U.S. senator: Impeachment of Trump is constitutional, 'We have precedent'

President Donald J. Trump disembarks Air Force One on his arrival to Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020, returning from his Christmas holiday in Palm Beach, Florida. (Official White House photo by Tia Dufour)

While many legal experts believe a private citizen cannot be impeached and convicted, U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., says the process is constitutional, claiming, “We have precedent.”

“It is constitutional,” Klobuchar said on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.

“We have precedent from way back when a secretary of war was tried after he had left office. And, obviously, there was a remedy that would help in the future, which would ban former President Trump from running again.”

Though Kobuchar did not specify the Cabinet member’s name, she was likely referring to U.S. War Secretary William Belknap, who was embroiled in controversy involving kickbacks from political appointees in 1876. Though Belknap resigned before going to trial, senators presumed they could impeach officials who were no longer in office.

When asked about enough Republican support for a Trump conviction in the Senate, Klobuchar said: “My colleagues have not yet committed about what they’re going to do.”

She personally blamed Trump for the actions of a riotous mob that penetrated the U.S. Capitol during the certification vote for Joe Biden on Jan. 6.

“As if it’s not enough that he sent an angry mob down the mall to invade the Capitol, didn’t try to stop it and a police officer was killed.”

“I don’t really know what else you need to know. The facts were there, we saw it right there on the platform during the inauguration as you can still see the spray paint at the bottom of many of the columns.”

The Democrat admitted “there are many options” that were available for lawmakers, but right now they were most focused on impeachment.

Klobuchar was joined by Republican Sen. Mitt Romney.

“It’s pretty clear that the effort is constitutional,” Romney said Sunday on CNN. “I believe that what is being alleged and what we saw, which is incitement to insurrection, is an impeachable offense. If not, what is?”

The push by Democrats to impeach and convict a president after he has left office has outraged even left-leaning legal experts.

“They are simply wrong as a matter of the constitutional text and meaning,” said famed Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz.

Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz

“President Trump’s opponents are so angry at the president for his volatile speech – which was misguided and wrong but completely protected by the First Amendment – that they are prepared to tear up the Constitution in an effort to remove him by any and all means.”

He addressed the Democrats’ admitted goal of preventing Trump from ever holding office again.

“Such an absurd interpretation of the Constriction would literally allow millions of ordinary citizens over the age of 35 to be impeached and disqualified from future office holding.”

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