Trump committed impeachable crimes, law scholars tell Congress


Pamela Karlan, professor of public interest law and co-director of the Supreme Court Litigation Clinic at Stanford Law School, testifies during a House Judiciary Committee hearing.

Democrats have made a forceful case that Trump should be removed from office for abusing his powers by pressuring Ukraine for dirt on an election rival, arguing that the authors of the American Constitution had a remedy - impeachment - for such wrongdoing. Later when the two leaders were face to face, Macron refused to back down, saying he stood by his comments.

President Donald Trump called Adam Schiff a "maniac" and a "deranged human being" at a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting Tuesday as Democrats prepared to publish an impeachment report.

Meanwhile, sources confirmed to McClatchy that lawmakers are also having conversations about producing a "compromise" document laying out Trump's many alleged offenses presented underneath a cover sheet of a more narrow set of impeachment articles on which the House could vote - reflecting the investigative work of multiple congressional committees over the course of the past year since Democrats reclaimed control of the chamber. That begins today in the House Judiciary Committee.

It long has been obvious that President Trump abused the power of his office to induce Ukraine - a country desperately in need of USA aid - to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and to lend credence to a conspiracy theory that could be used to challenge the consensus that Russian Federation meddled in the 2016 election to help Trump's candidacy.

Norman Eisen, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, is expected to question four scholars about the legal framework for impeachment and examine whether Trump's actions count as the "high crimes and misdemeanors" spelled out in the constitution as grounds for impeachment. "But everything I read about those occasions tells me that when President Trump invited, indeed demanded foreign involvement in our upcoming election, he struck at the very heart of what makes this a republic to which we pledge allegiance".

As the next stage of the impeachment process is underway, GOP lawmakers on Capitol Hill are speaking out against Democrats for their ongoing efforts.

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The hearing comes after the House Intelligence Committee held hearings in late November in the impeachment probe into Trump.

President Trump either did everything wrong or not much at all, depending on who you ask.

"Do they in fact love our country?"

Collins says "this is not impeachment, this is a simple railroad job". "And if there's no action, if Congress concludes they're going to give a pass to the president here, as Professor Karlan suggested earlier, every other president will say, "Okay, then I can do the same thing" and the boundaries will just evaporate", Gerhardt said, referring to another Democratic witness, Pamela Karlan.

The impeachment inquiry centers on a July 25 phone call Trump had with the president of Ukraine.

Even so, the 300-page report approved by the Democrats on the Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs committees on Tuesday weaves what we have learned over the last few months into a compelling narrative with an inescapable conclusion: Trump has compromised and subverted USA national security interests for his own domestic political purposes and must be held accountable. If a majority of the committee's members agree to do so, they'll approve articles in the coming weeks and send them to the House floor for a vote.