US President Donald Trump and some of his top advisers are considering calling in lawyer Alan Dershowitz to defend him should the president face an impeachment trial, ABC News reported Thursday.
Rumors that Dershowitz could be added to Trump’s defense team gained momentum when the law professor attended the White House Hanukkah party on Wednesday and was asked by the president to speak at the event.
Republican North Carolina Congressman Mark Meadows told the House Freedom Caucus podcast on Wednesday that he wanted to see Dershowitz on the president’s team.
“I have advocated that there needs to be one other attorney that’s added to the mix for the president, and that is Alan Dershowitz,” Meadows said. “I think he’d be great to come in, get Alan Dershowitz in to be part of that defense team.”
Trump is alleged to have wielded the power of the presidency for personal and political gain by pressuring Ukraine to interfere in the 2020 US election.
Dershowitz has already been warming up to the task, publishing an op-ed earlier this week on The Hill in which he argued that House Judiciary committee impeachment proposals “are so vague and open ended that they could be applied in partisan fashion by a majority of the House against almost any president from the opposing party.”
On Sunday Dershowitz told host John Catsimatidis on his AM 970 radio show that he was dropped from testifying to the House Judiciary Committee last week as part of a panel of constitutional scholars because of accusations against him made by a woman who says she was trafficked to him for sex by disgraced financier Jeffery Epstein, who died in August in prison.
Virginia Roberts Giuffre has claimed in court documents that Epstein lent her out to have sex with Dershowitz, a charge that the lawyer emphatically denies.
“They wanted me to be there,” Dershowitz said of the panel. “They called and asked me if I would be willing to testify, and I said I would. Just because there is an accusation out there, the decision was made not to use me.”
Dershowitz previously represented Epstein during mid-2000s sex offense investigations and helped negotiate a plea deal in which Epstein was convicted of abusing underage girls but given only 13 months in a private wing of a county jail.
Dershowitz has also already publicly defended Trump in television interviews during the Mueller investigation into Russian meddling with the 2016 presidential election, ABC News reported.