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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "Trump, Donald J" (Page 69)

For John Bolton, an ‘Upside-Down World’ After Trump Revelation

Westlake Legal Group 28dc-bolton-1-facebookJumbo For John Bolton, an ‘Upside-Down World’ After Trump Revelation United States Politics and Government Ukraine Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate impeachment Bolton, John R

WASHINGTON — Not long ago, they called him “too extreme,” “aggressively and dangerously wrong” and “downright dangerous.” They called him “nutty,” “reckless” and “far outside the mainstream.”

Now they would like to call him their star witness.

Suddenly, John R. Bolton, the conservative war hawk and favorite villain of the left, is the toast of Senate Democrats, the last, best hope to prove their abuse-of-power case against President Trump. Democrats who once excoriated him are trumpeting his credibility as they seek his testimony in Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial.

On the other side of the aisle, some of Mr. Bolton’s longtime Republican friends are just as abruptly tossing him to the curb, painting him as a disgruntled former adviser who just wants to sell books. Some of the same senators who allied with him, promoted his career, consulted with him on foreign affairs and took his political action committee money are going along as he is painted as “a tool for the radical Dems and the deep state,” as he was termed on one of the Fox News channels, part of the network where he worked for 11 years.

“It’s a totally upside-down world,” said Senator Chris Van Hollen, a Democrat from Maryland who two years ago denounced Mr. Bolton’s “history of warmongering” when he was appointed Mr. Trump’s national security adviser. “But what we should all agree on is we want to get to the truth of the matter about the impeachment charges and we should accept his testimony under penalty of perjury.”

There is, in fact, no agreement on that as Senate Republicans try to wrap up the trial without calling Mr. Bolton or any other witnesses in a vote likely to be held on Friday. Many Republicans argue that nothing has changed despite Mr. Bolton’s account that Mr. Trump wanted to hold up American security aid to Ukraine until it investigated his domestic political rivals — an assertion that directly contradicts the president.

This is one of those moments that capture Mr. Trump’s Washington, where ideology, philosophy, party and policy mean less than where you stand on Mr. Trump — for or against him. Mr. Bolton is actually more conservative and more consistent than Mr. Trump, but since his story appears to threaten the president, he has been promptly be embraced by one camp and exorcised by the other.

Among those who understand what that feels like are other refugees from the Trump White House, who despite devoting what they described as endless hours trying to making his presidency a success are now branded apostates for speaking out. Among them are John F. Kelly, the former secretary of homeland security and White House chief of staff.

Mr. Kelly was one of the few prominent conservatives to jump to Mr. Bolton’s defense since news of his account, included in an unpublished book submitted to the White House for review, broke in The New York Times on Sunday.

“If John Bolton says that in the book, I believe John Bolton,” Mr. Kelly said during a lecture in Sarasota, Fla., according to a report in The Herald-Tribune.

Mr. Kelly did not always get along with Mr. Bolton. At one point, they had a profanity-laced shouting match, after which Mr. Kelly left the White House for the rest of the day. But Mr. Kelly said Mr. Bolton “always gave the president the unvarnished truth,” adding: “John’s an honest guy. He’s a man of integrity and great character, so we’ll see what happens.”

That it has come to this surprises no one who actually knows Mr. Bolton. An iconoclastic believer in a forceful approach to the world, he disdains what he views as weak-kneed conventional diplomacy, international organizations that intrude on American sovereignty and free-rider allies. When he is on someone’s side, there is no more relentless ally. When he is not, there is no more implacable foe.

Loyalty to party or president takes a back seat to principle as he defines it. While President George W. Bush gave him high-ranking positions, including a recess appointment as ambassador to the United Nations, Mr. Bolton did not hold back criticizing his former boss after leaving the administration for going soft on North Korea and Iran. He wrote a bracingly candid memoir that named names and spared no one. Simply reading that would have made clear to Mr. Trump or his aides what might happen when he left this White House.

And so it has. Just months after leaving Mr. Trump’s White House amid tension over policy toward Iran, North Korea, Afghanistan and Ukraine, Mr. Bolton has written “The Room Where It Happened,” to be published in March, in which he reports that the president explicitly told him that he did not want to release $391 million in aid to Ukraine until it announced investigations into his Democratic rivals, including former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.

That account threw the Senate trial into temporary disarray since it directly contradicted Mr. Trump’s defense. The president denied Mr. Bolton’s account, and his personal attorney Rudolph W. Giuliani called him a “back-stabber.” On the Fox Business channel, Lou Dobbs assailed Mr. Bolton for using the same literary agents as James B. Comey, the F.B.I. director fired by Mr. Trump — prompting one of the literary agents to point out that one of their other clients was Mr. Dobbs.

While Mr. Bolton has left plenty of bruises over the years and he was accused of politicizing intelligence before the Iraq war, an accusation he denied, many former colleagues said he was forthcoming to a fault.

“Ambassador Bolton was known for being frank and candid — in fact, some complained that his frankness and candor got in the way of a more indirect, diplomatic approach,” said Peter D. Feaver, a national security aide in Mr. Bush’s White House. “I do not recall ever hearing people complain that he made up stuff.”

Democrats at this point are happy to vouch for his honesty. “I think Bolton has a lot of credibility,” Senator Thomas R. Carper of Delaware, who once called him “too extreme,” said on Fox News this week. “Not just among the Republicans but our side as well.”

On the other hand, Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, said Mr. Bolton was not to be believed. “I would say that he’s a witness very interested in making a lot of money right now,” Mr. Paul said on CNN. “A month ago, he was against testifying. Now that his book is complete and available for $29.95, he’s all for testifying. So I think we need to take with a grain of salt his testimony if he comes in.”

More painful for Mr. Bolton may be closer friends who have distanced themselves. Senator James M. Inhofe, Republican of Oklahoma, who called Mr. Bolton “one of my closest friends” a few weeks ago, suggested that his close friend had a grudge. “He was fired by the president,” Mr. Inhofe told reporters, although Mr. Bolton insists he resigned. “That can have an effect on a person.”

Fred Fleitz, another longtime friend who served as Mr. Bolton’s chief of staff twice, most recently in the Trump White House, even wrote an op-ed for Fox News criticizing his former boss for publishing a book about the president before the election.

“Presidents have to be able to consult and confide in their national security adviser without worrying about those discussions being published,” Mr. Fleitz said in an interview on Tuesday. He added that “he’s a straight shooter, he’s an honest man, he’s an honorable man.”

Mr. Bolton has often been misunderstood or mischaracterized. His critics call him a neoconservative, but in fact he cares little for the democracy promotion that drives actual neoconservatives. Instead, he is a hard-core “Americanist,” as he puts it, favoring tough policies up to and including the use of force to defend American interests. He supported the invasion of Iraq, he has said, not to create a Jeffersonian republic in Baghdad but to eliminate what he saw as a security threat to the United States.

