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Nick Akerman, who served on the Watergate prosecution team, pushed back on the Republican “hearsay” talking point in the impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump, as the former Assistant U.S. Attorney noted that he has put culprits away for “30 or 40 years” based on witness testimony.
Akerman made the comment during Mediaite’s impeachment debate on Thursday after Mediaite founder Dan Abrams — who moderated the debate — asked if it bothers him that Democrats are calling on “witnesses [who] heard things from other people” in their investigation into Trump’s alleged executive abuse and quid pro quo deal with Ukraine.
“No, not at all,” Akerman replied after Abrams, ABC’s chief legal analyst, asked if the hearsay argument “troubles” him, “because people are sent away 30 years in prison for that.”
“Those are statements in furthering a conspiracy, that is not considered hearsay in a court of law,” he added. “Why was Richard Nixon an unindicted co-conspirator in the Watergate case? It was because we wanted to put into evidence his statements in furtherance of the conspiracy. The federal laws of evidence allow statements in furtherance of a conspiracy to be admitted against all conspirators, so in this particular case everyone is acting like as an agent for Donald Trump.”
“Putting aside the admissibility, we don’t have to apply the rules of that in an impeachment proceeding … does it bother you?” Abrams followed, to which Akerman doubled down on his point that he has “put people away for 30 or 40 years based on that kind of testimony.”
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