Trump’s 2nd trial to start with fight over its legitimacy
Donald Trump’s historic second impeachment trial is an undertaking like no other in U.S. history, the defeated former president charged by the House with inciting the deadly mob attack on the U.S. Capitol to overturn the election in what prosecutors argue is the “most grievous constitutional crime.”
Trump’s lawyers insist as the Senate trial opens Tuesday that he is not guilty on the sole charge of “incitement of insurrection,” his fiery words just a figure of speech, even as he encouraged a rally crowd to “fight like hell” for his presidency. The Capitol siege on Jan. 6 stunned the world as rioters stormed the building to try to stop the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory. Five people died.
No witnesses are expected to be called, in part because the senators sworn as jurors, forced to flee for safety, will be presented with graphic videos recorded that day. Holed up at his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida, Trump has declined a request to testify.
The first president to face charges after leaving office and the first to be twice impeached for high crimes and misdemeanors while in office, Trump continues to challenge the nation’s civic norms and traditions even in defeat. Security remains extremely tight at the Capitol. While acquittal is likely, the trial will test the nation’s attitude toward his brand of presidential power, the Democrats’ resolve in pursuing him, and the loyalty of Trump’s Republican allies defending him.
“In trying to make sense of a second Trump trial, the public should keep in mind that Donald Trump was the first president ever to refuse to accept his defeat,” said Timothy Naftali, a clinical associate professor at New York University and an expert on Richard Nixon’s impeachment saga, which ended with Nixon’s resignation rather than his impeachment…..read more
Source: AP News