Several left-wing figures gushed over the way lead House impeachment manager Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) presented the Democrats’ case against President Trump, describing his performance as “masterful,” “magnificent,” “exceptional,” and “inspiring.”
Most of Schiff’s arguments have existed as a rehash of the arguments made throughout the House impeachment inquiry. However, the House Intelligence Committee chairman closed the second day of opening arguments on Thursday night by appealing to the Constitution and attacking the president’s character.
“Nobody is really making the argument, ‘Donald Trump would never do such a thing!’” Schiff argued Thursday night. “Because of course we know that he would, and of course we know that he did.”
As Breitbart News reported, character attacks “would ordinarily have been barred by the rules of evidence, if the Senate were in fact a court of law”:
The Federal Rules of Evidence stipulate (Rule 404): “Evidence of a person’s character or character trait is not admissible to prove that on a particular occasion the person acted in accordance with the character or trait.”
The only exception is when a defendant brings in his or her own character — for instance, saying that he or she could not possibly have committed the crime in question because of good character. Then the prosecution can counter.
However, Chief Justice John Roberts has not enforced any of the ordinary rules of court procedure that exist to protect the rights of the accused and the impartiality of the justice system; he has little role other than to keep time.
He also attempted to appeal to the Constitution and Founding Fathers, stating that “no Constitution can protect us if right doesn’t matter anymore.”
“And you know you can’t trust this president to do what’s right for this country. You can trust he will do what’s right for Donald Trump,” he argued.
“He’ll do it now. He’s done it before. He’ll do it for the next several months. He’ll do it in the election, if he’s allowed to,” he added.
“Right matters. And the truth matters,” Schiff stated. “Otherwise we are lost.”
Several prominent figures on the left gushed over the lead impeachment manager’s performance.
“I don’t want to go to bed tonight without saying that Adam Schiff is one of the great attorneys of his generation, and his arguments this week were some of the most stirring, inspiring, ethical, admirable orations America has seen in over a quarter-century,” Newsweek columnist Seth Abramson raved:
I don’t want to go to bed tonight without saying that Adam Schiff is one of the great attorneys of his generation, and his arguments this week were some of the most stirring, inspiring, ethical, admirable orations America has seen in over a quarter-century.
I hope they matter. pic.twitter.com/jhliAFLTs9
— Seth Abramson (@SethAbramson) January 24, 2020
“We can hold out hope that Schiff’s magnificent words will resonate with Americans, if not with a majority of the Senate,” the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin said.
“Perhaps Schiff’s call to our better angels will provide the emotional lift and inspiration to banish Trump,” she wished:
We can hold out hope that Schiff’s magnificent words will resonate with Americans, if not with a majority of the Senate. Perhaps Schiff’s call to our better angels will provide the emotional lift and inspiration to banish Trump https://t.co/Q3PDQ3mcmO
— Jennifer Rubin (@JRubinBlogger) January 24, 2020
“Our country is lucky to have Adam Schiff at a time when leadership from so many other places is so lacking,” former Obama national security aide Ben Rhodes wrote:
Our country is lucky to have Adam Schiff at a time when leadership from so many other places is so lacking.
— Ben Rhodes (@brhodes) January 24, 2020
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) called Schiff’s argument “powerful” and added that House managers “have presented a compelling case, based on facts & substance”:
.@RepAdamSchiff‘s closing argument last night was powerful.
Mr. Schiff is absolutely right—right matters. The truth matters. House managers have presented a compelling case, based on facts & substance. Will 4 Republican Senators stand up for the truth & for a full & fair trial? https://t.co/xZ7P0UZHGI
— Senator Dick Durbin (@SenatorDurbin) January 24, 2020
Meanwhile, Schiff’s performance apparently brought actress Debra Messing to tears:
I am in tears. Thank you Chairman Schiff for fighting for our country.
— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) January 24, 2020
“This is brilliantly argued and so compelling,” singer John Legend wrote of Schiff’s closing statement.
