(Tea Party PAC) – Accusations that former President Donald Trump incited the January 6th riots on Capitol Hill are the basis of a second impeachment trial that began earlier this week.
The riots were supposedly perpetrated by activists in Trump gear some two miles away from where the then-president was giving a speech at a Stop the Steal rally organized to protest the certification of the 2020 electors.
On the fourth day of the impeachment trial, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) submitted a question asking if language used in 2020 by Vice President Kamala Harris regarding Black Lives Matter protests would be considered incitement given the “proposed standard” for incitement by the impeachment managers.
The protests – sparked by the death of George Floyd by police officers in May – were largely peaceful but ended up turning into destructive riots throughout much of the country, in many instances. These riots included vandalism, looting, fires, injuries, and even death over the course of several months in 2020.
Ted Cruz began his question, “While violent riots were raging, Kamala Harris said on national TV, ‘They’re not gonna let up, and they should not.’” This quote came from viral comments made by then-Sen. Harris (D-CA) on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert last June, referencing the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests.
Cruz’s question continued, “And she also raised money to bail out violent rioters,” referencing the Minnesota Freedom Fund (MFF) Harris urged her Facebook and Twitter followers to support in June 2020.
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) June 1, 2020
The MFF is an organization seeking to combat cash bail by posting bail for individuals detained. A massive amount of donations were made amid last year’s protests and the mission was promoted as arrests were made of those who went beyond protesting to all out violating the law.
As Cruz continued his question he added, “Using the manager’s proposed standard, is there any coherent way for Donald Trump’s words to be incitement and Kamala Harris’s words not to be incitement?”
A response came from Lead House impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) as he said he was “not familiar” with the quote from Harris that Cruz had referenced.
This was immediately responded to by Trump attorney Michael T. van der Veek as he rejected the notion during his own response to Cruz, stating that his team had already given video — that was played three times that day — of Harris’s quote.
Raskin went on to say that despite not recognizing the quote, he finds it “absolutely unimaginable that Vice President Harris would ever incite violence or encourage or promote violence.”
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) asked a related question on behalf of himself, Cruz, Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KS), and Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-ND), “Does a politician raising bail for rioters encourage more rioting?” A representative from Trump’s legal team replied, “Yes.”
TRUMP TRIAL: Sens. Lindsey Graham, Ted Cruz, Roger Marshall, and Kevin Cramer, send this question to the desk: “Does a politician raising bail for rioters encourage more rioting?” #TrumpImpeachment pic.twitter.com/0u0xMzUQrW
— Forbes (@Forbes) February 12, 2021
Great question, Sen. Graham, great question.
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