From Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA11)’s office:
Connolly Joins Impeachment Experts for National Town Hall on the Need to Convict Trump
Fairfax, VA – Yesterday, Congressman Gerry Connolly, Chairman of the House Government Operations subcommittee, joined the World Mental Health Coalition for a National Town Hall titled, “The Imperative to Convict Donald Trump,” bringing together legal, constitutional, criminal law, historical, and mental health perspectives.
“If what the President did is not an impeachable offense, exactly the kind our framers feared, then the mechanism of impeachment is functionally useless,” Chairman Connolly said. “Without accountability for Trump, any losing President has more of an incentive to deploy violence to remain in power and to do so with impunity because of the supposed January exception that President Trump and his allies have grafted into the text of the Constitution. This is about the integrity of elections, and taking a clear stand that we will not devolve into a system where each election has two winners wherein the prevailing party is not declared through the ballot box, but by some other means.”
All Panelists agreed it is vitally important to the nation’s health and democracy that Trump be convicted by the Senate. All further agreed that regardless of Senate outcome Trump should face criminal prosecution for engaging in seditious conspiracy against the U.S. Congress as it pursued its Constitutional responsibilities as well as for violating federal and state election laws and other charges.
Most importantly at this time, all Panelists agreed the Senate must conduct a serious trial calling all relevant witnesses, by subpoena if necessary, including now citizen Donald Trump. The trial must not be abbreviated or shortchanged as some in Congress are wrongly and dangerously advocating.
The Panel of Speakers at the Town Hall included:
LAURENCE TRIBE – Constitutional Scholar at the Harvard Law School and one of the country’s most influential Constitutional Law experts
REP. GERRY CONNOLLY – Member of the House of Representatives Oversight and Reform Committee as well as the House Committee on Foreign Affairs; Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Government Operations and Chairman of the U.S. Delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly
NORMAN EISEN – Former Special Counsel for Trump’s First Impeachment Trial, former ambassador to the Czech Republic, and former White House Special Counsel for Barack Obama
CLAIRE FINKELSTEIN – Criminal lawyer, Distinguished Professor of Law and Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and Director of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law
RICHARD PAINTER – Former Chief White House Counsel for George W. Bush, founding board member of Take Back our Republic, and former chair of CREW, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington
RUTH BEN-GHIAT – Professor of history at New York University and a leading international expert on fascism and authoritarian leaders
BANDY LEE – Forensic psychiatrist, violence expert, and President of the World Mental Health Coalition
A video of the two-hour Town Hall is available here.