WASHINGTON, D.C. — The House impeachment managers finished their prosecution of the case against former President Donald Trump 4.5 hours early on Thursday. The impeachment managers meticulously recounted Trump’s efforts to overturn the November election and emphasized how his actions directly ignited the violent insurrection on Jan. 6.
The impeachment managers presented evidence going back to the summer before the election that showed Trump’s cultivation of the “Big Lie” — the relentless recitation and amplification of the 2020 election being rigged, stolen and illegitimately conducted. His insistence that President Joe Biden could only win if there was fraud set the stage for violence in January. As Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) described it: “Donald Trump surrendered his role as commander in chief and became the inciter in chief of a dangerous insurrection.”
The impeachment managers also showed multiple never-before-seen videos of the events on Jan. 6. The visceral footage showed senators fleeing their chambers, mobs attacking police officers and audio of terrified staffers barricaded in their offices. Each video was presented not only to show the threat the insurrection posed to democracy, but to display how Trump knowingly encouraged every step.
Next up, Trump’s legal team will present their defense. They have two days to present their case before the Senate can submit written questions.