Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) complimented President Donald Trump’s legal team Tuesday for “taking apart” the Democrats’ case for impeachment and removal, “without belaboring it” as the House managers had done.
Cotton was reflecting after the second day of opening arguments for the president’s legal team, highlighted by former Harvard Law School professors Alan Dershowitz, where Cotton himself had also studied law before joining the U.S. Army and serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Cotton said that Dershowitz’s argument that nothing alleged against the president was impeachable was “compelling.”
He was scathing in his criticism of Democrats’ calls for more witnesses in the Senate, after they themselves had decided not to call many of those same witnesses in the House before passing articles of impeachment.
Cotton noted that Senators anticipated hearing from the president’s lawyers for one more day, then two days of written questions submitted by Senators to the Chief Justice, followed by oral answers from the lawyers.
He in the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton, each party had a chance to ask 53 questions, and the lawyers were restricted to answers of five minutes. He said to expect most Senators to ask questions.
A key development in the Trump trial, he said, was the way President Trump’s lawyers explained former Vice President Joe Biden’s conflicts of interests. House managers would have to explain that, Cotton said.
The Arkansas Senator added that lead House manager Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) seemed to have earned his “shifty” nickname by repeatedly insisting that Trump had asked Ukraine to “dig up dirt” on his opponent.
“This is not a question of digging up dirt,” Cotton said. The Obama administration, he noted, had concerns about Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, working for the corrupt Ukrainian oligarch who backed Burisma.
Hunter Biden was working for a corrupt Ukrainian oligarch. Days after that oligarch’s home was raised and his property seized by Ukrainian authorities … Joe Biden was on the phone three times with the [previous] president of Ukraine. And lo and behold, three weeks later, that prosecutor was fired. So this is not a question of “digging up dirt.” This is a question of getting to the bottom of what is an obvious and glaring conflict of interest.
Cotton noted that it would have been “unseemly” enough for Hunter Biden merely to be on the board of Burisma, but it was worse that Joe Biden had not recused himself from running U.S. Ukraine policy.
“It’s the most basic step that any member of government would expect to take when their family member is working for a company.”
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.