During a break in Wednesday’s House Judiciary impeachment hearing, two Fox News analysts who have largely been on opposite sides of the impeachment fence found themselves in agreement on one thing: Republican witness Jonathan Turley was “simply wrong” to argue that Congress was abusing its power by impeaching the president.
In his opening statement and throughout his early testimony, Turley—a George Washington University law professor—pointed the finger at House Democrats and attempted to turn the tables on their allegations President Donald Trump abused his power and obstructed justice.
“Then you have an obstruction case, because a court issues an order, and unless they stay that order by a higher court, you have obstruction,” Turley declared. “But I can’t emphasize this enough and I’ll say it just one more time, if you impeach a president, if you make a high crime and misdemeanor out of going to the courts, it is an abuse of power. It’s your abuse of power. You’re doing precisely what you’re criticizing the president for doing.”
“Where I disagree with my dear friend—I’ve worked with him and testified alongside him—Jon Turley on the significance of obstruction of justice, he is forgetting that the House has the sole—S-O-L-E—power of impeachment,” Napolitano proclaimed. “It does not need to go to a court for approval.”
“It doesn’t need to go to court to get the subpoenas enforced,” he added. “When the president receives a subpoena, or in this case Mick Mulvaney, Mike Pompeo receive a subpoena, and they throw it in a drawer. They do not comply or challenge because the president told them to; that is the act of obstruction.”
Fox News contributor Andy McCarthy, a former U.S attorney who has been a vocal critic of impeachment, meanwhile, backed up Napolitano’s remarks.
“I happen to agree with the judge,” McCarthy noted. “I do not think that to the extent that Jon Turley is taking the position that you either have to or should go to the court if you are Congress to enforce your subpoenas, I think that is simply wrong.”
“I don’t think the framers would have thought that the Article I branch needed the assistance of the Article III branch to impeach an officer of the Article II branch,” the National Review columnist continued. “I just don’t think that it’s conceivable.”
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