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Tipsheet

Sen. Rand Paul: Here's the Proof the Impeachment Trial Against Trump Is Unconstitutional

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) laid out a number of reasons why he believes the second impeachment trial against former President Donald Trump is unconstitutional. 

"Constitutional scholars have said you impeach and disqualify. If the person isn't there to impeach, you can't do either one of them," he said.

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The senator said there are other forms of punishment outside of impeachment, something he believes Trump has already endured. 

"I think he has suffered under public opinion. His numbers are greatly reduced and so I think there's all kinds of punishment," the senator explained. "We've had a country for 250 years and every other Congress thought it was unwise to keep going after an ex-president."

Chris Wallace asked whether the 1877 impeachment of former War Secretary William Belknap could be pointed to as precedent. Paul, however, said that wasn't the case because Belknap was not president at the time.

"When you look at impeaching the president, the Constitution has some very specific requirements. It says when the president is impeached the Chief Justice shall preside," he said.

According to Paul, when the Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) called Chief Justice John Roberts to preside over Trump's impeachment trial, Roberts declined. And that should be a signal that the entire trial is unconstitutional.

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"Justice Roberts said, 'Heck no, I'm not coming across the street because you're not impeaching thee president,'" Paul said. "This was a strong signal to all of us that this was going to be a partisan hearing with a Democrat in the chair, who's already voted for impeachment."

"You think we're going to get a fair rulings out of a Democrat who's already previously expressed favor for impeaching [Trump] and already voted to impeach him this time?" the senator asked. 

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