Wednesday marked the first of two days that House Democrats presented evidence attempting to tie President Donald Trump to the violence at the US Capitol on January 6 on day No. 2 of Trump’s impeachment trial in the US Senate.
Democrats will present the second half of their arguments starting at noon ET Thursday.
For nearly seven hours on Thursday, the House impeachment managers featured clips of the violence from inside the US Capitol on Jan. 6, some of which had never been seen before by the public. The impeachment managers then interlaced those videos with a timeline of Trump’s words and actions from that day
The most notable moments of Wednesday’s trial featured security camera videos captured inside of the Capitol showing the moment the insurrectionists stormed the Capitol amid the counting of the Electoral College. Among the footage, Sen. Mitt Romney could be seen being rushed by Officer Eugene Goodman to turn the other way, away from the rioters. There was also video of Vice President Mike Pence and his family being whisked away by security as rioters commandeered the building.
House Democrats then showed footage and played audio clips of Capitol Police attempting to hold off the rioters while getting members of Congress and vice president to safety. More than 140 Capitol police officers were injured during the melee, including Officer Brian Sicknick, who died from injuries sustained during the insurrection.
After a dinner recess, house managers then presented a timeline of Trump’s actions and comments during the riots. The house impeachment managers showed tweets of Trump condemning Pence for not doing more to intervene during the counting of the Electoral College. Those tweets came at roughly the same time Pence was being moved to a secure location as crowds chanted for the death of Pence.
The theme Democrats attempted to present was that Trump did nothing to prevent or stop the violence at the Capitol.
"What's also clear is what Donald Trump, our commander-in-chief did in those initial hours to protect us. Nothing, not a thing,” said Rep. David Cicilline, serving as a House impeachment manager for the Democrats.
While some Republicans found the Democrats’ evidence compelling, whether 17 of them will vote to convict Trump still seems questionable. But one Republican who expressed disgust over Trump’s actions was Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.
“I think that, that the House managers are making a very strong case for a timeline that laid out very clearly the words that were used, when he used them, how he used them to, to really build the, the anger, the violence that we saw here in this Capitol,” Murkowski told reporters.
After Democrats conclude their presentation on Thursday, Trump's defense will begin its presentation on Friday.