Trump adds Ken Starr and Alan Dershowitz to the impeachment defense team

Alan Dershowitz, the constitutional attorney, and Robert Ray, Starr’s successor to the Office of the Independent Council during the Clinton administration, are joining the team, people said.

The three are expected to join a legal team led by White House adviser Pat Cipollone and external lawyer Jay Sekulow, who are yet to make statements on behalf of the President in the Senate. Former Florida attorney general Pam Bondi and longtime Trump personal consultant Jane Raskin will also complete the president’s legal impeachment team, said a person familiar with the matter.

A spokesman for Trump’s legal team said Dershowitz will present oral discussions at the Senate trial.

“He is participating in this impeachment process to defend the integrity of the Constitution and to prevent the creation of a dangerous constitutional precedent,” said the legal team, who noted that Dershowitz opposed Clinton’s impeachment and voted for his wife, Hillary Clinton, in the 2016 Presidential election.

Republicans on the spot as the Senate prepares for the impeachment drama

Starr and Ray are expected to play a constitutional and historical role during the proceedings in support of Cipollone and Sekulow.

Trump relied on Dershowitz for advice during Mueller’s investigation and impeachment. The two had been discussing Dershowitz’s membership for several weeks.

Bondi worked in the White House as a consultant during the impeachment procedure. Raskin is a white-collar defense attorney who, together with her husband, worked for Trump during the Mueller investigation.

The decision to allow GOP House allies to participate in defense is still fluid, people said.

Officials hesitated to talk about who they are adding to the legal team after a failed attempt to hire Trey Gowdy last fall. Gowdy only became the new face of Trump’s impeachment defense team for a few hours before Trump claimed that federal lobbying rules would not allow him to start until January. He went on to talk to Gowdy privately about the situation.

This story has been updated to include additional reports and information.


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