A reason Democrats won't wait: Trump cases tied up in court
Added 12-05-19 03:22:02pm EST - “Legal scholar Jonathan Turley told House Democrats that they are rushing the impeachment of President Donald Trump and that they instead could be enlisting the courts to try to help procure the testimony of key figures in Trump's…” - Washingtontimes.com
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WASHINGTON (AP) - Legal scholar Jonathan Turley told House Democrats that they are rushing the impeachment of President Donald Trump and that they instead could be enlisting the courts to try to help procure the testimony of key figures in Trump’s effort to get Ukraine to investigate political rival Joe Biden.
But that might take months, or longer, and even with a fairly speedy resolution in the courts, Democrats probably would have to delay an impeachment vote well into 2020 - and the heart of the presidential campaign.
The legal system often moves slowly, as shown by several ongoing disputes between Trump and House lawmakers and others, some related to impeachment. He has lost repeatedly in the lower courts, but those rulings have been put on hold pending appeals.
The Judiciary Committee has sought the secret grand jury testimony from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation for months, even before the formal impeachment inquiry into Trump’s actions in Ukraine began. U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell ordered that the materials be handed over by Oct. 30, but Howell’s order has been put on hold while the Trump administration appeals to the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. A three-judge panel of that court has scheduled arguments for Jan. 3, and it’s unclear how quickly a ruling would follow. A Supreme Court appeal also would be a possibility, further delaying a final outcome.
Also scheduled for appeals court arguments on Jan. 3 is the Judiciary Committee’s effort to compel testimony from former White House counsel Donald McGahn. The administration has asserted that Congress can’t force the officials closest to the president to testify on Capitol Hill. U.S. District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson rejected that argument in a ruling late last month and ordered McGahn to appear. The appeals court put the matter on hold while it considers the administration’s appeal. It’s not clear when a ruling might come and the administration could take the issue to the Supreme Court.
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