In an interview with MSNBC broadcast on Saturday, Harvard Law professor and constitutional scholar, Laurence Tribe, discussed the latest developments in the impeachment probe into President Donald Trump, reports Raw Story.
On Friday, former United States Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch testified before the United States Congress, discussing the president’s alleged misconduct during his contacts with the Ukrainian government.
Yovanovitch’s testimony was briefly interrupted by the president himself after he decided to take to Twitter and weigh in on the issue. In a series of Twitter messages, Trump insulted and belittled the diplomat, questioning her credentials and her career, and arguing that he has the right to appoint ambassadors however he sees fit.
The president’s Twitter attack may have opened him up to new articles of impeachment, however. As Fox News host Bret Baier noted while commenting on Trump’s behavior, the president appeared to add “an article of impeachment real time as this hearing is going on.”
According to Tribe, Baier is correct.
“I think Bret is right. I don’t always agree with people on Fox, but this was intimidating right out in the open,” the legal expert said, explaining that the effect of Trump’s tweets was clearly “intimidating” which “makes it clear that this will be part of the impeachment articles.”
“It’s not just Ambassador Yovanovitch who is being intimidated,” Tribe added, arguing that other witnesses familiar with how Trump used the office of the presidency to benefit himself might not be as forthcoming and straightforward as Yovanovitch, given that they now realize the president is willing to dump a “ton of bricks” on them via Twitter.
Tribe also offered a psychological analysis of the president, suggesting that Trump is “insecure” and that insecurity is the main reason he is lashing out at U.S. diplomats.
“He’s obviously terribly insecure, he’s insecure even about his own legitimacy as president,” Tribe opined, adding that the president’s insecurity is also why he wants to “cover up” the role Russia played in the 2016 presidential election.
According to Tribe, Trump is “turning the whole presidency into a vanity project while the country suffers.”
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) November 17, 2019
Tribe is not the only expert who believes Trump committed an impeachable offense during the Yovanovitch hearing. On Friday, professor John Coates similarly opined that the president publicly attacking a witness essentially amounts to witness tampering, which is an impeachable offense.
Coates went a step further than Tribe, suggesting that the commander-in-chief acts like a mobster whenever he feels threatened. “Once caught in a crime, Trump’s mob-schooled instinct is to intimidate witnesses — yet another crime,” Coates said.