TURLEY TESTIFIES AT TRUMP IMPEACHMENT HEARING

This morning I will be testifying at the House Judiciary Committee in the opening hearing into the impeachment of President Donald J. Trump. My testimony is available below.

It has been roughly 20 years since I testified at the same hearing in the impeachment of President William J. Clinton and roughly 10 years since I was lead counsel at the last Senate impeachment trial (with my co-lead counsel Daniel Schwartz).

The hearing will be held at 10:00 am in 1100 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, DC 20515. It is open to the public.

I have the pleasure of appearing with three esteemed academics:

Noah Feldman, Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law and Director, Julis-Rabinowitz Program on Jewish and Israeli Law at Harvard Law School

Pamela S. Karlan, Kenneth and Harle Montgomery Professor of Public Interest Law and Co-Director, Supreme Court Litigation Clinic at Stanford Law School

Michael Gerhardt, Burton Craige Distinguished Professor of Jurisprudence at The University of North Carolina School of Law

Here is my testimony:

715 thoughts on “TURLEY TESTIFIES AT TRUMP IMPEACHMENT HEARING”

  1. Turley slammed the impeachment crowd today…using calm reasoning based on the law and history. And he’s a lefty to boot. That’s gotta hurt real bad.

      1. As is often the case in trials, the issues avoided are of much greater import than those being endlessly discussed. President Trump’s “Do me a favor, though” was not an attempt to acquire information about Biden which would be of use in the 2020 election; Trump would love to run against Biden and would hardly need assistance. What Trump sought was to expose the Christopher Steele/Fusion GPS/Hillary Clinton/Barack Obama all-out effort to prevent his election in 2016. Because the largest U.S. , German, French, Chinese el al. corporations are now global, they MUST have a world government to protect/serve them. Trump’s nationalist government, like Brexit in England and Le Pen in France, is an unacceptable obstacle to achieving that end. We are reliving the events which preceded the American Revolution and the Civil War. The immediate future is very dark indeed.

        1. Ted – the demented, finger sucking Joe Biden is the best candidate for Trump to run against. He doesn’t need any help there.

        2. Yes, we know Trump sought to expose a conspiracy theory that doesn’t really exist. If anything, Obama did him a favor by not telling the public as much about the Trump campaign’s connections with Russia as he could have. And Comey did him a huge favor by announcing the reopening of Hillary’s email investigation right before the election.

          And regardless of what you as an expert pundit think about the relative chances of various Democratic candidates against Trump, Biden was consistently polling the strongest against him back then, by a longshot.

          But unless you’ve got proof he was attempting to stop a globalist plot to install a one-world government, and he starts using that as a defense..you are essentially admitting he abused his power.

  2. Great job, Jonathan. The Leftist Media doesn’t know what to do with you. They can’t help but point out the obvious and praise you for your eloquence, sense of humor, easy going style and your understanding of the law. Then, they immediately try to discount your testimony by bringing in a multitude of Leftist experts who misquote and misinterpret what you’ve said. Great job, Jonathan. You’ve stirred up their nest while being open, honest and straightforward. And luvin it!

    How does any one know, beyond a reasonable doubt–if that’s the standard–exactly what Trump intended to do with the results of any investigation conducted by Ukraine? A president is prohibited from asking an ally to get to the bottom of what may have been serious crimes–regardless who committed them? Let the chips fall where they may. Doesn’t a president have the right to withhold military assistance based on his authority?

    What if a president calls on a foreign government to ensure a U.S. citizen is treated properly in a judicial proceeding, implying that the future will be bright for them if they do? And, it just so happens that he’ll be considered a hero if they follow his entreaty?

  3. Really? I used to stop what I was doing to listen to what you had to say, but now I’ve lost confidence. The thing itself speaks

    1. if you’re comparing then compare it to andrew johnson’s failed impeachment.

      but you obviously didn’t listen to turley, did you fish head?

