Democratic impeachment managers warned the Senate Thursday that convicting Donald Trump isn’t nearly blocking him from the White House ― it’s additionally in regards to the prospect of him operating and dropping once more.
Trump has already proven he’s greater than prepared to lie about voter fraud and a stolen election, the Democrats mentioned throughout his second impeachment trial. His supporters have proven a willingness to commit violence in his identify, and even in his assertion supposedly condemning the assault on the Capitol, Trump informed the perpetrators he beloved them.
“I’m not afraid of Donald Trump running again in four years,” Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) mentioned. “I’m afraid he’s going to run again and lose, because he can do this again.”
Trump has indicated that he doesn’t intend to depart politics. He nonetheless hasn’t recanted his declare that he ought to have received the 2020 election, and when he left Washington on Inauguration Day, he said he would be “back in some form.”
As far as voters go, even after the rebel, 40% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents said Trump should run for president again in 2024.
Most Republican senators are inclined to let him off the hook for his position within the Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol, insisting that the impeachment trial is occurring too late as a result of he’s not president. And and not using a conviction, Trump will likely be eligible to run once more and simply incite violence once more.
“Impeachment is not to punish but to prevent,” Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) mentioned Thursday. “We’re not here to punish Donald Trump; we’re here to prevent the seeds of hatred from bearing any more fruit.”
Democrats didn’t base their case solely on the siege of the Capitol, which Trump incited by sowing doubt within the election outcome for months after which urging his supporters to “fight like hell” as lawmakers ready to certify that outcome. They additionally pointed to examples of Trump encouraging his supporters to get bodily way back to his first presidential marketing campaign.
In 2016, he informed a crowd to “knock the crap out of” protesters, including that he would “pay for the legal fees, I promise.”
In 2017, in reference to a white nationalist rally that left one counter-demonstrator lifeless, he mentioned there have been “very fine people on both sides.”
In 2018, Trump praised now-Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte (R) for body-slamming a reporter, saying, “Any guy that can do a body slam — he’s my kind of guy.”
In 2019, Trump made a joke out of the suggestion from one in all his rallygoers that the easiest way to cease immigrants from crossing the border was to shoot them, laughing and smiling on the proposal and saying that, “Only in the Panhandle can you get away with that statement.”
In May 2020, Trump retweeted a video of a Republican county commissioner in New Mexico saying “the only good Democrat is a dead Democrat.”
Just days earlier than the election final 12 months, a caravan of Trump supporters tried to run a bus for now-President Joe Biden’s marketing campaign off the street in Texas. Trump approvingly retweeted a video of the stunt and jokingly informed a rally that his supporters have been “protecting” the Biden bus, “because they’re nice.”
As one of many Democratic impeachment managers, Del. Stacey Plaskett (D-V.I.), mentioned Wednesday, Trump retweeted a video of the confrontation, attaching the phrases “I LOVE TEXAS.”
“He fanned the flame of violence,” Plaskett mentioned. “And it worked.”
But maybe the clearest precursor to the violence on the U.S. Capitol was the siege of the Michigan state Capitol and the foiled plot to kidnap Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer over coronavirus restrictions the state had imposed on companies.
President Trump tweeted “LIBERATE MICHIGAN” in April, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) famous Thursday, and inside two weeks, armed militiamen marched on the state Capitol.
“They stormed the building,” Raskin mentioned. “Trump’s marching orders were followed by aggressive action on the ground.”
“The siege on the Michigan state home was successfully a state-level gown rehearsal for the seizure of the U.S. Capitol that Trump incited on January 6.
Rep. Jamie Raskin
Democrats then confirmed video of the lads shouting at Michigan police and calling for Whitmer to be locked up. At least one man who screamed at police in Michigan later stormed the U.S. Capitol.
Trump continued to blast Whitmer in his public statements. The militiamen stormed the state Capitol once more. In October, the FBI arrested 13 men for plotting to kidnap her and launch a civil warfare.
“The siege at the Michigan state house was effectively a state-level dress rehearsal for the seizure of the U.S. Capitol that Trump incited on January 6,” Raskin mentioned. “It was a preview of the coming insurrection.”
Trump’s impeachment protection attorneys, for his or her half, instructed that convicting Trump is what would incite violence. Trump lawyer David Schoen mentioned Tuesday that Democrats knew “the so-called trial will tear the country in half, leaving tens of millions of Americans feeling left out of the nation’s agenda, as dictated by one political party that now holds the power in the White House and in our national legislature.”
“This trial will tear this country apart, perhaps like we’ve only seen once before in our history,” Schoen mentioned.
Democrats as an alternative identified that regulation enforcement specialists count on the assault on the Capitol itself to be a beacon for violence for years.
“Unless we take action, the violence is only just beginning,” DeGette mentioned.
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