When I testified in the House Judiciary Committee impeachment hearing, I cited this case in my criticism of the pledge by Democrats to impeach Trump by Christmas despite a very incomplete record. While I opposed some of the proposed articles of impeachment that were subsequently dropped by the panel, I said Trump could be legitimately impeached on abuse of power and obstruction of justice if the House could establish such violations. But the House refused to wait just a couple months to build a much stronger case to remove Trump. In the mad rush to push impeachment, Democrats could not have made it easier for his team.

Securing an impeachment so fast does not earn you a historic prize. It simply earns you a historic failure. By not seeking to compel numerous key witnesses, the House now relies on the Senate to complete its case. Since the House has maintained that the record overwhelmingly proves that Trump is guilty, the Senate could simply try the case on the record supplied by the House. Indeed, in the 1999 impeachment of President Clinton, Senate Democrats, including Minority Leader Charles Schumer, fought against any witnesses and sought a summary vote without a trial.

I was particularly concerned about moving forward by Christmas on the second article of alleged obstruction of Congress. The House elected to push through impeachment with an abbreviated period of roughly three months and declared any delay by Trump, even to seek judicial reviews, to be a high crime and misdemeanor.