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Constitutional scholar calls Trump's Senate defense 'powerful,' 'brilliant': 'A very strong start'

'The House took a lot of hits below the waterline today'

Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images

George Washington University Law professor Jonathan Turley, a constitutional scholar and critic of President Donald Trump, showered the president's legal team with praise for their opening arguments on Saturday in Trump's impeachment trial.

"The House took a lot of hits below the waterline today. These were powerful points that gave ample foundation for senators to support acquittal without agreeing with the Dershowitz theory or the suggestion that everything was 'perfect.' I liked the low key, fact-based argument," Turley said.

He continued, "The White House did a particularly good job explaining its position on refusing discovery and also the unfair process. Moreover, it was a brilliant decision to limit the opening to a few hours. The House subjected the Senate to mind-numbing repetition for 22 hours."

"By giving up much of the first day, the White House gave a concise opening, relieved the jury, and pushed the main argument to Monday with a larger television audience. It was a sophisticated and effective strategy that paid off," Turley explained.

"A very strong start to their case," he concluded.

Turley, who has been a vocal opponent of impeachment, said last week that House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) made a "huge blunder" when he accused Republicans of participating in a "cover-up."

Nadler's comments angered Republicans, especially the moderates.

"One of the things you teach law students is that when you make arguments to juries, make sure you don't insult the jury," Turley said.

One last thing…
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