who used the powers of his office to demand that a foreign government participate in undermining a competing candidate for the presidency", Pamela Karlan, a law professor at Stanford University Law School, told Wednesday's House Judiciary panel hearing.

If left unchecked, the president will likely continue his pattern of soliciting foreign interference on his behalf in the next election.

While the three Democratic-invited law professors backed impeachment, the law professor called by Republicans to testify, George Washington's Jonathan Turley, argued that Democrats were making a mistake that would have long-lasting consequences.

The House is moving rapidly towards a vote to impeach Trump later this month.

As the report notes, among the articles of impeachment approved by the House Judiciary Committee in its investigation of President Nixon was one concluding that he had obstructed justice by withholding evidence.

This comes as President Trump has continued to slam Democrat impeachment inquiry as an "witch hunt", while maintaining the July phone call with his Ukrainian counterpart was "perfect".

Trump, attending a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting in London, called the impeachment effort by Democrats "unpatriotic" and said he wouldn't be watching Wednesday's hearing. The report is expected to serve as the basis for articles of impeachment. "And contrary to what President Trump has said, Article II does not give him the power to do anything he wants", Karlan said.

Faced with the revelation of his actions, President Trump publicly and repeatedly persisted in urging foreign governments, including Ukraine and China, to investigate his political opponent. Jerry Nadler of NY, and the top Republican on the panel, Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia, are expected to deliver opening statements at the start of the hearing.

"I think they should have just said, this is a very serious, sober experience for the country to go through, we're not going to talk about it until we have the facts", Card said.

Democrats warned that President Donald Trump must be stopped from enlisting foreign interference in US elections and Republicans said there are no grounds for removing him from office.

"Rather, my job is to describe how the constitutional meaning of impeachable offenses applies to the facts described by the testimony and evidence before the House".

In a letter to Nadler that was sent before the witnesses had been publicly announced, White House counsel to the President Pat Cipollone wrote, "We can not fairly be expected to participate in a hearing while the witnesses are yet to be named and while it remains unclear whether the Judiciary Committee will afford the President a fair process through additional hearings".

But another professor, Jonathan Turley of George Washington University, is warning against trying to impeach Trump.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi's top lieutenants have, until this point, been circumspect about their intentions, even as the party's impeachment inquiry heads into its final stages.

Senate Republicans are to meet privately with the White House counsel.

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