I haven’t watched all of the Senate impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump, but have seen much of it. A few rhetorical questions and observations, although nothing you haven’t thought and heard:
Would the Capitol riot have occurred but for President Donald Trump’s behavior during his presidential term, culminating in his speech before the riot? I would suggest that no one honestly exerting any level of discernment could think otherwise.
Would those Republican Senators who seem overwhelmingly likely to vote to acquit Mr. Trump – to a person, almost certain to justify their votes behind a cowardly and false rationale of unconstitutionality — be voting for an impeachment conviction of former President Barack Obama if a multi-complexioned mob had sought to overturn the counting of the Electoral College ballots in January, 2017, after Mr. Obama had uttered verbatim the same speech that Mr. Trump rendered on January 6? I would suggest that only those unfortunate souls who over the years have purchased the Brooklyn Bridge could truly believe otherwise.
Will any Republican Senator that votes to acquit Mr. Trump ever thereafter be able to look a Capitol Police officer in the eye? I leave that one to you.
What the Senate trial may – may – have done, with the non-cult Trump supporters, is place a political millstone around the neck of Mr. Trump and convicted not only Mr. Trump but Republican Senators of gross dereliction of duty.
Maybe … but it takes no prescience to predict that all references to the particulars of this impeachment trial – save the fact that Mr. Trump was “exonerated” by his acquittal – will disappear from all conservative media outlets as soon as the vote is entered. Again referring to the words of Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf:
“The receptivity of the great masses is very limited, their intelligence is small, but their power of forgetting is enormous.”
Nothing I have seen in the reactions from various quarters to the evidence presented at the impeachment trial has altered my belief that a persistent paid media campaign in conservative outlets against Mr. Trump and his seditious enablers may be vital to prevent the resurrection of his and their political standing with non-cult Trump voters. Hopefully, organizations with the will, creativity and financial means will undertake it.
There is one area in which I agree with Mr. Trump’s Republican defenders: assuming that we are about to see an acquittal, it will, now, be time to look beyond this shameful exhibition of despicable constitutional malfeasance and manifest display of American political instability, and address COVID and the multitude of domestic and foreign challenges facing us. We have no choice.