Former House Democratic Counselor Daniel Goldman criticized former President Donald Trump’s impeachment defense team on Friday, calling their arguments “pathetic,” and claimed that an “objective” trial would have a “30-second guilty verdict.”
Goldman appeared on MSNBC’s special coverage of Trump’s Senate impeachment trial where he gave his analysis on the defense’s presentations. (RELATED: MSNBC Reporter Claims Some Republicans May Vote To Convict Trump Because They Can’t ‘Stomach’ That He ‘Left Them For Dead’ In Capitol Riot)
“There is a defense here that they touched upon but didn’t really hit hard, which would require Donald Trump to take some acceptance of responsibility in order to get off of these charges,” Goldman began. “That would be something along the lines of emphasizing his video on January 7th, where he condemned the rioters, and basically saying, I did not intend for them to take my words this way. That was not at all what I wanted. I feel terrible that this happened. This is not American. This is not good. But I certainly did not incite it.”
“So it’s a little bit of accepting a little responsibility, but not enough to be convicted. But there is no way that Donald Trump would ever do that based on what we’ve watched for the last four years,” he continued.
Trump’s impeachment defense team began their arguments on Friday, but only used a few of the 16 hours allotted to them.
“I do feel some empathy for the defense lawyers, who are probably hamstrung a little bit by their client. And, they can’t put forward the best arguments that he wants to get him off,” Goldman said. “They are lucky because his supporters for the most part are only going to watch the right-wing ecosphere and they will package these videos and some of these other statements and turn this into a partisan witch hunt … and everyone will feel like, oh the Democrats are just out for retribution and revenge … And that will be enough for the senators to probably, to acquit.”
The defense team argued against the constitutionality of the trial on the grounds that Trump is no longer in office, and attempted to refute arguments put forward by the House impeachment managers with additional video clips and social media posts from the riot. These clips were not included in the prosecution’s presentations.
The defense also played a video montage of Democrats, including some of the impeachment managers, previously using inciteful language before telling them to “stop the hypocrisy.”
“It is a real shame that this is what we just saw, two and a half hours of what was really a pathetic defense,” Goldman continued. “And that really did not address the significant evidence that was put forward by the House managers. If this were any kind of independent, objective trial, it would be a 30-second guilty verdict. But that’s not where we live right now. And it’s a shame.”