GOP witness to say Trump impeachment would set a ‘dangerous precedent’
George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, the only witness at Wednesday’s impeachment hearing to be invited by Republicans, argues in his opening statement that Democrats have not produced the evidence to justify impeaching President Trump.
Turley, a professor of public interest law, says in his lengthy statement to the House Judiciary Committee that an impeachment would be based on the “thinnest evidentiary record.”
“If the House proceeds solely on the Ukrainian allegations, this impeachment would stand out among modern impeachments as the shortest proceeding, with the thinnest evidentiary record, and the narrowest grounds ever used to impeach a president,” Turley says in his prepared testimony.
Turley, who is also a contributor to The Hill, added that if this impeachment went through, it would set a “dangerous precedent” for future presidents in an increasingly partisan political environment.
Turley is one of four witnesses to testify on Wednesday. The other three constitutional experts, all invited to testify by Democrats, are arguing that there is evidence to impeach Trump.
Turley in his statement asked the committee to consider whether this impeachment would be considered fair if the president was Democratic.
“We are all mad and where has it taken us?” he asked. “Will a slipshod impeachment make us less mad or will it only give an invitation for the madness to follow in every future administration?”
He said the way House Democrats have approached impeaching Trump is “wrong” because it was put together too quickly with “a relatively small number of witnesses with largely second-hand knowledge of the position.”
“In this age of rage, many are appealing for us to simply put the law aside and ‘just do it’ like this is some impulse-buy Nike sneaker,” his statement reads.
“However, the legal definitions and standards that I have addressed in my testimony are the very thing dividing rage from reason,” he added.
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