      1. JT tried like hell to redefine what bribery is, and then brought up the 1600’s, so I guess bringing up the 1990’s is just to much for you to understand.

        1. Fishwings,
          Try looking at the Court decisions that Turley referenced.
          He made a point of stating that bribery is mentioned in the Constitution, but not well-defined.
          And spoke of the disagreements even at the time over the meaning of bribery.
          And that ultimately SCOTUS decisions have given a clearer meaning to the offense of “bribery”.
          Or at least set some boundaries of what it was, and what it was not.
          I’m wondering if you even bothered to watch his testimony.

            1. I think that trying to sell a vacated Senate seat for money would be a clear-cut example of bribery.
              Citing the Blagojevich case to ask about the definition of bribery at issue in the impeachment proceedings makes no sense.

    2. Today we have seen the most ignorant law professor in the country. I feel horrible for people who paid tuition to sit through your class.

      1. JT has worked the willfully ignorant that support Trump on his site for a while. When FOX gets rid of Judge Nap, and they will, JT has a job. He earned it.

        1. Maybe Fishwings should watch other networks instead of just watching Fox News.
          I’ve seen Turley on C-Span, CBS, PBS, as well as Fox and probably other networks.
          Fishwings might have caught him on these other networks if Fishwings would only turn off Fox.
          It’s interesting that some of the most ardent of the TDS crowd are so obsessed with Fox News, judging from comments here.

          1. Paul C., As Bubba said when questioned about the nature of his relationship with Gennifer Flowers, “Close; but no cigar.”

            Hizzonner. is not a never-trumper; however, he certainly has no fondness for Number 45, either.

            Rumor has it that Nappy once had an eye on a SCOTUS appointment. If that’s true, well, you observe that he’s currently working other gigs, so…

  4. Turley’s Testimony

    Professor Turley came across as a likable academic with a love for history. Yet his lengthy testimony rarely touched on the present. Rarely did Donald’s Trump’s name come up. In fact, one might have mistaken the professor’s testimony as just a broad review of history with no connection to any pending crisis. This approach allowed Donald Trump to take the form of a theoretic president; as opposed to the rash blow-hard he really is.

    1. well Simon constitutional law is mostly theory so yeah it matters.

      he did address facts just not the way you guys liked

      thanks for more anti Trump insults. you can always be trusted to identify yourselves, at least

  5. As of 2:00 p.m., Turley has been terrific, masterful. And his temperament is so different from that of the three angry Democrats.

  6. wow! what an embarrasement to the rest of those who believe in democracy knowing full well you are amongst us

  7. What Turley told Congress regarding Clinton Impeachment: “If you decide that certain acts do not rise to impeachable offenses, you will expand the space for executive conduct.”

  8. This dude was paid by the republicans to give favorable testimony for them when three other people there didn’t agree with him. I used to like this guy never again.

    1. Mr. Gorrell might have been happier if it was 4-0 giving testimony for the Democrats, rather than 3 against 1.

    2. Mr Gorrell. Jonathan has told us on this site many of the things he said today. He is taking that view because he believes it. The other three have all been involved in a great deal of anti Trump writings almost as soon as he won. Turley shares their politics but he is speaking truth as he beleives it not his politics. I think that is very admirable.

    3. Paul:
      “This dude was paid by the republicans to give favorable testimony for them when three other people there didn’t agree with him. I used to like this guy never again.”
      ****************
      How much did he get? Who paid him? How do you know? Just a few questions every accusing witness should answer, right?

  9. “Turley summarized: You’re just mad. What will happen if we impeach a president for soliciting foreign attacks on our elections? If that’s wrong, everything is wrong and nothing is right. Also, it’s unfair to impeach a president without obtaining information he withheld from you.”

    1. “Darren needs to do some deleting and banning.”

      Oh, please.

      Said like the perfect little authoritarian. Why don’t you point us to what you find so objectionable. What should be deleted? Who should be banned?