He has consistently advocated regime change or military action to resolve conflicts with states like Iran and North Korea and spent much of his tenure as national security adviser trying to keep Mr. Trump from entering what Mr. Bolton considered unwise agreements with enemies.

He struggled over whether to testify in the impeachment hearings even as he wrote his latest book. He finally offered to appear if the Senate subpoenaed him, knowing that he would be harshly criticized if he refused to testify and his account of the Ukraine matter only became public in the book after the trial.

But while colleagues said he was disturbed by the president’s actions on Ukraine — and he has openly criticized the president’s Iran and North Korea policies since leaving the White House — that does not mean that Mr. Bolton has joined the ranks of the Never Trump Republicans.

Friends say he still wants a future in Republican politics, having reconstituted his political action committee shortly after leaving the White House. But they say he understands that donors would be reluctant to contribute if he was perceived as an accuser of Mr. Trump. He also remains as contemptuous of Democrats as ever and has not explicitly expressed support for impeachment or conviction.

“I think the Democrats should be careful in what they wish for if they do get him as a witness,” Mr. Fleitz said. “I don’t know that he would say what they hope he would say.”

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Bolton Book Puts New Focus on Trump’s Actions in Turkey and China Cases

Westlake Legal Group merlin_166171011_07f9240c-40ea-4835-a031-e972f1f1d8dc-facebookJumbo Bolton Book Puts New Focus on Trump’s Actions in Turkey and China Cases ZTE Corp Xi Jinping United States Politics and Government United States International Relations Turkey Trump, Donald J Treasury Department Ross, Wilbur L Jr Presidential Election of 2020 Politics and Government Mnuchin, Steven T Halkbank Erdogan, Recep Tayyip Embargoes and Sanctions China Bolton, John R Barr, William P

WASHINGTON — It was late 2018, and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey was on the phone with an unusual request for President Trump: Could he intervene with top members of his cabinet to curb or even shut down a criminal investigation into Halkbank, one of Turkey’s largest state-owned banks?

It was not Mr. Erdogan’s only effort to persuade the Trump administration to back off the investigation into the bank, which had been accused of violating United States sanctions against Iran.

His government had hired a lobbying firm run by a friend of and fund-raiser for Mr. Trump to press his case with the White House and State Department. And there would be more phone calls between the two leaders in which the topic came up, according to participants in the lobbying.

Mr. Erdogan’s influence campaign is now under scrutiny again in Washington, following the disclosure that Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser, John R. Bolton, reported in his forthcoming book his concern that the president was effectively granting personal favors to Mr. Erdogan and President Xi Jinping of China.

People familiar with the unpublished manuscript said Mr. Bolton wrote that he had shared his concern with Attorney General William P. Barr and that Mr. Barr responded by pointing to Mr. Trump’s intervention in two cases linked to Turkey and China: the investigation of Halkbank and Mr. Trump’s decision in 2018 to lift sanctions on ZTE, a major Chinese telecommunications company.

The Justice Department has disputed Mr. Bolton’s account. But on Tuesday, top Democrats seized on the suggestions of meddling in the Halkbank and ZTE cases as fresh evidence that Mr. Trump, whose family enterprise has extensive business ties to Turkey and also has considered building new towers in China and expanding in other areas, was using the presidency to enrich himself and his family.

“Several members of the administration had concerns about the president’s dealings with autocrats,” Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic minority leader, said at a news conference. “Did the president have financial interests at stake when he was talking to Erdogan or Xi and others?”

He added: “Maybe his kids had some economic interest at stake. And did it impact our nation’s foreign policy with those countries?”

Former foreign policy officials — including some who served in Republican administrations — said in interviews that Mr. Trump plays an unusual and at times disturbing role in high-profile criminal and sanction cases involving foreign governments.

“What I know about his intervention in the Halkbank case is highly abnormal and quite worrying, actually,” said Philip Zelikow, a history professor at the University of Virginia who served on the National Security Council staff for President George Bush.

Suggesting that Mr. Trump was putting private, commercial interests above those of the United States, Mr. Zelikow added: “There have been interventions on behalf of a foreign government that are hard to explain in traditional public interest terms.”

Mr. Trump’s involvement in the Halkbank investigation started early in his administration. In 2017, he was asked by Rudolph W. Giuliani during an Oval Office meeting with Rex W. Tillerson, then the secretary of state, to help secure the release of a Turkish gold trader at the center of Halkbank’s sanctions-evasion efforts.

The gold trader, Reza Zarrab, who had hired Mr. Giuliani to help secure his release, had been accused by federal prosecutors of playing a central role in an effort by Halkbank to funnel more than $10 billion in gold and cash to Iran, in defiance of United States sanctions designed to curb Iran’s nuclear program.

Turkey also wanted the trader released, former Turkish government officials said, so that he would not testify against top bank officials or implicate members of Mr. Erdogan’s family or Mr. Erdogan himself.

The push failed to secure Mr. Zarrab’s release and was abandoned after he agreed to testify on behalf of the Justice Department to help obtain the conviction of a Halkbank executive in early 2018.

But that was just the start of the lobbying.

Mr. Erdogan, in a series of phone calls and in-person conversations in 2018 and 2019, repeatedly tried to persuade Mr. Trump to use his power to limit additional enforcement action against Halkbank itself, something the Justice Department had made clear it was considering.

After one phone conversation in late 2018, Mr. Erdogan told reporters in Turkey that Mr. Trump had told him that “he would instruct the relevant ministers immediately” to follow through on the matter.

“Talks are underway about this issue,” Mr. Erdogan said at the time. “It is very important that this process has begun.”

Mr. Erdogan’s son-in-law, who serves as Turkey’s finance minister, also took up the case, pressing Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on the matter. Other appeals were made by the former project manager of Trump Towers Istanbul, a twin-tower complex and mall that was the Trump family’s first high-rise project in Europe.

Asked about Turkey’s lobbying efforts in an interview in October, Mr. Mnuchin cited the ongoing legal process and would not comment.

The bank had separately hired a lobbying firm run by Brian D. Ballard, a top fund-raiser for Mr. Trump’s campaign and the Republican National Committee. The lobbyists from Mr. Ballard’s team argued to the State Department and White House that any criminal charges against the state-owed bank could destabilize the Turkish economy.

For months, it looked like Turkey was going to succeed in this unusual lobbying campaign — asking a United States president to put pressure on his own Justice Department to protect a state-owned bank. Mr. Barr, who was confirmed in February 2019, played a key role in overseeing the negotiations over a possible settlement with the bank that would have seen it avoid criminal charges, representatives for Halkbank said in interviews last year.

