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More than 700 historians call for Trump to be impeached

By
Darryl Coote

Dec. 17 (UPI) -- More than 700 historians have urged the House of Representatives to impeach President Donald Trump, saying his actions are what the framers of the Constitution had in mind as grounds for impeachment.

In a letter published Monday, the group of 752 professional historians said the House should vote to impeach, as Trump's conduct "constitutes a clear and present danger to the Constitution."

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"It is our considered judgment that if President Trump's misconduct does not rise to the level of impeachment, then virtually nothing does," the historians wrote.

The House is expected to vote this week on two articles of impeachment charging Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

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The charges stem from Trump threatening to withhold aid from Ukraine unless it investigates Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden -- and his son Hunter Biden, who served on the board of Ukrainian gas company Burisma between 2014 and early this year. The obstruction charge accuses Trump of directing executive branch agencies and officials to ignore subpoenas and perform other measures to obstruct the judiciary committee's investigation into the matter.

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The historians argue that Trump's actions fit Alexander Hamilton's description of the purpose of impeachment, and his conduct stokes the Constitution framer's fears that the president could become a tool of corruption.

"President Trump's lawless obstruction of the House of Representatives, which is rightly seeking documents and witness testimony in pursuit of its constitutionally mandated oversight role, has demonstrated brazen contempt for representative government," they said. "So have his attempts to justify that obstruction on the grounds that the executive enjoys absolute immunity, a fictitious doctrine that, if tolerated, would turn the president into an elected monarch about the law."

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The letter follows a similar one signed by hundreds of legal scholars and published by nonprofit Protect Democracy on Dec. 7 urging the House to impeach Trump.

With more than 850 signatories, the letter says there's "overwhelming" evidence Trump betrayed his oath of office by seeking a quid pro quo with Ukraine.

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