Trump impeachment lawyer says would be 'idiotic,' 'insane' to rehash election fraud claims

By Jan Wolfe (Reuters) - A lawyer for Donald Trump on Wednesday said it would be 'idiotic' and 'insane' to dispute the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election during his Senate impeachment trial, adding that the former U.S. president has not pressured him to make those arguments.

Reuters February 04, 2021 00:12:26 IST
Trump impeachment lawyer says would be 'idiotic,' 'insane' to rehash election fraud claims

Trump impeachment lawyer says would be idiotic insane to rehash election fraud claims

By Jan Wolfe

(Reuters) - A lawyer for Donald Trump on Wednesday said it would be "idiotic" and "insane" to dispute the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election during his Senate impeachment trial, adding that the former U.S. president has not pressured him to make those arguments.

"Injecting that into a case that is already a winner would be idiotic," said Bruce L. Castor Jr, a recent addition to Trump's legal team, in an interview with Reuters.

"It would be insane to do that," Castor said.

"Nobody has pressured me to make that defense," Castor added, saying Trump was happy with a brief filed by Castor and his co-counsel David Schoen on Tuesday.

The two defense lawyers are preparing for trial before the U.S. Senate beginning Feb. 9. The chamber will consider an article of impeachment passed by the House of Representatives charging Trump with inciting the deadly Jan. 6 storming of the Capitol by his followers.

In their response to the charge on Tuesday, they argued that the Senate lacked authority to hold an impeachment trial for a president who has left office. Castor told Reuters that would be the primary defense argument.

Forty-five Senate Republicans backed a failed effort on Jan. 26 to halt Trump’s impeachment trial for that very reason, in a show of party unity that some cited as a clear sign he will not be convicted.

Democratic lawmakers said in a brief on Tuesday that Trump pointed a mob "like a loaded cannon" at Congress and should be barred from holding public office in the future.

Trump named Castor and Schoen as his lead counsel on Sunday after abruptly parting ways with a five-lawyer team he brought on to represent him.

A source familiar with the discussions said Trump had disagreed with his previous lead counsel, Butch Bowers, over strategy ahead of the trial. The president is still contending that he was the victim of mass election fraud in the Nov. 3 election won by President Joe Biden.

Castor said he did not plan to call defense witnesses unless the House Democrats prosecuting the trial call their own witnesses. He declined to say who Trump would call in that scenario.

Some congressional Republicans have said Trump should avoid rehashing his baseless theories about election fraud.

"I think it would be a disservice to the president’s own defense to get bogged down in things that really aren’t before the Senate," Sen. John Cornyn, a Republican from Texas, told reporters on Monday.

Castor is a former Pennsylvania district attorney known for his decision not to prosecute entertainer Bill Cosby in 2005 after a woman accused Cosby of sexual assault. In 2017, Castor sued Cosby’s accuser in the case for defamation, claiming she destroyed his political career in retaliation.

(Reporting by Jan Wolfe, additional reporting by Steve Holland; Editing by Scott Malone and Alistair Bell)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Subscribe to Moneycontrol Pro at ₹499 for the first year. Use code PRO499. Limited period offer. *T&C apply

also read

Thyssenkrupp ends talks with UK's Liberty on steel unit sale
Business

Thyssenkrupp ends talks with UK's Liberty on steel unit sale

By Christoph Steitz, Tom Käckenhoff and Arno Schuetze FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German conglomerate Thyssenkrupp ended talks to sell its steel division to Britain's Liberty Steel due to differences over value, the latest setback in efforts to consolidate the European sector. Liberty Steel, led by commodities tycoon Sanjeev Gupta, last month submitted a firmed-up non-binding bid for Thyssenkrupp's steel unit, Europe's second biggest in terms of sales, which sources said included commitments to protect jobs and sites.

Factbox: Stonks in Washington: Deciphering Reddit's WallStreetBets lingo
Business

Factbox: Stonks in Washington: Deciphering Reddit's WallStreetBets lingo

(Reuters) - Reddit trading lingo may filter in to Washington on Thursday when top hedge fund managers, the head of Robinhood and Roaring Kitty himself are set to give testimony before U.S. House of Representatives lawmakers.

Brent gives up gains after rising above $65 on Texas freeze
Business

Brent gives up gains after rising above $65 on Texas freeze

By Stephanie Kelly NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices steadied on Thursday, with Brent edging back from a 13-month high, after a sharp drop in U.S. crude inventories supported prices, while buying spurred by a cold snap in the largest U.S. energy-producing state petered out.