Former president Donald Trump’s legal team issued a response to the House impeachment managers’ request that he testify in next week’s Senate impeachment trial, calling the invitation “a public relations stunt.”
Trump’s legal team later clarified that the former president will not testify during the trial. House impeachment managers formally requested that Trump testify under oath during the impeachment proceedings set to begin the week of February 8.
On February 4, Lead Impeachment Manager Jamie Raskin sent a letter to Trump requesting that he provide testimony under oath, either before or during the Senate impeachment trial, about his conduct on January 6 during the Capitol insurrection. The letter comes after former President Trump’s legal team filed an answer to the Article of Impeachment, denying incontrovertible facts about the President’s conduct on and leading up to January 6 and asserting that “the 45th President of the United States performed admirably in his role as president, at all times doing what he thought was in the best interests of the American people.”
In the letter, Lead Manager Raskin wrote, “Two days ago, you filed an Answer in which you denied many factual allegations set forth in the article of impeachment. You have thus attempted to put critical facts at issue notwithstanding the clear and overwhelming evidence of your constitutional offense. In light of your disputing these factual allegations, I write to invite you to provide testimony under oath, either before or during the Senate impeachment trial, concerning your conduct on Jan. 6, 2021. We would propose that you provide your testimony (of course including cross-examination) as early as Monday, February 8, 2021, and not later than Thursday, February 11, 2021. We would be pleased to arrange such testimony at a mutually convenient time and place.”
“If you decline this invitation, we reserve any and all rights, including the right to establish at trial that your refusal to testify supports a strong adverse inference regarding your actions (and inaction) on January 6, 2021,” Lead Manager Raskin continued. “I would request that you respond to this letter by no later than Friday, February 5, 2021 at 5pm.”