Trump's Impeachment Lawyers Try To Deconstruct the Link Between What He Said and What His Followers Did

No amount of parsing can obscure his responsibility for the deadly attack on the Capitol.


The House members who are prosecuting Donald Trump on the charge that he incited last month's Capitol riot opened their case yesterday with a dramatic video that intersperses scenes of the violence with the former president's words that day. It clearly shows that Trump supporters inspired by his oft-repeated fantasy of a stolen presidential election broke down security barriers, attacked police officers, smashed windows and doors, stormed the building, and forced the members of Congress who were about to ratify Joe Biden's victory to run for their lives instead.

Since the Senate voted yesterday to proceed with the impeachment trial, rejecting the argument that it has no authority to try a former president, the task for Trump's lawyers is to deconstruct the connection between what he said and what his followers did. Judging from their trial memorandum, they will attempt to do that by arguing that Trump never advocated violence, that some of his supporters planned to attack the Capitol even before his inflammatory pre-riot speech, and that he cannot reasonably be held responsible for the behavior of individuals who interpreted his demand that they "fight like hell" to "stop the steal" in a more literal way than he intended.

That strategy would make sense if Trump faced a criminal charge of incitement to riot or a lawsuit seeking compensation for the deaths, injuries, and property damage caused by the attack. But it fundamentally misconstrues the basis of his impeachment, which alleges that he abused his power, violated his oath to uphold the Constitution, neglected his duties as president, and undermined democracy by using extralegal means to overturn the election results. To defend against those charges, it is not enough to argue that Trump could not be held accountable for the riot in a criminal case or civil lawsuit.

"The Federal Bureau of Investigation has confirmed that the breach at the Capitol was planned several days in advance of the rally, and therefore had nothing to do with the President's speech on January 6th at the Ellipse," Trump's lawyers say. The fact that some of Trump's supporters talked about attacking the Capitol before they arrived in Washington, of course, does not mean that none of the rioters were moved by his fiery rhetoric that day. More to the point, Trump had been persistently promoting his delusion that he actually won the election by a landslide for months, and the protesters came to D.C. at his behest to stop Biden from taking office. He invented the grievance that motivated the rioters, including those who planned ahead as well as those who acted in the heat of the moment.

As Trump urged his followers to "walk down to the Capitol," the House managers' video shows, Trump supporters reacted with cries of "Take the Capitol!" While Trump was still speaking, a group of his supporters peeled away from the crowd to begin the march. When they arrived at the Capitol, they started dismantling the security barriers around it, brawling with police officers, and heading up the steps.

Quoting from a Gateway Pundit post, Trump's lawyers note that it takes about half an hour to walk the 1.6 miles between Ellipse Park, the site of the "Save America" rally, and the Capitol. Trump began speaking just before noon and continued until 1:12 p.m. Yet protesters "had already breached Capitol Grounds a mile away 19 minutes prior to the end of President Trump's speech."

That is not exactly an airtight defense, given that video shows protesters at the rally heading for the Capitol during Trump's speech. Here are some of the things that Trump said toward the beginning of his address, allowing plenty of time for protesters moved by his words to arrive at the Capitol and begin the assault:

Joe Biden cannot be allowed to take office because he stole the election through massive, unprecedented voting fraud.

"We won this election, and we won it by a landslide."

"They rigged an election. They rigged it like they've never rigged an election before."

"Our country has had enough. We will not take it anymore….We will stop the steal."

"All of us here today do not want to see our election victory stolen by emboldened radical left Democrats, which is what they're doing, and stolen by the fake news media. That's what they've done and what they're doing. We will never give up. We will never concede."

"It's a disgrace. There's never been anything like that. You could take third world countries….Their elections are more honest than what we've been going through in this country. It's a disgrace. It's a disgrace."

"As you know, the media has constantly asserted the outrageous lie that there was no evidence of widespread fraud….We will not be intimidated into accepting the hoaxes and the lies that we've been forced to believe over the past several weeks. We've amassed overwhelming evidence about a fake election."

"Democrats attempted the most brazen and outrageous election theft. And there's never been anything like this, so pure theft in American history. Everybody knows it."

