Former President Trump has parted ways with his lead impeachment lawyers just over a week before his Senate trial is set to begin, two people familiar with the situation said Saturday. Butch Bowers and Deborah Barbier, both South Carolina lawyers, are no longer with Trump’s defense team….Greg Harris and Johnny Gasser, two former federal prosecutors from South Carolina, are also off the team, one of the people said.
According to a different person with knowledge of the legal hires, Bowers and Barbier left the team because Trump wanted them to use a defense that relied on allegations of election fraud, and the lawyers were not willing to do so….Trump has struggled to find attorneys willing to defend him after becoming the first president in history to be impeached twice….After numerous attorneys who defended him previously declined to take on the case, Trump was introduced to Bowers by one of his closest allies in the Senate, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham.
Jokes aside, this shows that Trump understands what Bowers didn’t: this isn’t a trial, it’s a TV show. Trump knows that his control over the Republican Party is still strong enough that he faces no chance of conviction, which means that legal arguments are unnecessary. Instead, he wants this to be a nationally televised opportunity for him to persuade the public that the 2020 election was teeming with Democratic fraud that cheated him out of reelection. He will, of course, be aided in this via coverage from Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, and all the rest of the right-wing media empire. I predict high ratings.