      TIA needs his or her own blog, perhaps — and certainly more of a life, given his frequent and overbearing presence in the comments section of JT’s blog.

          1. doesnt matter much but yes I am a lawyer and moreover i”ve made the claim and proven it and taken money from a loser in court who had done it. have you?

            or are you one of those punctilious sorts who wants to try and score points on libel versus slander? trolls i gather is what they call you. must not be a lawyer because in torts 101 the professor usually says “in the common usage all three are essentially the same thing even though libel means printed and slander means spoken” and of course dictionaries make essentially the same point.

            but none of the new interlocutors are listening to professor turley today are they, just the ones they like, or so it seems

      1. Joe Nobody,
        You can count the number of “pro/con” commentators here today.
        That undercuts your argument that this blog is rigged “in favor of Trump supporters”
        From the number of new names here appearing all at once, maybe the “never Trumpers” just found their voice and their courage, all at once.
        It’s very rare to see people banned or have their comments deleted ( sometimes a glitch will prevent posting a comment or make one disappear).

        1. No, Anonymous, it’s very rare to see Trumpers banned or deleted from these threads. But Liberals can get banned or deleted for returning an insult to a Trumper.

          1. As I said, that is rare. I think if you think this is common, you should back it up with some examples, Joe Nobody.
            I will add one recommendation; it is best to refrain from repeatedly calling the moderator “a cretin”.
            If you are rude enough and stupid and/ or arrogant enough to do that, those kinds of comments ( in addition to other offensive comments) are just asking for it.
            So don’t give us that phony victimization line about this blog catering to one side or the other.

  10. America is in a condition of hysteria, incoherence, chaos, anarchy and rebellion.

    President Abraham Lincoln seized power, neutralized the legislative and judicial branches and ruled by executive order and proclamation to “Save the Union.”

    President Donald Trump must now seize power, neutralize the legislative and judicial branches and rule by executive order and proclamation to “Save the Republic.”

    1. difference was Lincoln had the northern yankee press and most powerful industrial interests backing him

      trump does not, obviously, can’t even command his own CIA and state department not to sabotage him.

      aggressive culling was in order decades ago, probably now it’s too late, just have to muddle on through with half measures

  11. Mr. Turley, I found your testimony today to be deeply disturbing. You ignore the presidents own admissions, the content of the transcript, to focus on technicalities of the obstruction issues! As your colleagues put it so eloquently, Trump brazenly placed his own political interests ahead of the interests of the country, and that goes to the core of why impeachment even exists. I, for one, would very much like to see you discuss that point with your colleagues! Does it give you pause to know that your testimony gives cover to the cynical and dangerous GOP position that Trump is, essentially, a monarch and beyond reproach?

    What goes through your mind when Trump is on the White House lawn and openly asks Russia and China to investigate the Bidens? Why doesn’t the audaciousness of that illegality overwhelm your sensitivity to possible Congressional overreach? I’m genuinely perplexed because you don’t seem to be a red hat wearing moron, and certainly your arguments sound rational, but you are essentially defending a man who has demonstrated that there is no interest in the world more important than his own, time and again, and if you defend him, and give cover to his allies, then responsibility for the damage he does to our nation is shared with you.

    Respectfully, a proud American.

    1. gosh josh, very harsh!

      the professor talks about the actual elements of bribery, you call that a technicality? Can Congress just redefine any law it wants for the purpose of this proceeding, willy nilly? that would be the essence of abusive and arbitrary exercise of power.

      Due process arguments: that’s what most lawyers defending the accused tend to do, from the top on down to your local courthouse….. its the very essence of due process that “Technicalities” may apply to defects against any accused person.

    2. Mr. Turley is being paid to make these arguments. He does not have to like his clients – he has only to represent them to the best of his ability. He did the nest he could based on the fact that his client is guilty on all charges.

