Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz seemed baffled by the initial opening statement offered by Bruce Castor Jr, an impeachment attorney for former President Donald Trump, before the Senate on Tuesday.
Castor’s long, rambling statement, which included at one point seemingly effusive praise of U.S. senators as “gallant” and “extraordinary,” was widely panned by journalists and politicians after what many considered a solid opening by House impeachment managers.
Asked by Newsmax TV to give his perspective during Castor’s speech, Dershowitz shook his head and said, “There is no argument.”
“I have no idea what he’s doing. I have no idea why he’s saying what he’s saying,” Dershowitz continued. “You know, he’s introducing himself: ‘I’m a nice guy. I like my senators. I know my senators. Senators are great people.’ Come on. The American people are entitled to an argument, a constitutional argument.”
“After all kinds of very strong presentations on the part of the House managers with the videotapes and an emotional speech by Congressman Raskin, a former student, you know, you get up there and you respond,” he continued. “We know that hard cases make bad law. I probably would’ve started with that. This is a hard case, an emotional case.”
“I just don’t understand it,” he said. “Maybe he’ll bring it home. But right now, it does not appear to me to be effective advocacy.”
Dershowitz, who at one point defined Castor as a “folksy lawyer,” suggested that unless the Senators “want to be buttered up,” that part of the presentation would likely be ineffective. (RELATED: ‘This Is Political Theater’: Alan Dershowitz Refuses To Defend Trump In Senate Impeachment Trial After Representing Him In First One)
With the aid of six Republicans including Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy, the Senate voted 56-44 to move forward with the trial.