By Duncan Smith
We don’t have any first-person insight into the early days of former President Donald Trump’s administration.
No one who works here was part of the former president’s inner circle, much less his administration.
But it’s becoming pretty clear why adviser Steve Bannon was among the first casualties: Whatever he told the president to do on the 2016 campaign trail, his advice to Trump since then is somewhat less effective.
As the former president gets ready for a second impeachment trial based on a second bogus set of circumstances and allegations, Bannon wants Trump to double down on what got him his second impeachment in the first place.
Democrats (and, of course, some RINOs — you know who they are by now) have accused Trump of “inciting an insurrection” at the Capitol Building Jan. 6 as Congress met in joint session to county the electoral ballots.
But they specifically blame his claims of a stolen election on the incitement.
None of that BS is true, mind you; Democrats have objected to balloting for the past three GOP victories and no one minded then.
Also, Democrats encouraged last year’s voluminous rioting, destruction and death.
But for some reason, Bannon wants Trump to double down on what got him into a situation where he is being unconstitutionally tried by the Senate.
The Washington Examiner has more:
Advisers to former President Donald Trump are split on devising an impeachment defense, with Steve Bannon among those urging him to turn the Senate trial into a political bear fight by claiming once again that the election was stolen, according to a source familiar with discussions.
Trump's legal team is scrambling to devise a strategy after he in recent days replaced five lawyers who were reluctant to relitigate what they saw as flimsy allegations of voter fraud.
While the Republican Party prefers arguing that the impeachment of a former president is unconstitutional, his allies fear Trump is gambling on a made-for-television, scorched-earth defense that risks defeat.
His advisers are fighting about whether to mount a conventional legal defense or use the Senate as a political platform.
'Bannon is the one wanting to tie it to a relitigation of the election,' said the source.
Now look, the president’s lawyers are thinking of making a First Amendment case as well as argue that there is nothing in the Constitution that permits Congress to convict a president a) who is no longer in office; and b) without the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court presiding as he is constitutionally mandated to do (if the president were still in office).
But trying to out-man card angry Democrats with new allegations of an old (so far disproven) conspiracy is a dog fight the president doesn’t want or need because he will need as many Republicans as he can get to acquit him.
And the GOP support will collapse if his lawyers trot out this argument: “WE WUZ ROBBED!”
Steve, if you’re reading this, sit down. Shut up. Be still. And thank your lucky stars Trump pardoned you.
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