Only after Turkey invaded Syria in early October did the Justice Department move to indict the bank.

“President Trump has been carrying water for President Erdogan and Turkey’s state-owned Halkbank,” said Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon, the top Democrat on the finance committee. “Every member of Congress should be profoundly alarmed that Donald Trump is trying to get the bank accused of the largest Iranian sanctions violation scheme in U.S. history off the hook because his authoritarian pal asked for a favor.”

Mr. Trump’s 2018 intervention in the case of ZTE was equally perplexing to some observers. Two years before, the United States found the Chinese company guilty of violating American sanctions on Iran and North Korea. In April 2018, the Trump administration moved to punish ZTE by banning it from buying American technology.

But Mr. Trump suddenly had a change of heart, essentially pardoning the company in exchange for a $1 billion fine and promises to replace its senior leadership and allow American compliance monitors.

The decision came after a direct plea to Mr. Trump from Mr. Xi in the midst of intense maneuvering over trade talks between the two countries and as the United States was preparing for a summit with North Korea.

It drew bipartisan backlash on Capitol Hill. Top lawmakers, including Senators Marco Rubio of Florida, Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, had urged the administration not to bend on ZTE, which they considered a law enforcement and national security issue.

Chinese officials had made it clear that they considered lifting ZTE’s penalty a condition for reaching a trade deal. There was also the implicit threat that, if the penalty was not lifted, American companies operating in China would face further retaliation. The United States has also relied on China to exert pressure on North Korea to dismantle its nuclear program.

The Trump family had for years worked on plans to build a series of new hotel or apartment building projects in China, goals put on hold after Mr. Trump was elected president.

His administration scrambled to quiet the growing dissent, and Mr. Trump lashed out at Democrats for having allowed ZTE to flourish under President Barack Obama’s watch.

In May 2018, Wilbur L. Ross Jr., the commerce secretary, and Mr. Mnuchin traveled to Capitol Hill to brief a group of Senate Republicans, including Mr. Rubio, John Cornyn of Texas and Bob Corker of Tennessee, on their plans for ZTE. Mr. Ross and Mr. Mnuchin sought to assure the lawmakers that they were planning on harsh penalties for ZTE and appealed to Republicans to dampen their public criticism so a deal could be reached, a person briefed on the discussions said.

Chinese officials widely speculated that the penalties on ZTE were an effort by the Trump administration to gain the upper hand in the trade talks. But people briefed on the discussions say Trump administration officials had not fully realized what a complication the measure would become in the trade talks.

Since then, ZTE has made a gradual recovery, and its profits have rebounded. And although its run-in with the Trump administration tarnished its smartphone brand with consumers, cellphone carriers around the world have still been willing to work with the company to build 5G mobile networks.

The handling of ZTE has raised questions about whether Mr. Trump will follow through with imposing restrictions on Huawei, another Chinese telecommunications company that the White House views as a national security threat.

Elizabeth Rosenberg, who served as a senior Treasury adviser working on sanctions issues during the Obama administration and who now studies sanctions policy at the Center for a New American Security, said Mr. Trump’s interventions were unusual and disruptive.

“This is not the norm in Washington,” she said. “He is making up sanctions policy on his own, and influencing the course of policy in a way that undermines United States priorities and has shocked United States allies.”

Ana Swanson contributed reporting from Washington, Raymond Zhong from Shanghai and Michael Forsythe from New York.

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Trump’s Defense Team Discounts Bolton as Republicans Work to Hold Off Witnesses

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s defense team appealed to the Senate on Tuesday to disregard a new account by John R. Bolton that bolsters the impeachment case against the president. But by day’s end, Republican leaders indicated that they had not corralled the votes they sought to prevent his former national security adviser or other witnesses from coming forward.

On the final day of arguments on Mr. Trump’s behalf, Jay Sekulow, one of the president’s private lawyers, sought to raise doubts about Mr. Bolton’s claim in an unpublished manuscript that Mr. Trump tied the release of military aid to Ukraine to investigations into his political rivals, calling it an “unsourced allegation” that was “inadmissible” in his impeachment trial.

Just after Mr. Trump’s team ended a three-day legal defense, Republican senators rushed into a private meeting room in the Capitol, where Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the majority leader, worked to herd his rank and file in line behind ending the trial. He brandished a card that bore a tally of Republican votes on the question, and warned that he did not yet have enough to block an expected Democratic move to call witnesses because some Republicans remained uncommitted, according to people familiar with the meeting not authorized to discuss it publicly.

“It was a serious family discussion,” Senator Kevin Cramer, Republican of North Dakota, told reporters as he emerged from the senators-only meeting in the Strom Thurmond Room. “Some people are sincerely exploring all the avenues.”

The talks unfolded after Mr. Trump’s team essentially rested their case against removing him from office, ending its oral arguments by urging senators to ignore what Mr. Bolton might have to say. Without directly denying the veracity of his account, whose existence was first reported by The New York Times, Mr. Sekulow argued that the behavior Mr. Bolton described was not had no place in the discussion of the president’s fate.

Impeachment “is not a game of leaks and unsourced manuscripts,” Mr. Sekulow said. “That is politics, unfortunately. Hamilton put impeachment in the hands of this body, the Senate, precisely and specifically, to be above that fray.”

ImageWestlake Legal Group merlin_168000216_2a2594f7-125f-4118-b27a-3ba00831a7e6-articleLarge Trump’s Defense Team Discounts Bolton as Republicans Work to Hold Off Witnesses United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate Schiff, Adam B Republican Party Presidential Election of 2020 McConnell, Mitch impeachment House of Representatives Democratic Party Cipollone, Pat A Bolton, John R

Senator Mitch McConnell said he does not have the votes to block Democrats to call for  witnesses during the impeachment trial.Credit…Erin Schaff/The New York Times

The argument was a bid to quiet the anger and anxiety that Mr. Bolton’s revelation prompted in Republican ranks when it emerged at a critical stage in Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial. Conservatives said the case for moving directly to acquittal without new testimony or documents was overwhelming, but key moderates, including Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, said they were still undecided. Earlier, another moderate, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, indicated that “Mr. Bolton probably has some things that would be helpful for us.”

Two other Republicans, Senators Mitt Romney of Utah and Susan Collins of Maine, have said they would vote for witnesses, but Democrats would need four Republicans to join them in order to prevail.

Inside the private meeting on Tuesday, Mr. McConnell warned that allowing witnesses would blow the trial wide open and potentially prolong it by weeks. Clutching his whip count of yeses, noes and maybes, Mr. McConnell appeared to be suggesting that undecided senators needed to make up their minds and get in line with the majority of their colleagues.

