Prosecutors Demolish Trump’s Defense During Day 2 Opener

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On Wednesday, House impeachment case managers (who function as prosecutors) continued their work of laying out the case against ex-President Donald Trump amidst his ongoing Senate impeachment trial, which follows his impeachment by the House on a charge of incitement of insurrection. Trump spent months spreading the lie that the 2020 presidential election was rigged for Joe Biden, an idea that his followers used as a pretense when they stormed the Capitol building on January 6 and tried to forcibly stop the formal certification of Joe Biden’s electoral college victory. Trump also specifically admonished his supporters to show up in D.C. on January 6, when the certification was scheduled, and, before the violence, he told his followers to “fight like hell” on the actual day of the attack.

On Wednesday, lead impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) commented, in part, as follows:

‘You will see during this trial a man who praised and encouraged and cultivated violence… January 6 would be “wild,” [Trump] promised. Be there, “will be wild,” said the President of the United States of America. And that too, turned out to be true. You’ll see in the days that followed Donald Trump continued to aggressively promote January 6 to his followers. The event was scheduled at the precise time that Congress would be meeting in joint session to count the Electoral College votes, and to finalize the 2020 presidential election… This mob got organized so openly, because as they would later scream in these halls and as they posted on forums before the attack, they were sent here by the President. They were invited here by the President of the United States of America.’

Watch Raskin’s comments below:

Raskin added that “the evidence will show you that ex-president Trump was no innocent bystander.” Rather, “he clearly incited the January 6 insurrection.”

After Raskin, fellow House impeachment manager Rep. Joe Neguse (D-Colo.) spoke. Neguse discussed, among other issues, Trump’s response to the violence as it unfolded. When the then-president finally released a message about the then-ongoing violence, Trump said, among other travesties, “I know how you feel.” In a later message on Twitter, Trump added that “these are the things and events that happen” when a presidential election victory is stolen — which, of course, didn’t actually happen. Nevertheless, Trump openly justified the violence.

Neguse observed as follows:

‘This mob was well-orchestrated. Their conduct was intentional. They did it all in plain sight — proudly, openly, and loudly. Because they believed, they truly believed, that they were doing this for [Trump], that this was their patriotic duty.’

Discussing Trump’s long campaign to convince his supporters that the presidential election was rigged for Biden, Neguse added the following:

‘In the months as the president made these statements, people listened. Armed supporters surrounded election officials’ homes. The Secretary of State for Georgia got death threats. Officials warned the president that his rhetoric was dangerous and it was going to result in deadly violence, and that’s what makes this so different, because when he saw firsthand the violence that his conduct was creating — he didn’t stop it. He didn’t condemn the violence. He incited it further. And he got more specific. He didn’t just tell them to “fight like hell.” He told them how, where, and when.’

Watch Neguse below:

During the Capitol violence, Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick was struck by a fire extinguisher and later died, and Trump supporter Ashli Babbitt was shot and killed by an officer as she attempted to climb through a broken sheet of glass to an area where she’d have been very close to directly accessing members of Congress. Neguse added as follows:

‘Think for a moment, just a moment, of the lives lost that day, of the more than 140 wounded police officers, and ask yourself — if as soon as this had started, President Trump had simply gone onto TV, just logged onto Twitter and said “Stop the attack!” — if he had done so with even half as much force as he said “Stop the steal!” — how many lives would we have saved?’

Check out his comments below: