‘Frankly it’s the kind of thing that our State Department would criticize if we see it in foreign countries…’
(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) White House Counsel Pat Cipollone offered a fiery rebuttal on Tuesday to statements made by House impeachment manager Adam Schiff, D-Calif., in which he charged that House Democrats sought to compel the Senate to do its dirty work.
As arguments from both sides began in the US Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, Cipollone said the “wholesale trampling of constitutional rights” in Democrats’ impeachment proceedings “were not only ridiculous, they’re dangerous to this country.”
After Schiff claimed that the Senate proceedings should look ‘like any other trial,’ Cipollone and Jay Sekulow, the lead defense attorneys for President Donald Trump, charged that Schiff had done nothing of the sort in his own efforts in hearings as Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.
In fact, he said House Democrats had included an ulterior motive in the small print of their impeachment resolution: to keep Trump off the ballot in the November election.
“A partisan impeachment is like stealing an election, and that’s exactly what we have,’ said Cipollone.
“It’s a partisan impeachment that they’ve delivered to your doorstep in an election year,” he continued, addressing the senators. “Some of you should be in Iowa right now, but instead we’re here, and they’re not ready to go yet.”
Democrats argued in a resolution presented by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, that they should be allowed to introduce new witnesses and documents into the trial.
“They said in their briefs, ‘We have overwhelming evidence,’ and they’re not ready to go yet,” said Cipollone.
Cipollone charged that the Democrats had not even furnished Trump’s defense team with all the materials they hoped to submit.
“There’s still evidence in the skiff that we haven’t been allowed to see,” he said. “I wonder why.”
Cipollone also criticized the hypocritical way Democrats had built their case and subverted due process as un-American.
“Frankly it’s the kind of thing that our State Department would criticize if we see it in foreign countries,” he said.
But rather than to publicly make his own case during the House investigation, Schiff and his Democratic colleagues rushed the impeachment through the House to avoid facing a challenging court ruling that might have upheld President Donald Trump’s right to executive privilege.
“They’re asking you to become complicit in that evasion of the courts,” he said. “It’s ridiculous, and we should call it out for what it is.”
Cipollone said the House proceedings had violated constitutional norms in unprecedented ways, leading to what would have been the Founding Fathers’s worst nightmare.
“The reason it’s never been done is because no one ever thought that it would be a good idea for our country… to try to remove a president from a ballot—to deny the American people the right to vote based on a fraudulent investigation, conducted in secret,” he said.
“It’s long past time that we started so that we can end this ridiculous charade and go have an election,” he added.