WASHINGTON – The Latest on former President Donald Trump’s second Senate impeachment trial (all times local):
Senate Republicans had sharp criticism for former President Donald Trump’s lawyers after the opening of his second impeachment trial.
Many said they didn’t understand Trump’s lawyers’ arguments as they sought to persuade the Senate to dismiss the trial on constitutional grounds. Trump was impeached by the House for inciting the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol.
Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy, who voted with Democrats to move forward with the trial after voting against them in a similar vote two weeks ago, said Trump’s team did a “terrible job” and was “disorganized,” “random” and “did everything they could but to talk about the question at hand.” Maine Sen. Susan Collins, who also voted with Democrats, said she was “perplexed” by lead Trump lawyer Bruce Castor, “who did not seem to make any arguments at all, which was an unusual approach to take.”
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, one of Trump’s staunchest allies, said he didn’t think the lawyers did “the most effective job,” while praising Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin, the Democrats’ lead prosecutor, as “impressive.” Sen. John Cornyn of Texas said Castor “just rambled on and on and on.” Both still voted to dismiss the trial, along with 42 other Republican senators.
Asked for a response to the GOP criticism, Castor said, “We had a good day.” Another Trump lawyer, David Schoen, told reporters that “I always hope to improve.”