Trump’s attorneys issue a powerful response to the Articles of Impeachment

Anyone who has watched a Trump rally or followed Trump’s Twitter feed knows that he’s been open about his disdain for the House’s impeachment proceedings. However, now that the House formally delivered the Articles of Impeachment to the Senate, Trump’s lawyers can finally make known the President’s official legal stand against the Democrats’ blatant political effort to overturn the 2016 election. 

In five-and-a-half fiery pages, Jay Alan Sekulow and Pat A. Cipollone attack both the impeachment process and the legal and factual bases (or lack thereof) underlying the articles of impeachment. Sekulow and Cipollone understand that the real audience is the American people, so the document is written in ordinary English, not legalese.

Regarding the entire impeachment, the lawyers state that this warped process attacks the American people and free elections:

The Articles of Impeachment submitted by House Democrats are a dangerous attack on the right of the American people to freely choose their President. This is a brazen and unlawful attempt to overturn the results of the 2016 election and interfere with the 2020 election-now just months away. The highly partisan and reckless obsession with impeaching the President began the day he was inaugurated and continues to this day.

For the first Article of Impeachment, which alleges “abuse of power,” Sekulow and Cipollone explain that, contrary to the Constitution’s demand for “high Crimes and Misdemeanors,” the first Article fails to state any legal violation. Not only does it fail to identify actual legal wrongdoing, the facts alleged also fail to show that Trump abused his powers:

At all times, the President has faithfully and effectively executed the duties of his Office on behalf of the American people. The President's actions on the July 25,2019, telephone call with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine (the "July 25 call"), as well as on the earlier April 21, 2019, telephone call (the "April 21 call"), and in all surrounding and related events, were constitutional, perfectly legal, completely appropriate, and taken in furtherance of our national interest.

The attorneys also note that the best evidence is the telephone call transcript, which Trump released immediately. Ukrainian officials, from President Zelenskyy on down, all support the transcript and the tenor of Trump’s deals with Ukraine.

Additionally, Gordon Sondland, Ambassador to the European Union, testified that Trump disavowed any quid pro quo, as did Senator Ron Johnson. It was only a “fundamentally flawed and illegitimate process” that let the House Democrats turn undisputed facts and legitimate constitutional powers into an article that is “constitutionally invalid, founded on falsehoods, and must be rejected.”

Sekulow and Cipollone make equally short shrift of the Second Article for obstruction of Congress. Trump was within the purview of his constitutional powers and, indeed, “acted with extraordinary and unprecedented transparency by declassifying and releasing the transcript of the July 25 call that is at the heart of this matter.”

Instead, it was the House Democrats who abused their powers by issuing “a series of unconstitutional subpoenas for documents and testimony,” something they did without the necessary predicate of a congressional vote. In addition, although they don’t use the word, the attorneys state facts describing the kangaroo court proceedings in which the House Democrats engaged.

What the House Democrats did, say the attorneys, was to violate the Constitution from root to branch by trying to disenfranchise American voters and take control of Executive powers:

In the first Article, the House attempts to seize the President's power under Article II of the Constitution to determine foreign policy. In the second Article, the House attempts to control and penalize the assertion of the Executive Branch’s constitutional privileges, while simultaneously seeking to destroy the Framers’ system of checks and balances. By approving the Articles, the House violated our constitutional order, illegally abused its power of impeachment, and attempted to obstruct  President Trump's ability to faithfully execute the duties of his Office. They sought to undermine his authority under Article II of the Constitution, which vests the entirety of “[t]he executive Power” in “a President of the United States of America.”

There is nothing more to add. Sekulow and Cipillone are correct in every respect.

Anyone who has watched a Trump rally or followed Trump’s Twitter feed knows that he’s been open about his disdain for the House’s impeachment proceedings. However, now that the House formally delivered the Articles of Impeachment to the Senate, Trump’s lawyers can finally make known the President’s official legal stand against the Democrats’ blatant political effort to overturn the 2016 election. 

In five-and-a-half fiery pages, Jay Alan Sekulow and Pat A. Cipollone attack both the impeachment process and the legal and factual bases (or lack thereof) underlying the articles of impeachment. Sekulow and Cipollone understand that the real audience is the American people, so the document is written in ordinary English, not legalese.

Regarding the entire impeachment, the lawyers state that this warped process attacks the American people and free elections:

The Articles of Impeachment submitted by House Democrats are a dangerous attack on the right of the American people to freely choose their President. This is a brazen and unlawful attempt to overturn the results of the 2016 election and interfere with the 2020 election-now just months away. The highly partisan and reckless obsession with impeaching the President began the day he was inaugurated and continues to this day.

For the first Article of Impeachment, which alleges “abuse of power,” Sekulow and Cipollone explain that, contrary to the Constitution’s demand for “high Crimes and Misdemeanors,” the first Article fails to state any legal violation. Not only does it fail to identify actual legal wrongdoing, the facts alleged also fail to show that Trump abused his powers:

At all times, the President has faithfully and effectively executed the duties of his Office on behalf of the American people. The President's actions on the July 25,2019, telephone call with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine (the "July 25 call"), as well as on the earlier April 21, 2019, telephone call (the "April 21 call"), and in all surrounding and related events, were constitutional, perfectly legal, completely appropriate, and taken in furtherance of our national interest.

The attorneys also note that the best evidence is the telephone call transcript, which Trump released immediately. Ukrainian officials, from President Zelenskyy on down, all support the transcript and the tenor of Trump’s deals with Ukraine.

Additionally, Gordon Sondland, Ambassador to the European Union, testified that Trump disavowed any quid pro quo, as did Senator Ron Johnson. It was only a “fundamentally flawed and illegitimate process” that let the House Democrats turn undisputed facts and legitimate constitutional powers into an article that is “constitutionally invalid, founded on falsehoods, and must be rejected.”

Sekulow and Cipollone make equally short shrift of the Second Article for obstruction of Congress. Trump was within the purview of his constitutional powers and, indeed, “acted with extraordinary and unprecedented transparency by declassifying and releasing the transcript of the July 25 call that is at the heart of this matter.”

Instead, it was the House Democrats who abused their powers by issuing “a series of unconstitutional subpoenas for documents and testimony,” something they did without the necessary predicate of a congressional vote. In addition, although they don’t use the word, the attorneys state facts describing the kangaroo court proceedings in which the House Democrats engaged.

What the House Democrats did, say the attorneys, was to violate the Constitution from root to branch by trying to disenfranchise American voters and take control of Executive powers:

In the first Article, the House attempts to seize the President's power under Article II of the Constitution to determine foreign policy. In the second Article, the House attempts to control and penalize the assertion of the Executive Branch’s constitutional privileges, while simultaneously seeking to destroy the Framers’ system of checks and balances. By approving the Articles, the House violated our constitutional order, illegally abused its power of impeachment, and attempted to obstruct  President Trump's ability to faithfully execute the duties of his Office. They sought to undermine his authority under Article II of the Constitution, which vests the entirety of “[t]he executive Power” in “a President of the United States of America.”

There is nothing more to add. Sekulow and Cipillone are correct in every respect.