Trump says impeachment lawyers were 'really good'

President TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Memo: Biden seeks revival in South Carolina Congress eyes billion to billion to combat coronavirus Sanders makes the case against Biden ahead of SC primary MORE said Wednesday that he watched some of the Senate impeachment trial the day before and thought his legal team was “really good.”

“I did get to see some of it. It’s a hoax. It’s a total hoax,” Trump said in an interview with CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “I think the team was really good. The facts are all on our side.”

Trump attacked the House’s impeachment case in familiar terms and defended his July 25 call with Ukraine’s president, which is at the center of the allegations, as “perfect.”


The president also said that he didn’t know if witnesses would be called in the impeachment inquiry but claimed that if “everybody tells the truth, it’s perfect.”

“All you have to do is read the transcript,” Trump said, referring to the transcript of his call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. “I had a first call which was perfect, and I had a second call which was perfect.”

The president’s impeachment trial got underway in earnest on Tuesday in the GOP-controlled Senate, with House impeachment managers and the president’s legal team debating rules for the trial and a series of amendments offered by Democrats seeking to issue subpoenas for documents and testimony from witnesses like former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonOvernight Health Care — Presented by American Health Care Association — Trump taps Pence to lead coronavirus response | Trump accuses Pelosi of trying to create panic | CDC confirms case of 'unknown' origin | Schumer wants .5 billion in emergency funds Bolton's lost leverage Azar downplays chance Trump will appoint coronavirus czar MORE. The amendments were defeated in several votes that extended late into the night on Tuesday.

Senate Republicans forced through a resolution that established the trial rules in the early morning hours on Wednesday, paving the way for House Democrats to begin giving their opening arguments later in the day when the trial kicks off at 1 p.m.

Trump told CNBC on Wednesday that he was able to watch some of the trial despite a “busy day” in Davos, where he had a handful of bilateral meetings with foreign leaders and delivered a keynote address at the annual gathering early Tuesday. Most of the events in Davos took place before the trial as a result of the time change.


Trump asked Zelensky on the July 25 call to investigate a debunked theory about 2016 election interference as well as Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenThe Memo: Biden seeks revival in South Carolina Sanders makes the case against Biden ahead of SC primary Sanders holds 13-point lead in Fox News poll MORE and his son Hunter’s business dealings in Ukraine, according to a rough transcript released by the White House.

The conversation triggered an intelligence community whistleblower complaint alleging that Trump solicited foreign interference in an election and has formed the basis of House Democrats’ case that Trump abused his power in his dealings with Ukraine.

Democrats have also collected what they describe as “overwhelming evidence” that Trump sought to use a White House meeting and security assistance to Ukraine to press for investigations that would benefit his reelection bid.

Trump has maintained he did nothing wrong on the call, and his attorneys argued in an extensive brief filed with the Senate on Monday that Trump had legitimate reasons to raise 2016 election interference and the Bidens on the call.

Trump’s legal team, led by White House counsel Pat Cipollone and the president’s personal attorney Jay SekulowJay Alan SekulowWhat the impeachment vote looked like from inside the chamber Senate votes to acquit Trump on articles of impeachment Roberts emerges unscathed from bitter impeachment trial MORE, offered a fiery defense of Trump during Tuesday’s proceedings against what they termed a partisan impeachment effort. Cipollone accused House Democrats of trying to “steal two elections” — a reference to the 2016 presidential election and the upcoming 2020 vote.