WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – The House impeachment managers started making their case against former President Donald Trump Wednesday with never-before-seen footage of the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol.
The presentation included surveillance video and audio of law enforcement communications to demonstrate the threat the insurrectionists posed to everyone in the complex on Jan. 6.
The impeachment managers hope the footage will convince at least 17 Republicans to convict Trump, but that continues to be an uphill battle.
“Those videos have nothing to do with the constitutionality of this process,” Sen. Bill Hagerty, R-TN, said.
Hagerty is watching the evidence presented as an impartial juror in Trump’s Senate impeachment trial but said it should not be happening.
“It’s a piece of political theater that’s really aimed at humiliating the president and the 74 million people who voted for him,” Hagerty said. “How do you remove a private citizen who’s in Mar-a-Lago right now, not the White House?”
Hagerty voted again Tuesday that the trial is unconstitutional, while fellow Republican, Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-LA, said the impeachment managers proved otherwise.
“They made the constitutional case, and Trump’s attorneys did not refute it,” Cassidy said.
However, Cassidy will wait on an ultimate verdict until he hears the evidence presented from both sides.
“You’ve got to argue why the president was innocent or why the president was guilty,” he said. “That’ll be the issue before us.”
The impeachment managers maintain Trump was solely responsible for the insurrection.
“Donald Trump surrendered his role as commander in chief and became the inciter in chief,” said Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-MD.
Raskin said Trump encouraged his supporters to head to the Capitol and did nothing to stop the deadly attack aimed at overturning his loss to President Joe Biden.
“To us, it may have felt like chaos and madness, but there was method in the madness that day,” Raskin said.
Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-TX, argued Trump laid the foundation long before Jan. 6.
“He truly made his base believe that the only way he could lose was if the election was rigged,” Castro said.
Trump’s attorneys make their case later this week.