The House of Representatives has, for a second time, engaged in a lawless and irrational impeachment of President Trump. This snap impeachment, after only two hours of debate, without any investigations, hearings or any due process, where the President’s counsel would be allowed to present evidence and cross-examine witnesses, is as lawless as the invasion of the Capitol, albeit less violent.
It is based on the lie that President Trump incited the criminal invasion of the Capitol.
The Washington Post reported that the FBI was aware of plans to invade the Capitol before January 6th. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund said the rioters, “came with riot helmets, gas masks, shields, pepper spray, fireworks, climbing gear — climbing gear! — explosives, metal pipes, baseball bats."
Obviously, they planned an attack long before Trump spoke.
The rioters could not have been “incited” by the President because they probably heard little or none of his speech. The President’s speech lasted from 12:00 p.m. to 1:11 p.m. According to Chief Sund, the assault on Capitol police started at 12:40 p.m. According to Bing, under normal conditions, it takes 32 minutes to walk from the Ellipse to the Capitol. This means the rioters had to leave no later than 12:08 p.m. On January 6th, however, due to crowds, it took 45 minutes to make that walk. This means the rioters had to leave the Ellipse, if they were ever there, by 11:55 p.m, before the President’s speech started.
Even if they had heard the speech, President Trump never called for force, violence, or overthrow of government. He made only the following comments on the Capitol:
"We’re going walk down to the Capitol, and we’re going to cheer on our brave senators, and congressmen and women. We’re probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them because you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.
"We have come to demand that Congress do the right thing and only count the electors who have been lawfully slated, lawfully slated. I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard."
To impeach a President based on his asking his supporters for a peaceful march to the Capitol in order to “make your voices heard,” violates the First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and assembly.
The President’s critics have ignored his call for peaceful demonstration. They have quoted, out of context, his statement made not two minutes before the end of his speech, when no rioters could have been there to hear them, that, “And we fight. We fight like Hell and if you don’t fight like Hell, you’re not going to have a country.”
In fact, just as Obama stated that Democrats should bring a gun to a knife fight, the President repeatedly used “fight” to refer to “fighting” in the legislatures, courts, elections and in the media. He referred to Jim Jordan fighting in Congress. Did he mean that Jordan was punching his colleagues? Did Obama mean that Democrats should engage in knife fights with Republicans but use a gun to win?
As for the President controlling the rioters, the Washington Post reported that, “’4:30: Outside the east side of the Capitol, a man with a megaphone announced to a crowd of hundreds: 'Hey, everyone, Donald Trump says he wants everyone to go home.' In response, some in the crowd booed loudly.
One man shouted back: 'Shut the f--- up! We’re not going to bend a knee, motherf-----!’”
The impeachment is a lawless and irrational abuse of power.