    3. josh:

      “deeply disturbing …Respectfully, a proud American.”
      *************

      Waiting for the Soros talking point cliche that actually translates to “Boy, am I pissed.” As for the epithet, let’s go with “proud conclusion jumper.” Given this mush bowl of a comment and utter dearth of factual support, it is more apt. Tell me you’re not in Turley’s classes. Tell me!!

    4. “…the cynical and dangerous GOP position that Trump is, essentially, a monarch and beyond reproach”

      Ah, yes; like the Dems who lined up in front of Obama, wearing knee pads and lobster bibs, following Monica’s advice.

  12. in a nutshell, Turley is saying 3 things::

    Congress must respect the intention of impeachment as something more than “maladminstration,” and more that what’s like a “no confidence vote” in parliamentary systems. It’s intended to be narrower, more defined, and harder to make out against a sitting president than that.

    Now about the articles:

    a) the bribery article does not establish the elements of the crime on their face
    the Congress is using its own interpretation of “bribery” which has been explicitly rejected by the SCOTUS in a previous case which established narrow elements and not an expansive one like Congress is presuming

    b) obstruction is very weak because Trump has asserted executive privilege,. he has little time to reply, mountains of information has been requested, and the Congress is not allowing him to try his claims in federal court. this is to say that Congress is abusing its power by negating the judiciary branche’s possible role in sorting out the claims of privilege. obviously the Congress reading of privilege would destroy it altogether– which would also go against precedent. he compared this to the third article of Nixon’s impeachment which was also likewise flawed.

    THANKS PROFESSOR FOR THE LESSONS! AWESOME MOMENT.

    1. Funny, he didn’t have the same feelings when he opined on impeaching Clinton for perjury. In the grander sceme of things, Trump is a threat to our entire democracy and thinks he’s above the law. He has vioted the rule of law, fired those that get in his way, and put his self interest above country. You can argue constitutional law forever, the fact is Trump committed a high crime and needs to be impeached!

      1. false, matter of opinion, elements not established, articles defective on their face
        back to twitter john, you will find lots of company there.

          1. yes john i continue to wonder why he likes twitter so much, but, evidently it’s tied into the search engines so deeply it gets the word out. cheers!

            stop by again when the storm blows over, welcome to all new users!

        1. Mr. Kurtz,
          I think Mr. Tripp missed the point that Turley made that in both the cases of Nixon and Clinton, there was an underlying crime that started impeachment proceedings.
          And he connected that to the less expansive definition of “bribery” held by the Courts.
          I doubt that Mr. Tripp would be able grasp those points even if he were to review the testimony a dozen times.
          One of the PBS legal analyst ( Sol Weisenberg?, I think) commented that he was surprised that Democrats approved of the selection of Jonathan Turley for the Republican side.
          He thought it was a mistake for the Democrats to allow someone that competent, experienced, and articulate on the other side.
          Similar views were expressed by legal analysts from other networks.

          1. Anonymous:

            “I think Mr. Tripp missed the point that Turley made that in both the cases of Nixon and Clinton, there was an underlying crime that started impeachment proceedings.”

            *********************

            Actually, he emphasized that there was a BIPARTISAN AGREED UPON underlying crime.

              1. that really hit like a ton of bricks. i was listening to npr at the time. very strong!

                proud to have spent a lot of time chatting humble thoughts here. however small the contribution, it feels worthy now, because Turley made history with is wise remarks…. Doesn’t happen very often for professors.

                reminds me of the best days in constitutional law during law school, good memories, favorite class

                I just wish some of my dead mentors could have been here today to hear these remarks. They would have really appreciated the moment. Turley really aced it.

      2. John C. Tripp – Trump has the right to fire whomever he wants., Asking for a favor is not a high crime or misdemeanor since it fall under a treaty obligation.

      3. Kurtz, doesn’t this sound like the Lame Street Media where one commenter comments and all the others essentially repeat the same comment? Thank goodness someone has told these jerks what to say or they would be left at home in their mother’s basement playing with their toes.

