Listen: Judiciary Committee, Jerry Nadler, Bribery discussed on Today, Explained
"Because shift is closing out his own committees work. He says he's still going to do a little bit. But the main action is now shifting. Keep it because the main action is now shifting to the House Judiciary Committee under Jerry Nadler which brings us to today. How does the Judiciary Committee differ from the House? Intelligence Committee where we've been spending so much time. Recently is a bunch of brawlers sometimes on the Judiciary Committee. So I it should. It'd get much more feisty. I would say than the Intel Committee was so this is the committee chaired by representatives Jerry. Nadler of New York and it will be their job to who actually draw up the articles of impeachment based on shift in the Intelligence Committee's findings and one interesting thing thing about this transition is that there's a bit of trepidation about it from Democrats because Nadler's Judiciary Committee has had some high profile hearings already this year and the general consensus is they haven't gone that well for Democrats. Do you have an independent recollection a collection of whether you met with the president on that date Congress. I'm just trying to find in the mall report where it states that well you have it in front of you. I gave you the pres- The the page number we're in page. Ninety S was chairman. Start clock there's no I don't start the clock. Well he's filibustering bottom of page. Nine filibustering is a across the hall in. This is actual questions being nasty chairman. Parliamentary inquiry. Mr Chairman Jim was this point so oh I think the big question going into today for Nadler was whether he Helped by this new material bill helped by A new format in which a committee staff lawyer would get to do a big chunk of the questioning rather than end just switching right away to members whether he would be more effective with this new setup so Nadler opened up today with some boilerplate replayed on why we were all here. This committee has voted to impeach to President for obstructing justice but never before in the history of the republic have we been forced to consider the conduct of President who appears to have solicited personal political favors from a foreign government. Then it went to the committee's Republican Republican ranking member Doug Collins who is very fiery and upset there are no set facts here in fact. They're not anything that presents an impeachment. He's been here so the interesting thing that I come to with most everybody here is maybe a new time a new place and we may be all scrubbed up and looking pretty for impeachment but this is not an impeachment impeachment. This is just a simple railroad job collins as has been his stick at these hearings all year pretended to be extremely family extremely upset about various procedural things related to the hearing but none of very convincing it seemed like right out of the gate. Republicans uh-huh didn't even really want to be there was literally emotion to delay to a later date. May We have the motion read. Read as to what they'd when you're in the minority in the house. One of the few things you can do is to try to make a procedural Ruckus set by demanding votes on certain motions or trying to talk over the majority and Republicans really leaned into that at this hearing. I think generally it was just a a delay tactic. Because I miss jackson-lee Ms Jackson Lee Votes Mr Cohen. Mr I mean those roll-call votes took forever. It was painful forty people on the committee. I asked asked Miss Bass votes. Mr Richmond Mr Richmond. Boats yes Mr. Jeffreys Mr Jeffreys Votes Mr Sicily Mr Cellini votes Mr Smallville. Yes Mr Swoboda votes. Yes Mister Lou Mister. Then it went to the witnesses for their opening statements who were these four people who were called today and who called them they were all law. Professors three of them were called by Democrats and one by Republicans. The three democratic witnesses were Noah Feldman of Harvard Law. Pamela Emma La Carlin of Stanford La and Michael Gerhardt from the University of North Carolina School of law and the Republican witness was Jonathan Turley. Eh a professor at George Washington University law school a local exactly much of the discussion had to do with section four of article two of the constitution which gives Congress power to impeach. It says the President Vice President and all civil officers of the United States shall be removed from office unimpeachable four and conviction of treason. Bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. Did the witnesses spell out out exactly what this means for president trump. Yeah they each gave their own interpretations and naturally the witnesses chosen by Democrats rats were pretty straightforward saying that in their understanding of the Constitution and the framers intentions. What trump did absolutely Lee was an impeachable? Offense Noah Feldman of Harvard law went back to the constitutional convention in and quoted a discussion in which one delegate the governor of North Carolina man called William Davie immediately said if the president cannot be impeached quote. Vote he will spare no efforts or means whatever to get himself reelected. So in Feldman's interpretation this is exactly exactly what we're now looking at thus expressing the core concern that the president must be subordinate to the law and not above law and Pam. Tom Carlin also gave a pretty vivid more modern metaphor. Imagine living in part of Louisiana or Texas us. That's prone to devastating hurricanes and flooding. What would you think if you lived there? And your governor asked for a meeting with the president to discuss getting disaster aid the Congress provided for. What would you think if that president said? I would like you to do us a favor. I'll meet with you and I'll send the disaster-relief once you brand my opponent criminal and it was painfully obvious. At three of these people were sort of on the same page and one of them strongly long disagreed right. Yes so the other professor was Jonathan Turley and he was an interesting choice because the Republicans didn't go for a a firebrand conservative who was willing to defend everything trump did. I'm not a supporter of president trump. I voted voted against him. He took more of the tack of saying well. There may have been some wrongdoing here. But it's moving fast. Basically there hasn't been enough. Evidence presented defenses that have not been fully considered on subpoenaed witness with material evidence to impeach. The president on this record would expose every future president to the same type of inchoate impeachment. Once the Democrats Council started questioning these forelock. Professors Turley was mostly left out of the party wants. Republicans started questioning. Turley was getting a lot more action and the conversation seemed to center around whether there was an actual actual crime committed. Here was there so this was one attorneys arguments in defense of trump that the standard for what what towns is bribery. Should be high and that what we're talking about here in his view. It didn't meet that standard. He was saying. This is an Improv improvisational. Jazz close enough is not good enough. If you'RE GONNA accuse the president of bribery you need to make it stick. Because you're trying ranger remove a duly elected president of the United States and all this is important because the constitutional provision about breath when a president can be impeached specifically cites bribery. As one possible reason for that treason bribery or high crimes crimes and misdemeanors and so we originally the conversation was about a quid pro quo. That trump was demanding then. Democrats Democrats started shifting more towards arguing. That this was bribery or extortion which are actual criminal offenses and also more similar to what the Constitution itution says. It's impeachable bribery. I think they are probably on a bit firmer ground when they framed it as abuse of power though because the constitution doesn't say you can only impeach the president for bribery. It also says that catch-all category of high crimes and misdemeanors if if we cannot impeach a president who abused his office for personal advantage. We no longer live in a democracy. We live in a monarchy or we live under a dictatorship. That's why the framers created the possibility of impeachment. What comes next? Does the Judiciary Committee do this again. Tomorrow the next day next week there's been talk that Judiciary Sherry will hold at least one more hearing but they don't really seem to be preparing to call in a bunch of witnesses on the facts here. I think what they will do. Mainly is to move ahead with drafting these articles of impeachment. So that they can then be voted on in the committee and and sent eventually to the full House of Representatives. So that means we don't have to do a lot more judiciary committee hearings where Republicans are calling for votes and roll. Call every twenty minutes. I'm sorry you had to sit through this. The clerk will call the roll. Mr Mr Nadler Votes I. Hi Mr Richmond Mr Richmond. Yes Mr Jeffreys Mr Jeffreys Fellow just twelve obits yes."