The activity inside and outside the Senate chamber underscored just how thoroughly Mr. Bolton’s account has upended the trial, injecting an element of unpredictability into a proceeding that appeared headed for Mr. Trump’s acquittal by week’s end.

The longtime Republican foreign policy figure has made clear he would testify if called, but senators also know that regardless of his account, it is a virtual impossibility that the Republican-controlled chamber would vote to convict Mr. Trump and remove him from office less than 10 months before a presidential election. A 67-vote supermajority would be needed to do so.

How they proceed could have significant political ramifications not just for Mr. Trump, whose very defenses could be further undermined, but for Republican senators up for re-election in swing states this fall who want to show voters they conducted a fair tribunal.

Democrats pounced on Mr. Sekulow’s remarks about Mr. Bolton, saying that his reference to “unsourced allegations” proved their point that the Senate must subpoena Mr. Bolton to testify in the trial to clarify his precise account.

“Once again, the president’s team, in a way that only they could, have further made the case for calling John Bolton,” Representative Adam B. Schiff of California, the lead House manager, told reporters during a break in the proceedings.

Proponents of calling Mr. Bolton got an unexpected bit of support late Monday from John F. Kelly, the former White House chief of staff, who told an audience in Florida that he believed Mr. Bolton’s account and supported the Senate seeking direct witnesses.

“I think some of the conversations seem to me to be very inappropriate, but I wasn’t there,” he said, according to The Sarasota Herald-Tribune. “But there are people that were there that ought to be heard from.”

Republican leaders appeared to be slowing down what had been a breakneck trial schedule to allow for fuller consideration of the matter. They were hopeful that by putting distance between the emergence of Mr. Bolton’s account and the vote on witnesses, tensions would cool enough to hold a majority intact to reject Democrats’ demands for witnesses.

Beginning Wednesday, senators will have up to 16 hours spread over two days to question the prosecution and the defense teams. Much of that time will most likely be used to allow the two sides to respond to one another’s arguments, but Democrats and Republicans were also preparing pointed questions intended to highlight soft spots in the respective cases.

At the White House, Mr. Trump was uncharacteristically quiet about the impeachment proceedings, which he has followed on television in recent days. He sought instead to put his policy agenda on full display, unveiling a long awaited Middle East peace plan that bolstered arguments by his lawyers that the president was a boon, not a threat, to American interests.

Mr. Trump framed the matter even more directly on Twitter.

“Are you better off now than you were three years ago?” he wrote. “Almost everyone say YES!”

Inside the Senate chamber, Mr. Sekulow and two White House lawyers delivered a voluble and indignant final defense, capping three days of oral arguments on the president’s behalf against the House’s abuse of power and obstruction of Congress charges.

Punctuating his remarks with a refrain of “danger, danger, danger,” Mr. Sekulow insisted that the managers’ case was built solely on a dressed up policy dispute with the president over his push to combat corruption there.

“If that becomes the new normal, future presidents, Democrats and Republicans will be paralyzed the moment they are elected, even before they can take the oath of office,” Mr. Sekulow said. “The bar for impeachment cannot be set this low.”

Despite his warnings, Mr. Sekulow did not directly deny the former national security adviser’s account, instead reading aloud from statements by Mr. Trump, the Justice Department and the vice president’s office contesting Mr. Bolton’s specific recollections.

Democrats spent three days last week arguing just the opposite. They said that the House’s two-month investigation concluded that Mr. Trump had used the powers of his office not in the pursuit of a policy objective but a political advantage. When he was caught, they argued, he sought to conceal what he had done by ordering an across the board defiance of their investigation.

Clocking in at under an hour and a half, the bare-bones closing argument from Mr. Trump’s lawyers underscored their confidence in the final outcome. In the end, they used less than half of the 24 hours available to them to present a case to senators.

Pat A. Cipollone, the White House counsel, capped the presentation by playing a highlight reel of House and Senate Democrats arguing against a partisan impeachment in 1998, including Representative Jerrold Nadler of New York, one of the House managers, and Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader.

“You were right,” Mr. Cipollone said, looking directly at Mr. Schumer.

“All you need in this case are the Constitution and your common sense,” Mr. Cipollone sad. “The articles of impeachment fall far short of any constitutional standard, and they are dangerous.”

Reporting was contributed by Carl Hulse, Sheryl Gay Stolberg, Emily Cochrane and Catie Edmondson.

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Israeli Cabinet Will Vote to Apply Sovereignty to Part of West Bank

Westlake Legal Group 28Israel-analysis9-facebookJumbo Israeli Cabinet Will Vote to Apply Sovereignty to Part of West Bank West Bank Trump, Donald J Palestinians Netanyahu, Benjamin Jordan Jerusalem (Israel) Israel Defense and Military Forces

JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would move Sunday to apply Israeli sovereignty to the strategically vital Jordan Valley and to all Jewish settlements on the West Bank.

The move, which was blessed by President Trump and administration officials on Tuesday, is tantamount to annexation.

It could apply to up to 30 percent of the West Bank, occupied territory that Israel seized from Jordan in the 1967 war that Palestinians wanted for their future state.

Mr. Netanyahu told Israeli reporters in Washington that his cabinet would vote on the measure on Sunday. The decision could still be subject to legal challenges because the current cabinet is an interim government.

The green light from the White House outraged Israeli supporters of a more generous accommodation with the Palestinians and alarmed those who have warned that any annexation could set off a dangerous chain reaction leading to renewed violence.

“It’s worse than any of us could anticipate,” said Nimrod Novik, a longtime Israeli peace negotiator and former aide to Shimon Peres.

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Israeli Cabinet Will Vote to Apply Sovereignty to Part of West Bank

Westlake Legal Group 28Israel-analysis9-facebookJumbo Israeli Cabinet Will Vote to Apply Sovereignty to Part of West Bank West Bank Trump, Donald J Palestinians Netanyahu, Benjamin Jordan Jerusalem (Israel) Israel Defense and Military Forces

JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would move Sunday to apply Israeli sovereignty to the strategically vital Jordan Valley and to all Jewish settlements on the West Bank.

The move, which was blessed by President Trump and administration officials on Tuesday, is tantamount to annexation.

It could apply to up to 30 percent of the West Bank, occupied territory that Israel seized from Jordan in the 1967 war that Palestinians wanted for their future state.

Mr. Netanyahu told Israeli reporters in Washington that his cabinet would vote on the measure on Sunday. The decision could still be subject to legal challenges because the current cabinet is an interim government.

The green light from the White House outraged Israeli supporters of a more generous accommodation with the Palestinians and alarmed those who have warned that any annexation could set off a dangerous chain reaction leading to renewed violence.

