President Trump's Impeachment Trial: Day 1


Washington D.C.
Credits: Chicago-Sun Times.

The US House of Representatives passed the article of impeachment on the then-president of the USA Donald Trump over "incitement of insurrection” on 13 January, by 232 to 197 after his supporters stormed the Capitol, an attempted coup to overturn November’s election result. After the house passed the article, the case is to be heard on the Senate floor on Tuesday as Senate leaders agreed on giving the impeachment managers and Trump's lawyers up to 16 hours each to present their cases and creating the option for a debate and vote to call witnesses. Here's the major takeaway from the Day 1 of Donald Trump's impeachment trial;

  • Raskin opened the debate by saying everything will be based on cold, hard truths. He argues that if they let go of incidents of January 6 without any consequences then it might even be our future and that's why it is necessary to convict the former president.
  • Rep. Jamie Raskin of Maryland, the lead House impeachment manager, opened his presentation with a video showing disturbing footage of how protesters overran police and ransacked the Capitol, forcing lawmakers in the House and Senate to flee their chambers. The video was spliced with Trump's speech on Jan. 6 ahead of the riots, showing the crowd's reaction to Trump as he urged them to head to the Capitol. "If that's not an impeachable offense, then there's no such thing," Raskin argued.
  • While the House impeachment managers make their presentation, most senators were paying attention, either taking notes or listening politely. Some didn't seem to be too interested in the proceedings. After playing the footage of riots, Raskin said, “If that's not an impeachable offense, then there is no such thing.”
  • Several senators choked up while recalling the incident. Lead impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin shared an emotional story reflecting on the events on Jan 6, when he feared for the life of his daughter and son-in-law who accompanied him that day after the burial of his 26 years old son Tommy.
  • While all the leaders recounted the Capitol riots and the trauma they have been through, they exclaimed how they were scared of the threat they possessed to their life and argued they can never get desensitized to that day.
  • Former President Trump's defense lawyer Bruce Castor Jr. laid out his argument against the constitutionality of the impeachment trial. In a lengthy speech, Castor deflected the blame from Trump and said the reason for this impeachment trial is to prevent Trump from running for office again. "We are really here because the majority in the House of Representatives does not want to face Donald Trump as a political rival in the future. That's the real reason we're here, and that's why they have to get over the jurisdictional hurdle, which they can't get over," Castor said.
  • Trump's defense lawyer says impeachment is an effort "to disenfranchise 74 million-plus American voters". He argues impeaching the former president will further divide the country rather than unite them and doing so is a vicious game of power gain." At the end of the day, this is not just about Donald Trump or any individual. This is about our Constitution and abusing the impeachment power for political gain," he said.
  • The initial presentation from the defense team offered a Jekyll-and-Hyde-esque response to the impeachment charge, with Trump attorney Bruce Castor praising the managers for a presentation that was "well done" and attorney David Schoen following by slamming Democrats for trying to tear apart the country. Schoen was supposed to present first, not Castor, according to two people familiar with the plan. But Castor told the Senate that Trump's legal team "changed what we were going to do on account that we thought that the House managers' presentation was well done."
  • After the lengthy debate, the Senate voted that the trial was constitutional. The 56 to 44 vote, however, showed a little hope for the House managers to obtain the two-thirds majority which is needed for conviction. House managers will now have 16 hours over the next two days to present their case, followed by two days for Trump's lawyers.


Publish : 2021-02-10 07:49:00

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