Fox News legal analyst Andrew Napolitano had to explain the process of impeachment to a perplexed host of the morning show “Fox & Friends,” and the discussion only served to reinforce what we’ve long suspected: Brains are not a requirement for employment at the conservative network which is often referred to as Trump TV.
Host Ainsley Earhardt declared that it would make sense for Trump to demand that all charges against him be dropped if Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) doesn’t send the articles of impeachment to the Senate for a trial:
“When a prosecutor brings a case against someone and then refuses to try it, can’t that person constitutionally dismiss the charges?”
“There is no prosecutor and no case being brought.”
The clueless Fox host then asked:
“But isn’t it the same thing?”
No, it isn’t, Napolitano noted, and impeachment is a political process, not a legal one, so the normal rules don’t apply.
Still befuddled, Earhardt again asked:
“So is that a no?”
Clearly growing impatient with Earhardt’s lack of understanding, the Fox legal expert told her:
“I can’t answer it yes-or-no! Ms. Pelosi is trying to influence the rules of the Senate by refusing to surrender the articles of impeachment until the senators agree to live testimony.”
Napolitano went on to explain that Pelosi and House Democrats gained an important ally on Monday when former national security adviser John Bolton announced he would testify in the Senate impeachment trial if he’s subpoenaed. However, several Senate Republicans have blanched at the idea, with Marco Rubio of Florida telling CNN reporter Manu Raju:
“I think in my view our inquiry should be based on the testimony that they took, we are acting on articles of impeachment. We should be constrained by the information that those articles are based on.”
But that’s not what the Founding Fathers had in mind, and Rubio knows it. By definition, a “trial” includes witness testimony and documentary evidence. Unless, of course, you’re trying to make sure the accused is innocent before the trial ever begins.
Ainsley Earhardt on impeachment: “When a prosecutor brings a case against someone and then refuses to try it, can’t that person constitutionally dismiss the charges?”
Andrew Napolitano: “There’s no prosecutor and no case being brought.”
Ainsley: “But isn’t it the same thing?” pic.twitter.com/g9sK6RGM4D
— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) January 7, 2020
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