“Even if we started a trial yesterday, there’s not enough time to remove him from office,” says McConnell spokesmanConstitutional lawyer Alan Dershowitz also says that Congress has no jurisdiction to impeach a private citizen and remove him from office
The office of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell released a statement rejecting Democrat calls to reconvene the Senate in an emergency session to impeach President Trump before January 20.
McConnell’s office sent a memo to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.) asserting that Republicans won’t agree to a Friday emergency session to enable House Democrats to present an article of impeachment to the Senate while Trump is still in office.
“Even if we started a trial yesterday, there’s not enough time to remove him from office,” an official with McConnell’s office said in the statement.
“It would require the consent of all 100 senators to conduct any business of any kind during the scheduled pro forma sessions prior to January 19,” the memo said.
“The Senate trial would therefore begin after President Trump’s term has expired — either one hour after its expiration on Jan. 20 or twenty-five hours after its expiration on Jan. 21,” it stated.
The announcement effectively derails Democrat hopes of successfully impeaching Donald Trump, according to constitutional lawyer Alan Dershowitz.
“There won’t be a trial,” Dershowitz said Saturday. “The Senate will never have a trial because the earliest you could have a trial take place would be at 1 o’clock in the afternoon on January 20th, which is when Donald Trump becomes a private citizen.”
“And the jurisdiction of Congress doesn’t contend to private citizens. If it did, if you can impeach and remove a private citizen in order to prevent him or her from running against the president, then you can impeach me.”
“So under the absurd notion that’s being put forward by some Senators and pundits, you can try somebody after they leave the office of the president, it would mean that 350 million people would be subject to impeachment and ‘removal or disqualification from office.’”
Even if the Senate did somehow manage to vote to impeach Trump in time, he still hasn’t even committed any impeachable offenses as laid out by the Constitution.
[Trump] made a speech similar to those made by many people over the last 100 years, from labor leaders, civil rights leaders, Klan leaders — good and bad, both — who say, ‘Go to the Capitol, protest, go to the Capitol, fight back,’ and then what happened in the Capitol is, of course, a total disaster, and the people who did it should be prosecuted to the hilt, but to prosecute the speaker would be to violate the core principles of freedom of speech that we had for for many decades and many generations.”
The House is still debating whether to impeach Trump.