Renowned legal scholar Alan Dershowitz agreed with President Donald Trump Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh that sitting presidents should not be criminally prosecuted or investigated, and that impeachment is the proper remedy to wrongdoing by the chief executive.
Democrats, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, are promulgating an argument that President Trump chose Kavanaugh to shield himself from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.
The senators point to 2009 Minnesota Law Review article in which Kavanaugh advocated for Congress to pass legislation that allows presidents to postpone civil lawsuits and facing criminal prosecution until after they leave or are removed from office.
“I believe it vital that the President be able to focus on his never-ending tasks with as few distractions as possible,” the judge wrote.
“Criminal investigations targeted at or revolving around a President are inevitably politicized by both their supporters and critics,” Kavanaugh explained.
He noted that the Constitution provides the proper remedy for a president believed to be guilty of wrongdoing: impeachment.
“If the President does something dastardly, the impeachment process is available,” he wrote. “In short, the Constitution establishes a clear mechanism to deter executive malfeasance; we should not burden a sitting President with civil suits, criminal investigations, or criminal prosecutions.”
“Kavanaugh is 100 percent correct,” the Harvard law professor emeritus told Fox News host Bill Hemmer on Wednesday.
“Not only is he right about the president. He’s right about the Senate and the House,” Dershowitz continued. “They can’t be investigated for what they’ve done on the floor. It is right about judges and prosecutors.”
“All of them are immune from investigation. They’re immune from prosecution for performing their constitutionally authorized acts,” he said.
Dershowitz has stated in the past that Mueller cannot find Trump obstructed justice by firing former FBI Director James Comey, when, as president, he had the constitutional authority to do so.
Hemmer responded to the professor on Wednesday saying, “It just appears that any time (Democrats) get the opportunity to bring Russia up again, that is where they go.”
Dershowitz — who authored the newly released book “The Case Against Impeaching Trump” — contended that Kavanaugh actually espoused a lesser standard for impeachment of “dastardly” act, than the Constitution states, which is criminal conduct.
“You must commit a crime,” said the legal scholar.
Dershowitz told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews on Tuesday that even if Mueller could prove Trump colluded with Russia during the 2016 campaign, collusion is not a crime.
Fox News personality Mark Levin — who served chief in staff for Attorney General Edwin Meese during the Reagan administration — has repeatedly argued Trump cannot be criminally prosecuted while in office.
In May, Levin cited the Department of Justice legal opinion memos drafted during the Nixon and Clinton administrations concluding impeachment is the remedy prescribed by the Constitution.
“Grand juries and prosecutors cannot supplant Congress,” he said. “The only way to remove a sitting president is through the impeachment process, not through the indictment process.”
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