House Democrats lay out impeachment arguments


The House made the case for convicting Trump, while Trump’s team asserted a trial is unconstitutional.

The House of Representatives impeachment managers filed a lengthy pretrial brief on Tuesday, making the case that former President Donald Trump should be convicted of incitement of insurrection by the Senate — and banned from holding future federal office.

Trump’s team submitted their own, shorter filing as an initial response to the charge against him. They argue that Trump did nothing wrong in spending months trying to overturn the election results ahead of his speech to a crowd in Washington, DC, on January 6 — and that even if he did, it’s unconstitutional to have an impeachment trial for a former president, so the Senate can’t do anything about it.

These two documents aren’t directly responding to each other, since they were filed at around the same time. Trump’s pretrial brief in his own defense, which may be more comprehensive, is due this Monday, February 8. The perfunctory nature of the former president’s Tuesday filing is likely related to the tumult among his legal team, with key figures quitting this weekend, leaving only attorneys Bruce Castor and David Schoen still on board.

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It’s unclear how much any of these arguments (on either side) will actually matter, since senators’ decisions on an impeachment verdict often come down to their own political calculations. Furthermore, it takes 67 senators to convict in an impeachment trial, meaning 17 Republicans would have to go along with every member of the Democratic caucus — and all but five in the Senate GOP already sided with Trump’s legal team on an early procedural vote, making the vast majority of GOP senators likely to acquit.

The background to Trump’s filing is that the former president reportedly wants his lawyers to make a (false) case that the election was stolen from him, but they’re hesitant to do this outright because, well, it’s false.AMIBC® - VOTE! BE COUNTED! BE HEARD!


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