The Republican Impeachment Lawyer Is Bombing His Television Debut

We look forward to our television-minded president’s meltdown over Steve Castor’s brutal performance.

Alex Brandon/AP

Steve Castor, the staff lawyer Republicans picked to question witnesses in the impeachment inquiry, is emerging as one of the star players in the impeachment saga—and for all the wrong reasons. 

Republicans are eager to create made-for-TV moments aimed at painting the probe’s witnesses—many of whom offered highly damaging allegations against President Donald Trump—as part of a political plot to take down the president. They’d also like to convince the public that Trump’s efforts to coerce Ukraine into interfering in the 2020 election were perfectly just.

So far, Castor has not carried out these missions successfully. He appeared to bungle his questioning repeatedly: He falsely suggested that the Justice Department’s probe into the 2016 election included Ukraine, had to learn about routine State Department protocol on the spot, and received deadpanned looks from the witnesses, both of whom are seasoned, well-respected diplomats.

Take a look at the bipartisan reception to his debut:

Did Castor also say the quiet part out loud? It sure seems like it!

George Kent and Bill Taylor, the first two witnesses to appear before the public hearings, appeared consistently confused by Castor’s line of questioning. Which puts me, a very confused viewer, in good company. 

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THE BIG QUESTION...

as we head into 2020 is whether politics and media will be a billionaires’ game, or a playing field where the rest of us have a shot.

Please read our annual column about the state of journalism and Mother Jones' plans for the year ahead, and help us build an alternative to oligarchy by supporting our people-powered journalism with a year-end gift today.

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