“It’s worse than any of us could anticipate,” said Nimrod Novik, a longtime Israeli peace negotiator and former aide to Shimon Peres.

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Trump Outlines Mideast Peace Plan That Strongly Favors Israel

Westlake Legal Group 28dc-prexy-sub2-facebookJumbo Trump Outlines Mideast Peace Plan That Strongly Favors Israel Trump, Donald J Palestinians Kushner, Jared Jerusalem (Israel) Israeli Settlements Israel impeachment

WASHINGTON — President Trump unveiled his long-awaited Middle East peace plan with a flourish on Monday, outlining a proposal that would give Israel most of what it has sought over decades of conflict while creating what he called a Palestinian state with limited sovereignty.

Mr. Trump’s plan would guarantee that Israel would control a unified Jerusalem as its capital and not require it to uproot any of the settlements in the West Bank that have provoked Palestinian outrage and alienated much of the outside world. He promised to provide $50 billion in international financing to build the new Palestinian entity and open an embassy in its new state.

“My vision presents a win-win opportunity for both sides, a realistic two-state solution that resolves the risk of Palestinian statehood into security,” the president said at a White House ceremony that demonstrated the one-sided state of affairs as he was flanked by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel but no counterpart from the Palestinian leadership, which is not on speaking terms with the Trump administration.

Mr. Trump insisted his plan would be good for the Palestinians and in his speech reached out to President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority. “President Abbas,” he said, “I want you to know if you choose the path to peace, America and many other countries, we will be there, we will be there to help you in so many different ways.”

The event in the East Room of the White House had a Kabuki-theater quality to it as the president ended years of suspense over a highly-touted peace plan that was widely considered dead on arrival. Rather than a serious blueprint for peace, analysts called it a political document by a president in the middle of an impeachment trial working in tandem with a prime minister under criminal indictment and facing his third election in a year in barely over a month.

Nearly three years in the making and overseen by Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, the plan is the latest of numerous American efforts to settle the seventy-plus year conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. But it marks a sharp turn in the American approach, dropping decades of American support for only modest adjustments to Israeli borders drawn in a 1967 armistice and discarding the longtime goal of granting the Palestinians a full-fledged state.

The proposal imagines new Israeli borders that cut far into the West Bank, and, at least in the short term, calls for what Mr. Netanyahu has described as a Palestinian “state-minus,” lacking an army or air force.

Mr. Trump said it was the first time that Israel had authorized the release of such a conceptual map illustrating territorial compromises it would make. He said it would “more than double Palestinian territory” while ensuring that “no Palestinians or Israelis will be uprooted from their homes.”

Mr. Netanyahu called it ”a realistic path to a durable peace” that “strikes the right balance where others have failed.” Calling Mr. Trump the best friend Israel has ever had in the White House, Mr. Netanyahu added: “It’s a great plan for Israel. It’s a great plan for peace.”

Early in his presidency, Mr. Trump suggested that a peace deal would be “frankly, maybe not as difficult as people have thought over the years.”

By asking the Palestinians to make far more territorial concessions than past proposals, it provides an American imprimatur of support to decades of aggressive Israeli settlement building in Palestinian areas seized in two wars between Israel and Arab states. And it sends a grim message to the Palestinians that they have missed their chance to win the “two state solution” they long pursued — as least so long as Mr. Trump is president.

Mr. Kushner and a small circle of Trump officials chose not to pursue the traditional path of brokering talks between the two parties that could lead to a joint proposal, but to hand one down from Washington. Peace-process veterans say that last happened under President Ronald Reagan in 1982.

Working secretively, Mr. Kushner and his team — which included the American ambassador to Israel, David M. Friedman, a strong supporter of Israeli settlement construction — consulted closely with Mr. Netanyahu’s government. But their contact with Palestinian officials ended after Mr. Trump moved the United States embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv in December 2017.

Rather than court the Palestinians after that, the Trump administration only increased pressure on them, cutting off American funding for Palestinian areas and shuttering the Palestinian diplomatic office in Washington.

That dashed the initial hopes of Palestinians who believed that Mr. Trump’s unorthodox approach toward foreign policy, and his love for a grand deal, could lead him to pressure Israel to a degree they felt previous American presidents had not.

In the near term, the 80-page plan is most likely to stir up Israeli and American politics. Mr. Trump is sure to cite the plan’s pro-Israel slant on the 2020 campaign trail to win support from conservative Jewish Americans in Florida and other key states, along with the Evangelical Christians who are some of his strongest backers and support Israeli expansion in the Holy Land.

While the Palestinians are nearly certain to reject the plan, Trump allies say they will be closely watching other Arab governments with whom Mr. Trump has established close relations and who have thawed relations with Israel, to see whether they might give the plan any political cover.

Speaking in Tel Aviv on Monday, Nikki Haley, Mr. Trump’s former United Nations Ambassador, suggested that such Arab support could force the Palestinians to come to the table. “If the Arab countries respond favorably to the plan, or even if they don’t run to the Palestinian side, that’s going to be a huge, telling lesson to the Palestinians that they may not have the backing they had before,” she said.

Michael Crowley and Peter Baker reported from Washington, and David M. Halbfinger reported from Jerusalem.

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Britain Defies Trump Plea to Ban Huawei From 5G Network

Westlake Legal Group 00ukhuawei-02-facebookJumbo-v2 Britain Defies Trump Plea to Ban Huawei From 5G Network United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Telephones and Telecommunications Huawei Technologies Co Ltd Great Britain Defense and Military Forces Computers and the Internet Blacklisting 5G (Wireless Communications)

LONDON — Britain said on Tuesday that it would not ban equipment made by the Chinese technology giant Huawei from being used in its new high-speed 5G wireless network, the starkest sign yet that an American campaign against the telecommunications company is faltering.

Despite more than a year of intense lobbying by the Trump administration, which has accused Huawei of having ties to China’s Communist Party that pose a national security threat, the British government announced it would allow the company to provide equipment in some portions of a next-generation network to be built in the coming years.

The British decision was crucial in a broader fight for tech supremacy between the United States and China. Britain, a key American ally, is the most important country so far to reject White House warnings that Huawei is an instrument of Beijing. Britain’s membership in the “five eyes” intelligence-sharing group of countries, which also includes Canada, Australia and New Zealand, gave the outcome an added significance.

Many countries have been caught between the United States and China in their tech cold war. American officials have threatened to withhold intelligence if countries do not ban Huawei, while Chinese representatives have warned of economic retaliation if they do.

“This is a U.K.-specific solution for U.K.-specific reasons and the decision deals with the challenges we face right now,” said Nicky Morgan, the secretary for digital, culture, media and sport, the government agency that oversaw the decision.

