Trump names 2 lawyers to impeachment defense team

National

WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump on Sunday named two lawyers to his impeachment defense team, one day after it was revealed that the former president had parted ways with an earlier set of attorneys.

The two lawyers representing him will be David Schoen, a criminal defense lawyer with offices in Alabama and New York, and Bruce Castor, a former county prosecutor in Pennsylvania. Both issued statements through a Trump adviser saying that they were honored to take the job.

“The strength of our Constitution is about to be tested like never before in our history. It is strong and resilient. A document written for the ages, and it will triumph over partisanship yet again, and always,” said Castor, who served as district attorney for Montgomery County, outside of Philadelphia, from 2000 to 2008.

Trump’s team revealed Saturday that several South Carolina lawyers who were set to represent him at the trial starting next week were no longer participating.

Trump, the first president in American history to be impeached twice, is set to stand trial in the Senate on a charge that he incited his supporters to storm Congress on Jan. 6 as lawmakers met to certify Joe Biden’s electoral victory.

Republicans and Trump aides have made clear that they intend to make a simple argument in the trial: Trump’s trial is unconstitutional because he is no longer in office. Legal scholars say there is no bar to an impeachment trial despite Trump having left the White House.

“The Democrats’ efforts to impeach a president who has already left office is totally unconstitutional and so bad for our country,” Trump adviser Jason Miller has said.

Castor is as well-known in Pennsylvania for a case that he did not bring as he is for any of the prosecutions that he brought. He declined to charge actor Bill Cosby after a woman went to police in suburban Philadelphia in 2005 to say that Cosby had drugged and molested her a year earlier.

A new prosecutor arrested Cosby in 2015 after documents from her 2005 civil suit against Cosby were unsealed, revealing Cosby’s damaging testimony about sexual encounters with the woman, Andrea Constand, and others.

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