          1. Far more original than your cr-p and it has merit. You guys don’t seem to deal with facts or the law and apparently have no concern for this great Republic. In 2020 you can continue to call for the impeachment of Trump after he is reelected by the people.

            1. If the election hadn’t been poisoned by Russia, or in the alternate universe Ukraine, we would have had a very different outcome. You don’t seem to get that! May the best candidate win — fairly and without outside interfearance. I think we can both agree on that.

              1. JCP:
                Please state every vote changed by Russia, the Ukraine or Men from Mars to Trump’s favor. Then please advise how you know. Get past that and we won’t think of you every time we see Bozo.

              2. “If the election”

                Tripp, you are full of the word IF.

                If the FBI didn’t “spy” on Trump he might have won all 50 states. If the FBI had investigated Hillary properly then the Democrats might have found a better candidate. If Hunter Biden hadn’t flown with Joe Biden to China and Ukraine leading in close prosimity to huge financial deals leading to the question of quid pro Joe we might not be having these hearings. If Hillary hadn’t been dealing inappropriately with the Ukranians during the election again these hearings might not have occurred.

                Lots of if’s that you wish to avoid like the plague which they are. Hillary Clinton lost. Get over it and fight for 2020. Likely Trump will win in 2020 in great part due to the fact that the Democrats spent their time since day one trying to impeach him instead of doing the buisiness of government. Hopefully Republicans will keep the Senate and take the House so that the Democrats are forced to reconsider their actions and return as decent Americans.

                1. John Tripp, I see that your response was removed, You used the word “if”, but you were never able to provide facts but you did procede on making a lot of dumb nassty statements. Why is it that people of your nature are unable to provide facts and proof? We know you are frustrated because you don’t have what it takes to formulate a reasonable argument. That seems to be par for the course for a lot of the new names that have appeared on the blog.

                1. Paul, they used a diluted poison because Hillary still lives. So typical of Ruskies

                  This is to John C. Peter Shill “never end a sentence with a preposition” Tripp

              3. “If the election hadn’t been poisoned by Russia, or in the alternate universe Ukraine, we would have had a very different outcome.”

                Why, sure.

                Mr. Tripp, it’s evident that, like so many elitists on the left, you fail to give Americans credit for having the brains to make their own judgements and cast their own votes in favor of the common good.

                The voting public failed to elect Her Nibs. Yet any demographic with the intelligence to chew gum and walk simultaneously would have inevitably elected Our Lady of Eternal Condescension, right? We know this, yet it did not occur. Therefore, one of two conclusions is inescapable. Either Americans don’t have the brains to come in outta the rain, or they are extremely gullible That’s essentially what you’re saying. Either way, it’s apparent that you don’t have much faith in your fellow citizens. It may even be a form of micro-aggression you don’t realize you’re demonstrating.

                What do you think of this as a slogan? “If it ain’t left, it ain’t right!”

                1. You sure know how to spin a lie with your folksy banter. Bet you live in a fancy double wide, drive an F-150, and sport the latest in assault rifle technology. Yes, you are America! Good God help us.

                  1. Bet you live in a fancy double wide, drive an F-150, and sport the latest in assault rifle technology.

                    LOL! You say that as if it’s supposed to be insulting.

                    1. No, it’s just a reflection of who you are and how you live. Trump and the Gang Of Putin would die before spending time with your kind. The joke’s on you buddy.

                    2. No, it’s just a reflection of who you are and how you live.

                      Once again, you mistake a compliment for an insult. My kind, are serving this country in places like Afghanistan, you know, where President Trump spent time on Thanksgiving Day.

                      Try again.

                    3. It took the President three years to visit, and then he just talked about himself. If that’s your hero, sorry to disappoint you. He’s all for himself and will screw this country over just like he has his ex wives, his companies, his friends and his supporters. As for those that serve, I live in Georgia where we have many military bases. Don’t lecture me about service. What have you done for America that makes you so special?