“It not only paves the way for secure and resilient networks, with our sovereignty over data protected, but it also builds on our strategy to develop a diversity of suppliers,” she said.

The rules were announced on Tuesday after Prime Minister Boris Johnson met with his National Security Council. The decision did not mention Huawei by name, instead referring more broadly to “high-risk vendors” that “pose greater security and resilience risks to U.K. telecoms networks.” Such vendors will be limited to certain parts of the wireless infrastructure, such as antennas and base stations, that are not seen as posing a threat to the integrity of the system.

No single high-risk vendor will be allowed to exceed a 35 percent market share of the network, the rules said, an effort to encourage new competition that could benefit companies including Nokia and Ericsson.

A Trump administration official said the United States was “disappointed” by Mr. Johnson’s decision.

“We look forward to working with the U.K. on a way forward that results in the exclusion of untrusted vendor components from 5G networks,” the official said. “We continue to urge all countries to carefully assess the long-term national security and economic impacts of allowing untrusted vendors access to important 5G network infrastructure.”

Huawei has long denied that it is beholden to the Chinese government.

“Huawei is reassured by the U.K. government’s confirmation that we can continue working with our customers to keep the 5G rollout on track,” Victor Zhang, Huawei’s vice president, said in a statement. “This evidence-based decision will result in a more advanced, more secure and more cost-effective telecoms infrastructure that is fit for the future.”

The crown jewel of China’s tech sector, Huawei is the largest provider of equipment to build systems based on fifth-generation wireless technology, known as 5G. That technology is seen as essential infrastructure in an increasingly digitized global economy. The networks will provide dramatically faster download speeds, as well as new commercial applications in industries such as transportation, manufacturing and health care.

Huawei’s prominence has made it a target of the United States. Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer and the daughter of the company’s founder, is fighting an extradition order in Canada stemming from an American indictment on fraud charges.

The Trump administration’s global effort against Huawei has had some success. In 2018, Australia imposed a ban on Huawei gear, and Japan put restrictions on purchasing Huawei equipment for government use.

But in Europe, the White House has had more trouble. While the European Union has warned of national security risks related to 5G, it has not called out China or Huawei by name or recommended an outright ban. In France, the government said it didn’t believe a ban was necessary. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has shared similar views, though a final decision has not been made and some in the government are calling for a harder line.

Perhaps no country was lobbied by the United States and China as hard as Britain, delaying the country’s decision-making about building its new 5G network. President Trump, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin have all warned Britain in recent weeks. Earlier this month, an American delegation visited London to make a last-minute case against Huawei. Mr. Pompeo is scheduled to visit Britain this week.

Huawei first began working in Britain more than 15 years ago and now employs 1,600 people in the country, helping it gain acceptance and a foothold to expand to other parts of Europe. Combined with the Middle East and Africa, Europe is now Huawei’s largest market outside of China.

Steve Tsang, director of the China Institute at SOAS University of London, said the British announcement is “a big deal” that gives Huawei “a level of credibility that it craves.”

British officials have said the risk Huawei presents can be managed through oversight and by limiting its access to more critical areas of the network that handle sensitive data. Huawei would be limited to providing antennas and other equipment that send data directly to consumer devices, and kept out of areas considered the nerve center of the network, such as servers that route traffic within the system.

Britain has always kept Huawei out of those parts of its telecommunications networks that handle sensitive data to limit the vulnerability to espionage or eavesdropping. In 2010, British officials set up a lab where Huawei’s equipment could be reviewed for security flaws. The lab has identified security vulnerabilities in the equipment, but officials have said the problems weren’t a result of interference from the Chinese government and could be managed.

“High risk vendors have never been — and never will be — in our most sensitive networks,” said Ciaran Martin, the chief executive of the National Cyber Security Center that oversees the lab.

American officials disagree that the risks can be contained since software plays a bigger role in 5G networks, with constantly-updating code making it harder to maintain complete oversight.

“Digital technology is being upgraded regularly and a level of risk with present-day technology that is manageable today may or may not be so four or five years down the line,” Mr. Tsang said.

The decision over whether to use Huawei equipment in Britain’s 5G network would usually be a technical one made by agencies that oversee cybersecurity and the nation’s digital infrastructure. But it became a political dilemma that spanned two administrations — first Theresa May when she was British prime minister, and now Boris Johnson.

British officials and executives at wireless companies have said the United States did not share smoking-gun evidence that would justify a ban of the Chinese company. American officials emphasized the vulnerabilities it could create within a national communications network in the event of a future confrontation with China.

Under the rules announced on Tuesday, high-risk firms would be excluded from providing technology at sensitive geographic locations, such as nuclear sites and military bases.

“There is definitely a potential security risk,” said Alan Woodward, a cybersecurity expert and visiting professor at the University of Surrey. “Is it manageable? That is the big question out there.”

Britain is in a precarious position as it negotiates an exit from the European Union. The country must forge new stand-alone trade deals in the aftermath. So while maintaining close ties to Washington is vital for Britain’s security and economy, it also needs to foster ties with China, which is a significant investor in the country and a growing buyer of British good“Post-Brexit Britain will increasingly have to rely on China even more than we already do,” said Anthony Glees, professor emeritus at the University of Buckingham, where he was head of the Centre for Security and Intelligence Studies.

Mr. Woodward said Huawei provides the best technology at the most affordable price for components essential for operating new networks. A ban, he said, would have left the country’s network overly dependent on Huawei’s biggest rivals — Ericsson and Nokia.

British telecommunications companies have warned that banning Huawei would be costly and cause delays because old equipment would have to be replaced.

David McCabe contributed reporting from Washington.

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Britain Says Huawei Won’t Be Banned From Its 5G Network

Westlake Legal Group 00ukhuawei-02-facebookJumbo Britain Says Huawei Won’t Be Banned From Its 5G Network United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Telephones and Telecommunications Huawei Technologies Co Ltd Great Britain Defense and Military Forces Computers and the Internet Blacklisting 5G (Wireless Communications)

LONDON — Britain said on Tuesday that it would not ban equipment made by the Chinese technology giant Huawei from being used in its new high-speed 5G wireless network, the starkest sign that an American campaign against the telecommunications company is faltering.

Despite more than a year of intense lobbying by the Trump administration, which has accused Huawei of having ties to China’s Communist Party that pose a national security threat, the British government announced it would allow the company to provide equipment in some portions of a next-generation network to be built in the coming years.

But by limiting Huawei gear to less-critical parts of the new network, Britain also gave the Trump administration a partial victory that would allow it to claim that its message about the Chinese company had gotten through.

