Donald Trump’s Attorney Claims to Be a Victim of Impeachment Trial
If you thought that ex-President Donald Trump’s impeachment defense team could not possibly get any nuttier, then you probably missed the speech given by Michael van der Veen – whose specialty is personal injury cases – before the United States Senate on Friday morning.
Van der Veen was verklempt because of a letter signed by dozens of law professors urging the Senate to convict Trump of inciting an insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th.
Van der Veen claimed that the letter was targeting him personally and that it posed a threat to his career because it rightly panned the ridiculousness of Trump’s defense:
Are we to ignore the words of James Wilson? The House managers surely want you to. The House managers have made several references to this letter signed by 140 partisan law professors, calling Mr. Trump’s First Amendment defense, ‘legally frivolous.’ This is really an outrageous attempt to intimidate Mr. Trump’s lawyers.
Whenever a lawyer advances a truly frivolous argument, they may violate professional, ethical rules and could be subject to discipline! This letter is a direct threat to my law license, my career, and my family’s financial well-being. These law professors should be ashamed of themselves and so should the house managers!
How dare you? Do you really hate Donald Trump so much that you’re willing to destroy good, hard-working people’s lives, people that are only doing their jobs, and frankly, as counsel for an accused fulfilling a constitutional role? It’s astounding, really. I’m a citizen, not a politician! I know these First Amendment arguments are not anywhere close to frivolous, they are completely meritorious!
Van der Veen, apparently, does not understand that freedom of speech does not mean freedom from the consequences of what was said, such as yelling ‘bomb’ on an airplane, ‘fire’ in a crowded theater. The First Amendment to the Constitution simply says that Congress “shall make no law… abridging the freedom of speech… or of the right of the people to peacefully assemble.”
While anyone is free to bluster, lie, and even spread propaganda, Trump leading a violent mob of white supremacist terrorists to attack the seat of the federal government to overturn a democratic election that resulted in five deaths and damage to the Capitol is not protected speech.
Van der Veen was also peeved because the letter preempted Trump’s trial. He claimed that Founding Father James Wilson, one of the authors of the Constitution, “supports his position” that a president can lead an armed revolt against the government, a crime known as sedition:
Interestingly, the law professors’ letter was issued on February 5th, three days before we even filed our legal brief in this matter, and they ignored landmark bedrock Supreme Court cases directly addressing this issue. In our brief, we have a direct quote from James Wilson – the Founding Father supporting our position – the quote was directly quoted in the Founding Fathers’ legal papers on the subject. He was the primary drafter of the Constitution. He taught the new Constitution to President [George] Washington. He said, ‘so long as acts of elected officials [like Mr. Trump] are constitutionally protected, he should not be impeached.’
We have landmark Supreme Court decisions – Wood and Bonds, which I’ll explain in details supporting our position – all of this the House managers and the partisan law professors completely and misleadingly ignored.
Frivolous? Hardly. The letter is a bully tactic, and think the evidence is the House managers know they have a problem with a First Amendment defense on the merits and are resorting to such tactics.
Nice try, but the 14th Amendment to the Constitution explicitly forbids someone like Trump from ever holding public office again:
No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.
If Van der Veen is concerned about his reputation, perhaps he should reconsider what he is doing – and pray that deadbeat Donald actually pays the bill.
Watch below via Raw Story: