After securing a vote on Saturday to call witnesses (55-45) in the second impeachment trial of former president Donald Trump, the House managers executed a "head-spinning" U-turn, backing down and agreeing with Republicans to not have any witness testimony.
Instead, the gutless Democrats were reportedly suddenly concerned that having witnesses (which they had just finished fighting for!) would take too much time. So, in the end, despite all their talk of the threat to the republic, their main goal was to get this whole thing over with as soon as possible.
The New York Times:
Minutes after the verdict was announced, Mr. Trump sent out a statement thanking his legal team and decrying, as he did for most of his presidency, the "witch hunt" he says is being waged upon him by his enemies.Trump's "pro bono" lawyers continued their emulation of their profoundly stupid client to the bitter end, mispronouncing words (Philly-adelphia) and exhibiting no understanding of how Senate trials work (their threat to issue subpoenas was met by loud laughter from (reportedly) both sides) or the difference between a Senate impeachment trial and a civil criminal trial.
"It is a sad commentary on our times that one political party in America is given a free pass to denigrate the rule of law, defame law enforcement, cheer mobs, excuse rioters, and transform justice into a tool of political vengeance, and persecute, blacklist, cancel and suppress all people and viewpoints with whom or which they disagree," he wrote, echoing the final arguments of his lawyers in the Senate on Saturday.
"I always have, and always will, be a champion for the unwavering rule of law, the heroes of law enforcement, and the right of Americans to peacefully and honorably debate the issues of the day without malice and without hate."
He also suggested that the Democrats' attempt to end his political career had also failed, telling his supporters, "our historic, patriotic and beautiful movement to Make America Great Again has only just begun."
Raskin points out their conflicting statements on insurrection pic.twitter.com/NbtrpKyU0O— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) February 13, 2021
van der Veen explains that if House managers want witnesses, then "I'm going to need at least, over 100 depositions"— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 13, 2021
"Do not handcuff me by limiting the number of witnesses I can have," he angrily says. "We should close this case out today." pic.twitter.com/3vcjmDG4Vz
A moment of levity as Trump’s lawyer says something so ridiculous that they U.S. Senate starts laughing at him.— Rep. Don Beyer (@RepDonBeyer) February 13, 2021
“I don’t know why you’re laughing”
Folks, the laughter here sure sounds like it’s coming from both sides of that Chamber. https://t.co/3fUnY8PsS2
He can't subpoena anyone, the Senate issues subpoenas and sets the grounds for the depositions. That's why they were all laughing.— Lady Dimitrescu's #1 simp (@Anfini1) February 13, 2021
After the Acquittal, McConnell (R-Asshat) Repeated The January-Trial Lie
McConnell condemns Trump’s actions despite voting to acquit him pic.twitter.com/VkkhFzzSCz— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) February 13, 2021
McConnell: If President Trump were still in office, I would have carefully considered whether the House Managers proved their specific charge pic.twitter.com/zCoNGfQKxQ— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) February 13, 2021
McConnell: Donald Trump was the president when the House voted though not when the House chose to deliver the papers pic.twitter.com/8yoKqzYW8u— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) February 13, 2021
“Anyone decries his awful behavior is accused of insulting millions of voters. That’s an absurd deflection” pic.twitter.com/KtHpImU31V— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) February 13, 2021
Trump: “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose any voters.”— emptywheel (@emptywheel) February 13, 2021
GOP Senate: "Trump could stand in the White House and target his VP for assassination and he'll only lose 4 Republicans."
Here we go: Lead Impeachment Manager Rep. Jamie Raskin says they want to subpoena Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA) about the McCarthy-Trump phone call. pic.twitter.com/GX9Xbl5yPw— The Recount (@therecount) February 13, 2021
Here's Sen. Lindsey Graham changing his vote to AYE.— The Recount (@therecount) February 13, 2021
The five Republicans now who voted AYE on witnesses:
• Susan Collins
• Lisa Murkowski
• Mitt Romney
• Ben Sasse
• Lindsey Graham
There will be witnesses. pic.twitter.com/1L0KskJ2m6
55-45, the Senate will proceed with witnesses in the second impeachment trial of Donald Trump.
— The Recount (@therecount) February 13, 2021
In a surprise twist on Saturday, the House managers made an abrupt demand to hear from witnesses who could testify to what Mr. Trump was doing and saying during the rampage. The Senate voted to allow it, but the prospect threatened to prolong the trial by days or weeks without changing the outcome, and in a head-spinning move, the prosecutors quickly dropped it.
After a flurry of closed-door haggling with Republicans, they agreed with Mr. Trump’s lawyers to admit as evidence a written statement by a Republican congresswoman, Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington, who has said she was told that the former president sided with the mob as rioters were attacking the Capitol.
And @brianschatz says it's his "understanding" that managers and Trump lawyers have agreed to admit JHB statement and close.— Mike DeBonis (@mikedebonis) February 13, 2021
"my view is that this is between the counsel and if they have an agreement that we should ratify it"
For as many videos as we saw of the word "fight" yesterday, Democrats are really bad at fighting.— JLC (@jamielynncrofts) February 13, 2021
Raskin is now reading a statement from Jaime Herrera Beutler pic.twitter.com/DFysYcqWqo— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 13, 2021
JHB’s statement is public and already permissible in the impeachment record. The proposed stipulation to admit the account into the record and simply move on is nonsensical and a profound waste of time (and vote). Call live witnesses. @StaceyPlaskett @RepRaskin— Subtle Thoughts (@__IpsoFacto__) February 13, 2021
Raskin should honestly save our Saturday afternoon and just end his speech right now. We've been subjected to enough rhetoric this week. Nothing he says at this point matters.— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 13, 2021
This is a bullshit move. There is no reason not to use the power of a bi-partisan majority to lay this shit on the table for all to see.— Denny Wheeling (@DennyWheeling) February 13, 2021
I didn’t think there would be a way to “both sides” this trial. I was wrong- if Dems accept this shit, BOTH sides have betrayed America
Wining a key vote to *call witnesses* -- and then not actually calling any witnesses -- would mark quite the reversal by House Managers at the most pivotal point in the trial of Donald Trump.— Ari Melber (@AriMelber) February 13, 2021
Senate Democrats are really underestimating the American public’s inherent need and want for justice.— YS (@NYinLA2121) February 13, 2021
It’s what Americans are taught when given their Apple Pie and Baseball at birth.
Trump's lawyers spent a good chunk of the trial arguing that news reports are unreliable, so now Democrats are going to cave just so a news report can be entered into the record? Whew.— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 13, 2021
Here's Trump's lawyer attacking the reliability of news reports after Democrats used their leverage earlier today just so they could introduce a news report into the record pic.twitter.com/rXa04gbPw3— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 13, 2021
The families of the dead deserve more than a fucking statement.— ⚓ Harlequin 🇺🇲 Forest ⚓ (@HollyCB2112) February 13, 2021
It’s like McConnell is still majority leader.— iTellStories (@LaJuliciousOne) February 13, 2021
In 2022, when the Dems lose the house and senate and are utterly confused as to why, they have something to look back on. There will be a few other reasons but this is one.— Dan Mayberry (@drm437) February 13, 2021
The continued gutless actions by Dems are not surprising..— Boggsy OlllllllO 🇺🇲🇲🇽 (@dmboggs74) February 13, 2021
This was completely expected. Its what they do. Every. Damn. Time.