Trump's lawyers on Sunday previewed their impeachment defense with the questionable assertion that the charges against him are invalid, adopting a position rejected by
The trial resumes on Tuesday with what could be a fight over the ground rules. By then, both sides will have submitted briefs and four Democratic presidential candidates will have been forced back to
What they're likely to hear in this extraordinary setting is the
“Criminal-like conduct is required,” said
But the “no crime, no impeachment” approach has been roundly dismissed by scholars and
The back-and-forth came as all concerned agitated for the
No senators were more eager to get going than the four Democratic presidential candidates facing the prospect of being marooned in the
“I'd rather be here,” said
During the trial, Sanders and other senators are required to sit for perhaps six grueling hours of proceedings daily — except Sundays, per
Mystery, however, abounded over the trial's ground rules. Senate Majority Leader
“The president deserves a fair trial. The American people deserve a fair trial. So let's have that fair trial,” said Democratic Rep.
But what's fair is as vigorously disputed as the basic question of whether Trump's pressure on
Whatever happens in the
For all of the suspense over the trial's structure and nature, some clues on what's to come sharpened on Sunday.
The president's lawyers bore down on the suggestion that House impeachment is invalid unless the accused violated
Johnson was ultimately acquitted by the
“The core of the impeachment parameters allege that crimes have been committed, treason, bribery, and things like that, in other words, other high crimes and misdemeanors,” Ray said Sunday.
“It’s comically bad. Dershowitz either knows better or should,” said Bowman, who said he had been Dershowitz's student as a law professor at Harvard.
Even as he made the case for Trump's acquittal, Dershowitz on Sunday distanced himself from the rest of Trump's defense team and said he would merely speak about the
“I'm a liberal Democrat ... I'm here as a constitutional lawyer,” Dershowitz said. "I'm here to lend my expertise on that issue and that issue alone.”
Crow spoke on