'Brazen and unlawful': Donald Trump's legal team rejects impeachment charges

WION Web Team New Delhi, India Jan 19, 2020, 08.10 AM(IST) Edited By: Bharat Sharma

File photo: US President Donald Trump. Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

  • Trump was recently impeached on account of two articles
  • He has repeatedly denied any involvement in wrongdoings

The legal team of United States President Donald Trump yesterday rejected the impeachment hearings against their client. In the six-page document, his lawyers refer to the House of Representatives' impeachment efforts as a ''dangerous attack'' on Americans and their intrinsic right to vote.

Trump was recently impeached on account of two articles: ''abuse of power'' and the ''obstruction of Congress'', which was approved by the Democratic-led House last year.

The trial against Trump will begin on Tuesday in the Senate, which is mostly under the control of Republicans.

Image: Screenshot from the statement of Trump's legal team | Reuters

Trump has repeatedly denied any involvement in the wrongdoings he's been accused of. He refers to the impeachment drive as an effort to undo his presidential victory.

In the Senate, Trump is expected not to get impeached, for no Republican senators yet have voiced support for the same.

The White House counsel is led by Pat Cipollone, who will get the support of Trump's personal lawyer Jay Sekulow. Ken Starr, the star-lawyer involved in Bill Clinton's impeachment in the 1990s has also joined the team. Celebrity lawyer Alan Dershowitz is also in Trump's dream-team.

Also read: Impeachment dream team: Meet US President Trump's star-studded legal team

In their response, Cipollone and Sekulow referred to the articles of impeachment as ''a dangerous attack on the right of the American people to freely choose their president''.

Further, in the six-page document, the team called the impeachment hearings "a brazen and unlawful attempt to overturn the results of the 2016 election and interfere with the 2020 election".

Watch: Senate begins trial on Donald Trump's impeachment

Trump is facing impeachment on the charges of abusing office especially in relation to the Ukraine scandal. He was accused of coercing Ukrainian authorities into investigating Joe Biden, a Democratic presidential candidate. He allegedly withheld aid worth $400 million to Ukraine.  

Ukrainian counterpart President Volodymyr Zelensky has also denied the claims.

Image: US President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump and son Barron Trump make their way to board Marine One from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC on January 17, 2020 | AFP

"The articles of impeachment are constitutionally invalid on their face. They fail to allege any crime or violation of law whatsoever," the defence team said.

On the other hand, the House managers, ie, the prosecutors called Trump's conduct ''the worst nightmare'' of those who framed the US constitution.

''President Trump abused the power of his office to solicit foreign interference in our elections for his own personal political gain, thereby jeopardizing our national security, the integrity of our elections, and our democracy'', the managers said in a statement.

(With inputs from AFP and Reuters)