On Tuesday, Feb. 9, Trump’s defense lawyers presented their opening arguments in Trump’s second impeachment trial.
Alas, things did not go well.
Trump’s Lawyers Meander About
The Democrats — patently absurd and easily disprovable though their charges are — at least appeared to be well-prepared. They had a video montage prepared, and Representative Raskin opened things for his side with a speech that was at least rhetorically decent.
Trump’s defense lawyer Bruce Castor, however, meandered about and couldn’t bring himself to remain focused on the topic at hand. Shockingly, at one point, he even conceded that he thought the Democrats’ case was so good that he had to change something about his presentation at the very last minute.
“I’ll be quite frank with you,” he said, “we changed what we were going to do on account that we thought that the House manager’s presentation was well done, and I wanted you to know that we have responses to those things.”
Famed attorney Alan Dershowitz, who made an appearance and defended Trump at his first impeachment trial, was nonplussed. “There is no argument — I have no idea what he is doing,” he said of Castor’s performance.
It’s almost like Trump’s own lawyers are trying to sabotage him and are secretly working for the enemy.
David Schoen, another of Trump’s lawyers, made the point that Democrats had always been fishing for pretexts on which to impeach the former president. This is all obviously true, but it also hints at the ultimate reason why none of this impeachment hullabaloo really matters in the slightest.
Trump’s greatest argument — besides the fact that he had not even finished speaking before the Capitol had been breached, showing that his words could not possibly have been the direct cause of that event — is that he explicitly told his supporters on Jan. 6 to “peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.”
Trump’s lawyers should be emphasizing the word “peacefully” at every opportunity and making sure that no one forgets that Trump used it.
Trump’s lawyers may be delivering a lackluster performance so far — and Trump himself is reportedly furious with them for it — but in the grand scheme of things, does any of this really matter?
It seems rather obvious that it doesn’t. After all, impeachment is a tool that is meant to remove a dangerous, criminal or ineffective officeholder from office. Trump is not the president anymore. He does not hold political office.
That alone makes the entire trial effectively null and void and turns the entire proceeding into a farce.
There’s no way that even a single Republican will support this. Doing so would be the end of their political careers.
In a few months, we’ll forget that this ever even happened — just like we have with the first impeachment trial.