                    4. It took the President three years to visit,

                      And contrary to your previous comment, he didn’t die. Sorry to disappoint you.

                      He’s all for himself and will screw this country over just like he has his ex wives, his companies, his friends and his supporters.

                      Will, huh? Therein lies your problem in trying to impeach. There is no evidence to support he’s screwed over the country. There is however a ton of evidence to prove he’s screwed over any chance the Democrats will legitimately defeat him in the 2020 election. Hence the Democrats unholy alliance with rogue elements within various executive branch agencies and other foreign actors. The evidence for that will be forthcoming.

                      What have you done for America that makes you so special?

                      I appreciate once again the compliment, but I don’t consider myself special. I’m a retired Navy Chief Petty Officer and I consider it an honor to continue to support and defend the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. That’s not a lecture; that’s a promise you and your ilk continue to fail to understand.

                    5. Olly when trouble comes people like Tripp hide behind their mother’s skirts and when it involves war you will have to fight to protect them while they hide under a rock.

                    6. Allan,
                      Well this is war and we are fighting to protect him, not unlike his mom does when he wants to run out into moving traffic.

              4. see this is actually the brilliance of the Russian meddling. they actually meddled in favor of BOTH candidates.

                then when one won, the other could point the finger and blame Russians.

                which destroys confidence in the electoral system as such

                which undermines the American system as such

                the strategy is called a “Fork’ in chess. they’re good at chess.

                the sucker play is how the Democrats have bought into this gambit so wholeheartedly.
                deepening the damage.

                a paltry amount of interference by foreigners should just be ignored, and quietly addressed and prevented by law enforcement to the extent possible— WITHOUT discrediting the system

                but the Dems were to greedy not to take the bait.

                Trust me Putin LOVES what they’re doing here, to deepen the divide in America

                the funny thing is the only Dem POTUS candidate that truly gets this is Tulsi, who talks about uniting, and she’s the only one who does.

                And they call her a “Russian asset” for not going along with the stupidity.

                Folks, there’s millions of good hearted, smart, Democrat voters out there.
                For the sake of the Republic, my good Democratic friends, at least in respect of the 2020 POTUS vote, do NOT vote for more of the same mischief from the Pelosi leadership – reject it strongly with a vote for Trump, even if you run blue all the way down the rest of your ballot.

        1. yes i agree with the very last comment about how disgusting the times have become.

          but i sense you would not have liked the earlier, healthier times much either.
          in older times the strong would have resolved these things with decisive firmness, minus the chatter.

          you may get a taste of that again yet, we’ll see

          1. Hadn’t felt compelled to provide historical context. But I see “unprecedented” could be looked at a # of ways. For the record, some of the most disgraceful times in our historym happened way before now e.g, slavery. To clarify, I meant specifically the steady barrage of behaviors by this “Administration” in disregard of rule of law & our Constitution. And that doesn’t even begin to touch lowlife mannerisms– let alone the malignant narcissism & whatever other profiles underly the destructive, pathological unfitness of the person occupying the Office of our presidency.

            1. Sherrie:

              “To clarify, I meant specifically the steady barrage of behaviors by this “Administration” in disregard of rule of law & our Constitution.
              ***********************

              Great. Then it should be exceptionally easy for you to identify three of them and state the proof that has so far not been adduced by an relentless three-year DOJ investigation that resulted in no charges and egg on the face of every leftist from the media to the DNC. Waiting ….

              1. Anon stated the facts often but since you can’t refute you choose to either ignore or deny. No integrity, you chose the right profession

                  1. Consider who you’re telling that to, Mespo. YNOT’s mission does not go beyond proving that he is an ignorant, obnoxious jerk.

    2. this is not a juridical process, and POTUS have enough personnel to hand over the requested documents, now the HoR had to go to the court to demand the pieces, needed for their report. (and is also not a ‘maladministration’and I am certain that this professor did not read the whole report (he might not be able to do that) and have slight notice what is said/told by wittiness

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