House members who are handling the impeachment case against ex-President Donald Trump at his Senate trial this week have assembled “new evidence” against him, according to a CNBC report. Originally, the House charged Trump with incitement of insurrection after a mob of his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol building under the pretense of his lies about the 2020 presidential election, and this issue will be at the center of the trial proceedings. According to Congressional aides speaking to reporters on Tuesday, House impeachment case managers will show that Trump didn’t just incite the violence in the lead-up to the incident — rather, he also “incited it further” as the rioting was underway.
One of the central components of this argument might be a tweet that Trump posted on the afternoon of January 6 in which he characterized then-Vice President Mike Pence as cowardly because of his refusal to go along with Trump’s plan to fraudulently get himself declared the winner. At the Capitol, rioters chanted “Hang Mike Pence!” and members of the mob put up an actual gallows outside of the building. What if the mob had reached Pence? Eventually, Trump openly justified the violence, writing via his since-removed Twitter account that “these are the things and events that happen” when an election victory is stolen, which, of course, didn’t actually happen.
As aides for impeachment managers (who function as the prosecutors in the case) put it, the “evidence of Trump’s guilt in this case is overwhelming.” According to those allies for the impeachment managers, arguments from House members will unfold like a “violent crime prosecution,” and fundamentally, the “House will establish at trial that President Trump merits conviction and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor trust, or profit under the United States.” An aide added as follows, discussing Republican Senators’ perspective:
‘Once they see that this President did in fact incite a violent insurrection in order to hold onto power, I think it very well may be the case that reluctant senators change their mind and vote to convict.’
Trump’s side has complained that pre-planning of the Capitol attack means that Trump couldn’t have personally incited the incident, but his incitement goes well beyond a speech that he gave to a crowd of his supporters on January 6. For months, he spread the delusional lie that the presidential election was rigged for Joe Biden, and rioters subsequently hoped to forcibly block the certification of Biden’s electoral college victory by Congress.