USA: Trump complains that he’s getting a raw deal in public impeachment hearings

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 6: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks about judicial confirmations during an event in the East Room of the White House on November 6, 2019 in Washington, DC. More than 150 of the president's federal judicial nominees have been confirmed by the Republican-controlled Senate. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

“I get NO LAWYER & NO DUE PROCESS,” the president wrote in a tweet, lashing out at next week’s events.

By CAITLIN OPRYSKO – 07.11.2019

President Donald Trump on Thursday lashed out at the upcoming public impeachment hearings in the House, claiming that his due process rights had been violated by Democratic rules governing the process.

“It was just explained to me that for next weeks Fake Hearing (trial) in the House, as they interview Never Trumpers and others, I get NO LAWYER & NO DUE PROCESS,” he wrote on Twitters of the House-approved rules that have been public for more than a week. “It is a Pelosi, Schiff, Scam against the Republican Party and me. This Witch Hunt should not be allowed to proceed!”

While Trump is correct that there will be no White House lawyer participating in next week’s hearings, the rules passed by the House on a roughly party line vote last Thursday allow for more participation if and when the process moves into the Judiciary Committee. A trial to acquit the president or convict and remove him from office will only take place in the Senate if the full House passes articles of impeachment.

According to the rules, Republicans can request to call witnesses and issue subpoenas at Intelligence Committee hearings, but the requests can be vetoed by Chairman Adam Schiff, a similar arrangement to previous impeachment proceedings.

The president and his legal team will also be able to mount a defense and cross-examine witnesses in the House Judiciary Committee, which will draft any articles of impeachment. That, too, will need to be approved by Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.).

Republicans have sought to address that issue by shuffling committee assignmentsto potentially move Rep. Jim Jordan, now the ranking member of the Oversight Committee and one of Trump’s most loyal attack dogs on the Hill, to the Intelligence Committee for the duration of the inquiry.

In the meantime, GOP lawmakers saythey’ve been asked to submit a list of witnesses they’d like to call by Saturday.

Trump’s tweet on Thursday also reprised his attacks against career officials who have testified against him thus far in the probe, who the president and his allies have dismissed as “never Trumpers.” Trump has also referred to some of his critics more broadly as “human scum.”

The first hearing, set to take place Nov. 13, is expected to feature William Taylor, the top diplomat in Ukraine, and George Kent, a deputy assistant secretary of State — two key figures in the Ukraine scandal endangering Trump’s presidency. Both men are currently still a part of the Trump administration. Two days later, Marie Yovanovitch, who was pushed out as the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine after a smear campaign backed by Trump, is slated to testify.


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