George Washington University Law School Professor Jonathan Turley, who served last month as one of three House Judiciary Committee legal academic witnesses on the topic of the U.S. Constitution’s specified criteria for impeachment, has been very outspoken since his testimony. Shortly after testifying, Turley took to the Los Angeles Times to pen an over-arching message to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and House Democrats: You have rushed this process and have not sufficiently convinced the American public. “The problem is that this is the thinnest record of any modern impeachment as well as arguably the shortest impeachment investigation in history,” he wrote in the Times.
Later last month, as The Daily Wire reported, Turley — who, despite being House Republicans’ lone witness at the aforementioned House Judiciary Committee hearing last month, is hardly a Republican partisan and is best described as an old-school liberal civil libertarian — took to The Hill to defend his decision to testify as a Republican-called witness. “Journalist Henry Louis Mencken once observed, ‘Say what you will about the Ten Commandments, you must always come back to the pleasant fact that there are only ten of them,’” Turley wrote. “Despite unending respect for Mencken, this is an occasion in which I found him mistaken, after I violated the Eleventh Commandment, ‘Thou shalt not testify for Republicans.’”
Now, as Fox News reports, Turley has written a blog post that is simply scathing of Pelosi’s decision to delay the formal transmission of impeachment articles from the House of Representatives to the Senate in a (failed) attempt to extract procedural concessions from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) as to the conduct of a prospective impeachment trial.
“From the outset, the ploy of Pelosi withholding the House impeachment articles was as implausible as it was hypocritical,” Turley wrote yesterday in a column entitled, “Pelosi’s Blunder: How the House Destroyed its Own Case for Impeachment.”
“There was no reason why Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell would make concessions to get an impeachment that he loathed,” he continued. “More importantly, just a couple of days earlier, House leaders insisted that some of us were wrong to encourage them to wait on an impeachment vote to create a more complete record. Pelosi previously insisted that House committees could not pursue direct witnesses like former national security adviser John Bolton because there was no time to delay in getting this impeachment to the Senate. She then waited a month and counting to send the articles over to the Senate.”
“The fact is that Pelosi played into the hands of McConnell by first rushing this impeachment forward with an incomplete record and now giving him the excuse to summarily change the rules, or even to dismiss the articles,” Turley later added.
At the time that Pelosi announced her withholding of the formal transmission of impeachment articles, I pointed out Democrats’ hypocrisy in a New York Post op-ed:
Thorny legal issues aside, Pelosi’s gambit lays bare the brazen hypocrisy of the sanctimonious “norm”-worshippers. Most of Trump’s purportedly grievous sins pale in comparison to the destructive and destabilizing nature of Pelosi’s transmission delay — not to mention the unfair and underhanded nature of the proceedings in her own chamber.
The president may not have an explicit constitutional right to a Senate trial. But if Democrats really cared about rule of law and good order, they would have allowed the Framers’ process to unfold as it was supposed to do. Their delay tactics merely expose the frivolity of their Trump-induced mass hysteria.