Sen. Rand Paul: John Roberts Not Presiding Over Impeachment Trial ‘Crystalized’ It Is Unconstitutional

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is suggesting that Chief Justice John Roberts‘ absence at the upcoming Senate impeachment trial against President Donald Trump “crystalized” it for him that the trial is unconstitutional.

“We’ve long been aware that a constitutional motion is a privileged motion and that it could happen. We discussed it within our office,” Paul told The Hill on Thursday.

He added, “What really crystalized it for me is that about a week ago we were on a Republican conference call and they said the chief justice wasn’t coming.”

Paul has been pushing that the Senate’s impeachment trial is unconstitutional, saying earlier this week that “impeachment of a private citizen is illegal and essentially a bill of attainder.”

“A sham, this is,” he said on the Senate floor Tuesday.

Touching on a Senate Republican conference call that occurred on Jan. 21, Paul told The Hill, “Myself and others were like, ‘Oh my goodness, the chief justice is not coming. That’s a huge, huge signal that there’s something wrong with this proceeding.'”

He also said, “The optics of the chief justice not coming and then also the optics of a person who had favored the last impeachment now presiding over the trial — who’s also going to vote in the trial — it just didn’t look right or sound right to any of us.”

Senate President Pro Tempore Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is expected to preside over the trial. Leahy — the Senate’s longest-serving member — previously voted to convict Trump of two impeachment articles.

Leahy said in a recent statement, “When I preside over the impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump, I will not waver from my constitutional and sworn obligations to administer the trial with fairness, in accordance with the Constitution and the laws.”

On Tuesday, all but five Republican senators voted to declare the trial unconstitutional. Those who did not include Republican Sens. Mitt Romney (Utah), Ben Sasse (Neb.), Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), and Pat Toomey (Pa.).

The House of Representatives voted to impeach Trump for a second time, charging him with “incitement of insurrection.” The Senate impeachment trial is set to begin the week of Feb. 8.


  1. His comments always crystallize my belief that he is the dumbest of the senators and would even be competitive in the House.

  2. Senator Paul’s continuing to add to his bizarre beliefs CRYSTALIZES for most Americans that the guy is “a nut case.” How could his voters forget his other musings:

    1. Government shouldn’t require private businesses to serve customers of all races
    Louisville Courier-Journal, April 25, 2010

    2. The U.S. is secretly planning a European Union-style merger with Mexico and Canada
    —Ron Paul campaign event, Bozeman, MT, 2008

    3. A nuclear Iran isn’t necessarily a threat
    “Our national security is not threatened by Iran having one nuclear weapon.”
    —Ron Paul rally, Burlington, VT, October 2007

    4. . Rein in Medicare — but NOT Medicare’s payments to doctors
    “Medicare is socialized medicine,” and one way to control medical costs would be to impose a $2,000 deductible in the program.
    —Comments in Lexington, KY, June 2009

    5. Mountaintop coal mining is good for real estate values
    “I think whoever owns the property can do with the property as they wish, and if the coal company buys it from a private property owner and they want to do it, fine. The other thing is that I think coal gets a bad name, because apparently a lot of the land is desirable once it gets flattened out… I don’t think anyone’s going to be missing a hill or two here and there. Some people like the flat land, and some of it apparently has become rather valuable when it’s become flattened.”
    —TV interview, October 2009

    6. Masks ‘Are All About Submission’
    “If Fauci has his way, you’ll never give up on the mask,” warned Paul. “It’s all about submission. They want you to submit to their will, whether there’s any science.”
    Breitbart, December, 2020.

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