Alan Dershowitz, Ken Starr join Trump’s impeachment defense team

Now that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has finally transmitted the articles of impeachment to the Senate and named her team of prosecutors, President Donald Trump followed suit and revealed who would be on his impeachment defense team.

Several newly-announced members of Trump’s team will be quite familiar to regular viewers of Fox News as they are frequent guests on the network, including attorney Alan Dershowitz and former independent counsel Ken Starr.

Alan Dershowitz to defend the Constitution

It had initially been revealed that President Trump’s impeachment defense team would be led by White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and Trump’s personal attorney Jay Sekulow. The rest of the team was revealed in a statement from the White House on Friday.

Chief among that team is Dershowitz, a high-profile defense attorney, constitutional expert, and Harvard law professor emeritus, who has made frequent appearances on Fox News for some time and has set aside his own political leanings to defend the office of the presidency from the usurpations of a highly partisan Congress.

While few could legitimately argue against Dershowitz’s knowledge of the Constitution and the law, he does come with a bit of baggage related to some of the unsavory characters he has associated with or defended in the past, such as O.J. Simpson and Jeffrey Epstein.

“The president asked me to do this, and the legal team asked me to do this,” Dershowitz told CNBC and explained that his role would be “to address the constitutional arguments against impeachment and removal.” Dershowitz further clarified his role in the trial with a statement posted to Twitter on Friday:

STATEMENT REGARDING PROFESSOR DERSHOWITZ’S ROLE IN THE SENATE TRIAL – Professor Dershowitz will present oral arguments at the Senate trial to address the constitutional arguments against impeachment and removal. While Professor Dershowitz is non partisan when it comes to the constitution—he opposed the impeachment of President Bill Clinton and voted for Hillary Clinton— he believes the issues at stake go to the heart of our enduring Constitution. He is participating in this impeachment trial to defend the integrity of the Constitution and to prevent the creation of a dangerous constitutional precedent.

The rest of the team

Another familiar face for Fox viewers is former independent counsel Ken Starr, who oversaw the Whitewater investigation into the Clintons in the 1990s and led the impeachment of former President Bill Clinton after he perjured himself with regard to the Monica Lewinsky sex scandal.

Fans of Fox News are also likely to recognize at least two other members of Trump’s team from their time spent providing legal analysis on the network — former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and former independent counsel Robert Ray, who succeeded Starr on the Whitewater investigation.

Bondi has been serving as a special adviser to the president on legal matters for some time, and Ray has been a reliable defender of the president in the media throughout the entire impeachment saga.

The defense team will also include Jane Raskin, who is private counsel to the president, and Eric Herschmann, of the Kasowitz, Benson, Torres LLP law firm.

White House statement on impeachment

In the statement from the White House, press secretary Stephanie Grisham said, “President Trump has done nothing wrong and is confident that this team will defend him, the voters, and our democracy from this baseless, illegitimate impeachment.”

“The Articles of Impeachment House Democrats have adopted threaten grave and lasting damage to our institutions and to our Nation,” she added. “The President looks forward to the end of this partisan and unconstitutional impeachment. It’s time for Congress to turn its attention back to the work of the American people and leave sham political investigations like this one in the past.”

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