The British decision was crucial in a broader fight for tech supremacy between the United States and China. Britain, a key American ally, is the most important country so far to reject White House warnings that Huawei is an instrument of Beijing. Britain’s membership in the “five eyes” intelligence-sharing group of countries, which also includes Canada, Australia and New Zealand, gave the outcome an added significance.

Many countries have been caught between the United States and China in their tech Cold War. American officials have threatened to withhold intelligence if countries do not ban Huawei, while Chinese representatives have warned of economic retaliation if they do.

This is a breaking story. Check back for updates.

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What to Watch For in Trump’s Impeachment Trial on Tuesday

Westlake Legal Group 28dc-whattowatch1-facebookJumbo What to Watch For in Trump’s Impeachment Trial on Tuesday United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate impeachment Bolton, John R

President Trump’s lawyers will complete their third and final day of oral arguments on Tuesday, wrapping up a defense that has sought to give Republican senators reasonable doubt and present them with alternative explanations for the president’s actions toward Ukraine.

Their assignment grew more difficult on Sunday after the revelation that John R. Bolton, the former White House national security adviser, wrote in an unpublished manuscript that Mr. Trump refused to release military aid for Ukraine until the country provided investigative information on his political rivals. That corroborates a central element of the abuse of power charge against Mr. Trump, which accuses him of using his position to pressure a foreign power to interfere on his behalf in the 2020 election.

Now, the question is whether the disclosure will move enough Republican senators to join Democrats in insisting on calling Mr. Bolton as a witness in the impeachment trial.

What we’re expecting to see: A summation of the president’s legal defense, including a strong argument against calling witnesses who would shed more light on Mr. Trump’s actions. His legal team will seek to drive home the argument that the House made a shoddy case, and the Senate need not reach in and bolster it by hearing new evidence.

When we’re likely to see it: The trial will convene at 1 p.m. and could stretch into the evening. Mr. Trump’s lawyers have used less than half of the 24 hours they were allotted, although they are not expected to take all of their time.

How to follow it: The New York Times’s congressional and White House teams will be following all the developments. Visit nytimes.com for coverage throughout the day.

News of Mr. Bolton’s forthcoming book landed like a bombshell in the middle of the impeachment trial, angering some Republicans who complained privately that they had been blindsided by the White House and snarling plans for a quick move to an acquittal of Mr. Trump as early as Friday.

Republican moderates like Senators Mitt Romney of Utah and Susan Collins of Maine are now more likely than ever to vote for witnesses, although it is not clear whether others like Lamar Alexander of Tennessee were moved by the disclosures. Still, on Monday several more conservative Republicans expressed a new openness to hear from witnesses, suggesting that Mr. Bolton’s account may have changed the game.

Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, cautioned his colleagues to remain calm and reserve judgment, but Republicans are already whispering among themselves about a potential negotiation over witnesses, and Democrats — who need only four Republicans to join them in voting to hear new evidence — are ratcheting up the pressure.

As Mr. Trump’s team wraps up its case and quiet discussions continue over whether to call witnesses, senators are turning their attention to their first opportunity to participate actively in the impeachment trial, during a 16-hour question-and-answer session.

Under the rules, the senators — who are sworn to silence during the impeachment trial — will submit written questions to the House impeachment managers and the president’s legal team through Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who is presiding over the trial. Chief Justice Roberts will read the questions aloud, alternating between Republicans and Democrats.

The questions are a chance for senators to gain a better understanding of the facts presented during the oral arguments, but they are also strategic opportunities for each side to focus on the aspects of the case most favorable to them. The process could begin as soon as Mr. Trump’s legal team completes its presentation.

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Framing the Impeachment Case: An Inside Look at Opposing Legal Teams

WASHINGTON — A former police chief, a prosecutor who won the conviction of an F.B.I. agent and one of Texas’ first Latina representatives. A constitutional law professor who once defended O.J. Simpson against a murder charge, a former special prosecutor who pursued the impeachment of President Bill Clinton and a litigator for the Christian right.

For the third time in American history, the Senate has convened as a court of impeachment to consider whether to remove a sitting president, and two teams of lawyers are facing off in a confrontation with heavy political and constitutional consequences.

The seven House Democratic impeachment managers, handpicked by Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California, have argued that President Trump abused his power by pressuring Ukraine to help smear his political rivals and obstructed Congress to conceal his actions. Mr. Trump’s defense team — drawn from the White House counsel’s office and outside lawyers, including a few who frequently appear on television — has argued that the president did nothing wrong and accused Democrats of using impeachment as a tool to remove an opponent they could not defeat at the ballot box.

Here is a look at the opposing legal teams and how they see impeachment, in their own words.  

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“No Constitution can protect us if right doesn’t matter anymore, and you know you can’t trust this president to do what’s right for this country. You can trust he will do what’s right for Donald Trump.”

Representative Adam B. Schiff — Democrat of California, the chairman of the Intelligence Committee and the lead impeachment manager

Westlake Legal Group 23dc-managerphotos-jumbo Framing the Impeachment Case: An Inside Look at Opposing Legal Teams United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Starr, Kenneth W Senate Sekulow, Jay Alan Schiff, Adam B Ray, Robert W Photography Nadler, Jerrold Lofgren, Zoe Johnson, Andrew Jeffries, Hakeem impeachment House of Representatives Herschmann, Eric D Garcia, Sylvia R. Dershowitz, Alan M Demings, Val Clinton, Bill Cipollone, Pat A  Credit…

“We need to hold him accountable because no one is above the law. Nadie está encima de la ley.”

Representative Sylvia R. Garcia — Democrat of Texas and one of the first two Latina women to represent the state

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“We are here, sir, to follow the facts, apply the law, be guided by the Constitution and present the truth to the American people. That is why we are here.”

Representative Hakeem Jeffries — Democrat of New York and the chairman of the Democratic caucus

In the prior two presidential impeachment trials, all 20 members of the House selected to prosecute the cases — seven for Andrew Johnson in 1868 and 13 for Bill Clinton in 1999 — were white men. But the group chosen by Ms. Pelosi includes two African-Americans, a Latina and three women.

Representative Adam B. Schiff of California, the lead impeachment manager, spoke for as long as the six other managers combined, according to C-SPAN. He spent hours building the House’s case by laying out the central themes and then delivering impassioned closing statements that drew grudging praise even from Republicans who disagreed — along with his share of criticism from those who said they were insulted by his sharp assertions.

Representatives Jerrold Nadler of New York and Zoe Lofgren of California, both veterans of the Clinton impeachment, drew on historic precedents from the proceedings against him and Johnson. Representative Hakeem Jeffries of New York recounted the July 25 phone call at the heart of the Democratic case and worked in at least one hip-hop reference — a signature flourish — telling senators after he made the case to subpoena Mick Mulvaney, the acting White House chief of staff: “And if you don’t know, now you know.” (The line is from “Juicy,” a 1994 hit by the Notorious B.I.G.)

