Trial managers, Trump lawyers spar over witnesses

House impeachment prosecutors, Trump defense lawyers spar over the question of witnesses in Donald Trump's impeachment trial. Democrats want to hear from a GOP congresswoman. In response a Trump defense lawyer threatens hundreds of depositions. (Feb. 13)

Video Transcript

JAMIE RASKIN: I think we've done an exceedingly thorough and comprehensive job with all the evidence that was available. Last night, this was breaking news. And it responded directly to a question that was being raised by the President's defense counsel, saying that we had not sufficiently proven to their satisfaction-- although I think we've proven to the satisfaction of the American people, certainly-- that the president after the breach and the invasion took place was not working on the side of defending the Capitol, but rather was continuing to pursue his political goals.

And the information that came out last night by Congresswoman Butler, apparently backed up by contemporaneous notes that she had taken, I think will put to rest any lingering doubts raised by the president's counsel who now says he wants to interview hundreds of people. There's only one person the president's counsel really needs to interview, and that's their own client.

- Counsel?

MICHAEL VAN DER VEEN: There are a lot of depositions that need to be happen. Nancy Pelosi's deposition needs to be taken. Vice President Harris's deposition absolutely needs to be taken, and not by Zoom. None of these depositions should be done by Zoom. We didn't do this hearing by Zoom. These depositions should be done in person in my office in Philadelphia. That's where they should be done.

[LAUGHTER]

I don't know how many civil lawyers are here, but that's the way it works, folks. When you want somebody deposition, you send a notice of deposition and they appear at the place where the notice says. That's the civil process. I don't know why you're laughing. It is civil process. That is the way lawyers do it. We send notices of deposition. In the--

[INTERPOSING VOICES]

- I would remind everybody that we will have order in the chamber during these proceedings.

MICHAEL VAN DER VEEN: I haven't laughed at any of you, and there's nothing laughable here. He mentioned my client coming in to testify. That is not the way it's done. If he wanted to talk to Donald Trump, he should have put a subpoena down. Like, I'm going to slap subpoenas on a good number of people if witnesses are what is required here for them to try to get their case back in order. Now is the time to end this. Now is the time to hear the closing arguments. Now is the time to vote your conscience. Thank you.