So strong is the case against Trump that Republicans like Senator John Cornyn look like idiot with the only defense that can be built.
Senator Cornyn (R-TX) tweeted:
Can the Senate condemn a speech protected by the 1st amendment? Perhaps because impeachment is a political, not a strictly legal, process. (See Federalist 65).
Should it? That is the question that should concern every patriotic American.
– Senator John Cornyn (@JohnCornyn) February 6, 2021
Cornyn’s tweets raise two issues that have already been resolved. A civil servant does not have the same initial adjustment rights as a private individual. Trump used his power and the platform of the presidency to instigate a mob to attack the Capitol. He committed a criminal offense.
Trump also committed a crime calling for violence. If he had made the same statements two weeks later as a private individual with the same results, he would have been charged with a crime.
The first change is not a criminal waiver. Just as a person cannot shout a bomb in an airport or shoot a bomb in a movie theater, a president cannot tell a mob to attack the Capitol and then claim the statements are protected language.
The case against Trump is open and closed. Trump and his campaign helped pay for and coordinate the rally that led to the attack. Trump spoke at the rally and urged his supporters to go to the Capitol.
Any senator who tries to defend Trump on the grounds of free speech deliberately does not know the constitution or does not belong in an electoral office.
For more discussions on this story, join our Rachel Maddow and MSNBC groups.
Follow and like PoliticusUSA on Facebook
Mr. Easley is the Founder / Senior Editor, White House Press Pool, and a Congressional Correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a bachelor’s degree in political science. His thesis focused on public order with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and professional memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Political Science Association