Trump Impeachment II: Insurrection Boogaloo

There are some general threads around impeachment going, but it seems to me we might need a “follow-along” thread about the trial itself, which starts in the Senate tomorrow 2/9/2021. Let this serve as a place for news about the cases being presented by prosecutors and defense, reaction, etc. Here’s some news from the NY Times about Trump’s defense case, including a link to the full brief (possibly paywalled):

Donald J. Trump’s lawyers on Monday denounced the impeachment case against him as partisan “political theater,” arguing on the eve of the Senate’s trial that he bore no responsibility for the deadly assault on the Capitol and that trying a former president at all was unconstitutional.

In a 78-page brief submitted to the Senate, the lawyers asserted that Mr. Trump’s speech just before the attack “did not direct anyone to commit unlawful actions,” and that he deserved no blame for the conduct of a “small group of criminals” who rioted at the Capitol on Jan 6. after he had urged them to “fight like hell” against his election loss. They also insisted that the Senate “lacks jurisdiction” to try him at all because he was now a private citizen, calling such an effort “patently ridiculous.”

The arguments constituted Mr. Trump’s first sustained defense since the violence of Jan. 6. They concluded with the lawyers urging senators to promptly dismiss the single, bipartisan “incitement of insurrection” charge when the trial convened Tuesday.

Don’t mind me, I just wanted to get settled in with my popcorn and listen to the discussion. He won’t be convicted, but hopefully some good will come of this anyway.

We know he won’t be convicted but still we need to do this. Let the Republicans go on record that inciting insurrection and attempting to murder the vice president and Speaker is okey-dokey by them. The defense doesn’t even need to mount a case, they could have someone as comically inept as Guiliani stand up and say nothing more than “2022 Primaries” and that will make the Republicans shit their collective pants.

I wonder if a secret ballot would result in a different result.

I think a secret ballot would go about 85-15 to convict.

Yeah, we do need a follow-along thread, so thanks @ShadowFacts for starting this.

It’s so weird to check into the board throughout the day and find NO new posts on trump, his crimes, his tweets, his hair, his fat, his golf game. I love not having any idea what he’s doing especially not knowing when he’s using the toidy. But it’s weird after the constant barrage of news and not-news over the last four years.

So the impeachment trial will give us something to detox with for (I hope only) a few days.

IANAL, but this seems like an utterly incompetent defence. If this was decided by an impartial jury it would be a slam dunk.

Since it will be decided by a jury containing several Trump supporters, who actually approve of the insurrection, it might not succeed. Unless Trump is arrested and faces the start of a criminal case. Then they might distance themselves.

What are the chances of the vote being secret?


Surprisingly (to me), the Senate could in fact decree that the impeachment trial vote must be secret, if they wanted to, by simple majority. But yeah, I don’t see 51 Senators deciding that that’s what they want.

But also note Article I, Section 5, Clause 3:

Each House shall keep a Journal of its Proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such Parts as may in their Judgment require Secrecy; and the Yeas and Nays of the Members of either House on any question shall, at the desire of one fifth of those present, be entered on the Journal.

So, 20 Senators can force even a “secret” vote to be recorded in the Senate Journal. But, the Senate can decide that “such Part…may in their Judgment require Secrecy”, and not publish it. But, a later Senate can choose to publish it anyway.


(My emphasis.) I hope the House managers are getting advice from prosecutors who’ve successfully put away mob bosses. The 'he didn’t actually say “kill the guy”’ defense has a long history of failure, and it would be nice to see it fail this time, too.

Who will rid me of this troublesome priest?

If so, I can certainly see 51 Senators going for it: nearly all of them Democrats.

The chances of conviction go way way up, IMO, if the vote can be secret.

Thanks for the thread. I look forward to learning whose opponents I should donate to in the next election.

The only thing you will get Republicans to say ‘on the record’ is that the impeachment of a private citizen is unconstitutional, whether you think it is or not. They aten’t going to defend Trump, because they have a much easier ‘out’ that won’t hurt them with the Republican base while not justifying anything Trump did.

And then, like the hypocrites all politicians are, they’ll use the precedent to go after Dems they don’t like once they are inevitably back in power.

And, they are going to use this trial to drag out every crazy thing a Democrat has said that could be remotely characterized as incitement to violence.

In the meantime, the trial will just convince the crazies on the right that they were right, and make things worse.

The Democrats want Senators in purple states to go on record. Getting Senators to say that they support Trumps attempts to overturn Democracy is a more powerful weapon than convicting Trump via impeachment.

Trump was not a “private citizen” at the time of his (second) impeachment; he was still the POTUS. If what you meant is that Republican politicians are claiming it’s unconstitutional to hold Trump’s Senate trial after the end of his POTUS term, they are getting some pushback on that even from fellow Republicans.

It is indeed a pity that so many US conservatives these days are so unprincipled and/or delusional that they will try to excuse or condone or dismissively “bothsides” the incitement of an insurrection on the part of a sitting President, for the sake of their own political advantage.

Still, their conduct can’t be allowed to determine the response of the sane and principled among us. Trump was legitimately impeached for his actions, and he’s going to be legitimately tried to hold him accountable for his actions, as per the opinions of constitutional law experts of all political stripes.

There’s no point wasting any effort on trying to figure out a Democratic approach to this issue that will deter Republicans in general from behaving like deranged lying shitweasels about it. We have learned that nothing that Democrats do or don’t do will deter Republicans in general from behaving like deranged lying shitweasels. Behaving like deranged lying shitweasels is the closest thing to an effective platform the GOP has left.

I understand kickoff is 1 PM Eastern time? Or should I say tee time?

An excellent choice of metaphors.