The defense attorneys for Donald Trump have wrapped up their presentation in the former president’s impeachment trial.
Lawyers argued for three hours Friday that Trump didn’t incite the Jan. 6 rally crowd to riot at the U.S. Capitol and that his words were merely figures of speech. They say the case against Trump was a political witch hunt by Democrats and was not valid because he is no longer in office.
Their truncated defense barely used the full time allotted, 16 hours over two days. Many senators minds appear already made up.
Trump is accused of incitement of insurrection in the mob siege at the Capitol. Five people died. Senators will next be able to ask the lawyers questions when the trial resumes.
The strategy from Donald Trump lawyers is to concede that violence at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 was every bit as traumatic, unacceptable and illegal as Democrats say. But his team disputes that Trump had anything to do with it. The goal is to blunt the impact of the House Democrats’ visceral case and quickly pivot to what the defense lawyers see as the more winnable issue of the trial: whether Trump incited the deadly riot.