Westlake Legal Group 23dc-managerphotos-06-jumbo Framing the Impeachment Case: An Inside Look at Opposing Legal Teams United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Starr, Kenneth W Senate Sekulow, Jay Alan Schiff, Adam B Ray, Robert W Photography Nadler, Jerrold Lofgren, Zoe Johnson, Andrew Jeffries, Hakeem impeachment House of Representatives Herschmann, Eric D Garcia, Sylvia R. Dershowitz, Alan M Demings, Val Clinton, Bill Cipollone, Pat A  Credit…

“This moment is about ensuring that every voter — whether a maid or a janitor, whether a nurse, a teacher, or a truck driver, whether a doctor or a mechanic — that their vote matters and that American elections are decided by the American people.”

Representative Val B. Demings — Democrat of Florida and the first female police chief of Orlando, Fla.

Westlake Legal Group 23dc-managerphotos-07-jumbo Framing the Impeachment Case: An Inside Look at Opposing Legal Teams United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Starr, Kenneth W Senate Sekulow, Jay Alan Schiff, Adam B Ray, Robert W Photography Nadler, Jerrold Lofgren, Zoe Johnson, Andrew Jeffries, Hakeem impeachment House of Representatives Herschmann, Eric D Garcia, Sylvia R. Dershowitz, Alan M Demings, Val Clinton, Bill Cipollone, Pat A  Credit…

“I remember what it feels like to not have the equipment you need when you need it. Real people’s lives are at stake. That’s why this matters.”

Representative Jason Crow — Democrat of Colorado, a lawyer and a former Army Ranger

Representatives Val B. Demings, Jason Crow and Sylvia R. Garcia, all comparatively newer lawmakers, often sought to connect the charges facing Mr. Trump to their own backgrounds. Ms. Demings drew from her experience as a police chief in Florida. Ms. Garcia recalled her time as a judge. And Mr. Crow reflected on his time as an Army Ranger dependent on military resources.

Over the allotted three days of presentation — and another day spent unsuccessfully pushing for subpoenas for additional documents and witnesses — the seven lawmakers argued that Mr. Trump’s pressure campaign against Ukraine warranted his removal from office, pointing to what they said was a dangerous pattern of putting his own interests above those of the country.

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“The impeachment clause exists to protect our freedom and our democracy in between elections. It exists to remind presidents that they serve the public, not the other way around.”

Representative Jerrold Nadler — Democrat of New York and the chairman of the Judiciary Committee

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“President Trump’s obstruction of Congress is not merely unprecedented and wrong, it’s also a high crime and misdemeanor as the framers used and understood that phrase.”

Representative Zoe Lofgren — Democrat of California and a veteran of three impeachment inquiries

Mr. Trump’s defense team includes well-known veteran prosectors from the Clinton era, including Ken Starr, the independent counsel whose report led to the impeachment of Mr. Clinton, and Robert W. Ray, Mr. Starr’s successor.

Other members include fixtures on Fox News like Alan M. Dershowitz, the celebrity lawyer who defended Mr. Simpson, Claus von Bülow, Mike Tyson and Jeffrey Epstein, the financier who was accused of sex trafficking and killed himself last year in jail.

Led by the president’s personal lawyer Jay Sekulow and Pat A. Cipollone, the White House counsel, the defense has argued that the House Democrats rushed through the process of impeachment in their zeal to overturn the results of an election they disagreed with, and that there was no evidence in the House case beyond hearsay that Mr. Trump had sought to tie the investigations to release of the security aid.

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“We live in a constitutional republic where you have deep policy concerns and deep differences. That should not be the basis of an impeachment.”

Jay Sekulow — The president’s personal lawyer

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“They’re asking you to tear up all of the ballots across this country on your own initiative, take that decision away from the American people.”

Pat A. Cipollone — The White House counsel

Mr. Cipollone and Mr. Sekulow have been the president’s most frequent defenders on the Senate floor, providing most of the arguments against the Democratic effort to vote on subpoenas for documents and witnesses ahead of the team arguments. The crux of their argument is that Mr. Trump is accused of no crime and thus cannot be impeached, a legal theory that is rejected by most constitutional scholars. They also argue that Democrats are seeking to remove the president for policy judgments with which they disagree, thus nullifying the will of voters nine months before the next election.

In a remarkable twist, Mr. Starr, known for his aggressive pursuit of Mr. Clinton’s impeachment for lying about an affair with a White House intern, told the Senate on Monday that the use of the constitutional remedy should be rare, and that Mr. Trump’s actions did not rise to it.

Westlake Legal Group 00dc-managerphotos-wh-02-jumbo Framing the Impeachment Case: An Inside Look at Opposing Legal Teams United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Starr, Kenneth W Senate Sekulow, Jay Alan Schiff, Adam B Ray, Robert W Photography Nadler, Jerrold Lofgren, Zoe Johnson, Andrew Jeffries, Hakeem impeachment House of Representatives Herschmann, Eric D Garcia, Sylvia R. Dershowitz, Alan M Demings, Val Clinton, Bill Cipollone, Pat A  Credit…

“Instead of a once-in-a-century phenomenon, which it had been, presidential impeachment has become a weapon to be wielded against one’s political opponent.”

Ken Starr — The independent counsel whose report led to the impeachment of President Bill Clinton

Westlake Legal Group 00dc-managerphotos-wh-jumbo Framing the Impeachment Case: An Inside Look at Opposing Legal Teams United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Starr, Kenneth W Senate Sekulow, Jay Alan Schiff, Adam B Ray, Robert W Photography Nadler, Jerrold Lofgren, Zoe Johnson, Andrew Jeffries, Hakeem impeachment House of Representatives Herschmann, Eric D Garcia, Sylvia R. Dershowitz, Alan M Demings, Val Clinton, Bill Cipollone, Pat A  Credit…

“You cannot turn conduct that is not impeachable into impeachable conduct simply by using words like ‘quid pro quo’ and ‘personal benefit.’”

Alan M. Dershowitz — Professor emeritus at Harvard Law School

Other lawyers on the president’s trial team include Pam Bondi, the former Florida attorney general; Eric D. Herschmann; Michael Purpura and Patrick Philbin, deputy White House counsels; and Jane Serene Raskin, who helped defend Mr. Trump during the investigation by Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel who investigated Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and ties with the Trump campaign.

On Monday, Mr. Dershowitz was the only one of the group to directly address the revelations by John R. Bolton in an unpublished manuscript that Mr. Trump directly tied aid to Ukraine aid to investigations of his political rivals. Even if true, Mr. Dershowitz said, it was not impeachable.

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