If you didn’t have a chance to follow along on the first day of the impeachment trial yesterday, here’s a recap of the important parts.
First off, the Democrats’ Lead House Manager, Rep. Jamie Raskin, in incredibly impressive. I encourage you to watch his opening remarks, which you can do HERE, where he lays out the basic framework of the case.
I also want you to watch his closing remarks. He gets personal, quite personal, about the insurrection and touches on something that should affect every Senator, no matter which party.
Two key points to remember:
There is no “January exception” to the Constitution. The President is expected to keep true to his oath all the way through his presidency. Raskin, who taught Constitutional Law, explained the constitutionality of the trial by citing none other than Alexander Hamilton, who himself explained exactly where the structure for impeachments came from. And those examples include officials who were held accountable for their actions AFTER they had left office.
Furthermore, Trump incited the insurrection DURING his presidency. The House impeached him DURING his presidency. And the Constitution says that the Senate will hold a trial for ALL impeachments. Case closed.
Nevertheless, there was a vote on whether or not the trial was Constitutional. The final vote was 56-44 that, yes, the trial was Constitutional. Republican Senators Bill Cassidy (LA), Susan Collins (ME), Lisa Murkowski (AK), Mitt Romney (UT), Ben Sasse (NE) and Pat Toomey (PA) voted with the Democrats.
At this point, I should mention Trump’s defense. You might remember that his original impeachment lawyers quit one week ago. Fellow lawyers all seemed to agree that the most likely reason why they did that was because their client, Trump, asked them to lie. That is one of the reasons judges will allow lawyers to leave a client on the eve of trial, which is frowned upon. So, enter Bruce Castor and David Schoen.
They all have deep experience in criminal defense, but none of them are known as constitutional scholars, which seems like a qualification you’d want to have in an impeachment trial. Bruce Castor, a former Republican district attorney in Pennsylvania, is well known for having made the decision NOT to pursue a sexual assault case against Bill Cosby. David Schoen has in his illustrious past a stint representing Roger Stone and Russian mobsters. Which to be perfectly honest is what I’d expect from Trump.
Long story short, their performance today was … bad. And I don’t say that as a true-blue Democrat who wants to see Trump convicted. Trump reportedly was livid. CNN has that story.
Tomorrow, the trial will continue.
In the meantime, if you haven’t yet called your Senators about the trial, please do so. Need a reason why? Read this.
Thank you for taking action.