“Everyone says the outcome is predetermined. But make sure your senators hear from you if you’re moved by this. Thank you, Congressman Schiff, for standing up for what’s right,” he added:
This is brilliantly argued and so compelling. Watch if you have time. Call your senators. Everyone says the outcome is predetermined. But make sure your senators hear from you if you’re moved by this. Thank you, Congressman Schiff, for standing up for what’s right. https://t.co/MOuBSCBaSE
— John Legend (@johnlegend) January 24, 2020
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 24, 2020
Every American should watch this part of Adam Schiff’s remarks last night. https://t.co/1KWpA5r367
— Evan McMullin (@EvanMcMullin) January 24, 2020
Senators will do whatever they’ll do, but Schiff’s closing will be played again and again, viewed on YouTube, shared with friends. It will speak to the American people come November 2020 & it will be a much-studied historical document. “In America, right matters.”
— Joyce Alene (@JoyceWhiteVance) January 24, 2020
“Right matters. And truth matters. Otherwise we are lost.” — @RepAdamSchiff. That final ten minutes was extraordinary. Schiff made a compelling case that leaving Trump in office endangers us all. We all know we can’t count on Trump. To do what’s right not for him but for us all.
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) January 24, 2020
Adam Schiff clearly & forcefully speaks the Truth. All the Republican Senators know it. Now they owe it to all of US and the survival of Democracy to do the right thing. Donald Trump must be removed from office.
— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) January 24, 2020
Powerful. Please watch. pic.twitter.com/XI6LYije2u
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) January 24, 2020
If American democracy survives Donald Trump my kids will someday learn in school about the closing Adam Schiff gave tonight.
— Michelle Goldberg (@michelleinbklyn) January 24, 2020
The Schiff closing tonight was exceptional and correct and got to the core of the whole thing.
— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) January 24, 2020
Schiff is a person who has risen to the occasion history has put him in. Such people are beacons for us generations after they’ve passed.
Because goodness is beyond time: it is immortal. https://t.co/sTMIpC2Zs9
— Elad Nehorai (@PopChassid) January 24, 2020
Schiff is making his mark on history. Derelict Senators are failing America, but Schiff is giving this republic the defense it deserves. https://t.co/mlIzzo8xMS
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) January 24, 2020
Rep. Schiff cuts to the heart of why Trump should be removed:
“You know you can’t trust this president to do what’s right for this country. You can trust he’ll do what’s right for Donald Trump.”
— George Conway (@gtconway3d) January 24, 2020
Powerful words from @RepAdamSchiff last night: “If right doesn’t matter, we’re lost. If the truth doesn’t matter, we’re lost. The Framers couldn’t protect us from ourselves if right and truth don’t matter. And you know that what he did was not right.” https://t.co/9AUmrqhPDR
— Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon (@RepMGS) January 24, 2020
In stirring closing speech, Schiff goes to the heart of why Trump should be removed https://t.co/Jdqv2SJkj1
— Mother Jones (@MotherJones) January 24, 2020
— Justin Amash (@justinamash) January 24, 2020
As Breitbart News reported, Schiff has largely tried to make the Democrats’ case against the president about the Russia collusion hoax, referencing “Russia,” “Russian,” or “Russians” dozens of times throughout his opening arguments:
Trump took a shot at his radical opponents on Friday — including “AOC, Omar, Cryin’ Chuck, Nervous Nancy & Shifty Schiff” — contending that they are “angry & ‘deranged’ over the fact that Republicans are up to 191 Federal Judges & Two Great New Supreme Court Justices”:
More than anything else, the Radical Left, Do Nothing Democrats, like AOC, Omar, Cryin’ Chuck, Nervous Nancy & Shifty Schiff, are angry & “deranged” over the fact that Republicans are up to 191 Federal Judges & Two Great New Supreme Court Justices. Don’t blame me, blame Obama!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 24, 2020
The Senate will reconvene for the impeachment trial at 1 p.m. ET.