Democrats’ witnesses at the Judiciary Committee impeachment hearing Wednesday exhibited little patience for Republican members of the panel.
Pamela Karlan, a Stanford Law professor, said she was ‘insulted’ when Judiciary ranking member Doug Collins insinuated that she had not read the facts of the case before appearing to testify in the public hearing Wednesday – and another Democratic-called witness said Congress didn’t need to prove Trump committed a crime to impeach him.
‘Mr. Collins I would like to say to you, sir, that I read transcripts of every one of the witnesses who appeared in the live hearing because I would not speak about these things without reviewing the facts,’ Karlan directed to the Georgia Republican. ‘I’m insulted by the suggestion that, as a law professor, I don’t care about those facts.’
Earlier, during Collins’ opening remarks, he took a shot at the constitutional law expert.
Pamela Karlan, one of the three Democrat-called witnesses at the Judiciary hearing Wednesday, said she was ‘insulted’ by Republicans. ‘I’m insulted by the suggestion that, as a law professor, I don’t care about those facts,’ she said
Her comments came after Republican ranking member Doug Collins grilled the law professors testifying, claiming they couldn’t possibly know all the facts of the case. ‘America will see why most people don’t go to law school. No offense to our professors,’ he said
Another Democrat witness, Michael Gerhardt, claimed that Trump didn’t have to commit a crime for Democrats to impeach him and remove him from office
‘America will see why most people don’t go to law school. No offense to our professors,’ Collins said, realizing that all four witnesses, including one called by the Republicans, teach at various law schools.
‘But please, really, we’re bringing you in here today to testify on stuff most of you have already written about, all four, for the opinions that we already know out of the classrooms that maybe you’re getting ready for finals in, to discuss things that you probably haven’t had a chance — unless you’re really good on TV of watching the hearings over the last couple of weeks, you couldn’t have possibly actually digested the Adam Schiff report from yesterday or the Republican response in any real way,’ he criticized.
Karlan countered that she spent her whole Thanksgiving break reading transcripts and going over the facts of the case, claiming she even had an already-made Turkey delivered to her door so she could engage in at least some of the festivities of the holiday.
Michael Gerhardt, a law professor at the University of North Carolina who was also called to testify by Democrats, asserted that there didn’t need to be proof of a ‘statutory crime’ for Congress to move forward with charging the president with impeachable offenses and removing him from office.
‘Does a high crime and misdemeanor require an actual statutory crime?’ the Democrat’s lawyer Norman Eisen questioned of Gerhardt.
Republicans’ first approved witness, Jonathan Turley, said Democrats were basing their impeachment inquiry on secondhand information
‘No, it plainly does not,’ the professor claimed. ‘Everything we know about the history of impeachment reinforces the conclusion that impeachable offenses do not have to be crimes and, again, not all crimes are impeachable offenses. We look, again, at the context and gravity of the misconduct.’
Even though Gerhardt says there doesn’t need to be a crime, all three Democrat-called lawyers insist that his actions do amount o the high crimes and misdemeanors detailed in the Constitutions.
Gerhardt said they are unanimous on this point, talking about himself, Karlan and Harvard Law Professor Noah Feldman.
The fourth law professor, Jonathan Turley, who teaches at George Washington University Law School, was the first Republican-called witness approved by Democrats.
He says that while a case can be made for impeachment, the current inquiry in the Democrat-controlled House is not valid since its based on secondhand information.
Gerhardt also prefaced his testimony by declaring he is not a supporter of the current president, and admitted he voted against Trump in 2016.
‘I am concerned about lowering impeachment standards to fit a scarcity of evidence,’ Turley said in his opening remarks.