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"It's About the Future": Democrats Say Conviction of Remorseless Trump Necessary to Avoid Insurrection Efforts to Come

"It's about making sure that no future official, no future president, does what President Trump did," said Rep. Ted Lieu.

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) speaks during the third day of former President Donald Trump's Senate impeachment trial. (Photo: PBS/YouTube screen grab)

House Impeachment manager Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) speaks during the Senate impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump on February 11, 2021. (Photo: PBS/YouTube screen grab) 

The House impeachment managers prosecuting Donald Trump in the United States Senate rested their case on Thursday, warning senators of the potential dangers of acquitting the former president, and urging them to use "common sense" while deliberating his fate.

"Senators, America, we need to exercise our common sense about what happened," said lead impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), who read from Thomas Paine's 1776 revolutionary pamphlet (pdf). "Let's not get caught up in a lot of outlandish lawyers' theories here. Exercise your common sense about what just took place in our country."

On January 13, House lawmakers impeached Trump for inciting the deadly January 6 mob attack on the U.S. Capitol. The former president had incessantly repeated lies about the 2020 presidential election being "stolen," exhorting his die-hard followers to march on the Capitol and "fight like hell" as lawmakers gathered inside to certify President Joe Biden's Electoral College victory.

"If you don't find this a high crime and misdemeanor today, you have set a new terrible standard for presidential misconduct in the United States of America," Raksin argued Thursday.

Impeachment manager Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) used part of his allotted time Thursday to rebut a core claim of Trump attorney Bruce Castor, who on Tuesday asserted that "we are really here because the majority of the House of Representatives does not want to face Donald Trump as a political rival in the future."

"I'm not afraid Donald Trump is going to run again," Lieu retorted. "I'm afraid he's going to run again and lose. Because he's going to do this again."

"Impeachment, conviction, and disqualification is not just about the past," said Lieu. "It's about the future. It's about making sure that no future official, no future president, does the exact thing President Trump does."

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