"Our election was so corrupt that in the history of this country, we've never seen anything like it….No third world countries would even attempt to do what we caught them doing."

Vice President Mike Pence has the power to stop Biden from taking office by rejecting his electoral votes.

"If Mike Pence does the right thing, we win the election….All Vice President Pence has to do is send it back to the states to recertify, and we become president."

"Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us. And if he doesn't, that will be a sad day for our country, because you're sworn to uphold our Constitution."

If Pence fails to do "the right thing," the result will be intolerable.

"We're going to have somebody in there that should not be in there, and our country will be destroyed. And we're not going to stand for that."

"[We'll be] stuck with a president who lost the election by a lot. And we have to live with that for four more years. We're just not going to let that happen."

"You will have a president who lost all of these states, or you will have a president, to put it another way, who was voted on by a bunch of stupid people who lost all of these states. You will have an illegitimate president."

If we "show strength," we can stop Biden from taking office.

"It is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy. And after this, we're going to walk down, and I'll be there with you."

"We're going to walk down to the Capitol, and we're going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women. And we're probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them. Because you'll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength and you have to be strong. We have come to demand that Congress do the right thing and only count the electors who have been lawfully slated….I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard today."

Although Trump said his supporters should protest "peacefully," it was predictable that some of them would go further than that, especially after Pence publicly stated that he did not have the authority to do what Trump wanted. (The video shows that Pence, whom Trump slammed on Twitter after the protest turned violent, was a primary target of the rioters' ire.) Trump sent his followers on a doomed mission to stop an "egregious assault on our democracy," ostensibly by cheering legislators who challenged Biden's electoral votes and jeering those who declined to support those challenges. There was never any chance that Congress actually would overturn Biden's victory, and Trump surely knew that.

"If you don't fight like hell, you're not going to have a country anymore," Trump said about an hour into his speech. By that point, the first wave of rioters was already on its way. But he had delivered essentially the same message over and over again—not just that day but in the two months following the election.

"The president asked people to come and show their support," Christopher Grider, a Texas winery owner who faces federal charges in connection with the riot, told a Waco TV station that evening. "I feel like it's the least that we can do." The Houston Chronicle notes that Grider says "he never planned to be at the Capitol, much less take part in an insurrection." Grider's lawyer argues that he got swept up by a "mob mentality" that Trump encouraged: "He would never have anticipated finding himself in the situation, but for the president and the rally and the way everything went down."

Grider obviously has an interest in deflecting blame for his own actions that day, and it should go without saying that Trump's rhetoric cannot excuse another person's criminal acts. But Trump's speech was grossly irresponsible precisely because of its predictable impact on passionate, impressionable supporters like Grider, and his remarks that day cannot be divorced from his obstinate refusal to accept that he lost the election, which went far beyond exercising his right to challenge the results in court.

"The President of the United States summoned this mob, assembled the mob, and lit the flame of this attack," Rep. Liz Cheney (R–Wyo.), the third-ranking Republican in the House, said before she joined nine other Republicans in supporting Trump's impeachment. "Everything that followed was his doing. None of this would have happened without the President. The President could have immediately and forcefully intervened to stop the violence. He did not. There has never been a greater betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution." Sen. Mitch McConnell (R–Ky.), then the Senate majority leader, agreed that "the mob was fed lies" and "provoked by the president."

According to Trump's lawyers, by contrast, all he did was exercise his First Amendment right to express "a difference of political opinion…on an issue of voting irregularity." The question is not whether Trump had a First Amendment right to say whatever he wanted about the election, however outlandish and palpably untrue. It is whether Congress can hold him accountable for exercising that right in such a manifestly reckless way.

NEXT: Have Kids? Mitt Romney and Joe Biden Want the Government To Pay You Thousands Every Year

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  1. No matter how you read what Trump said, it doesn’t mean what you want. Only through TDS lenses.

    1. If Trump didn’t know that his speech would incite anti-Trump, Antifa protestors who had plotted the attack the day before, then he’s too dumb to be president. Sure, he TOLD them to be peaceful and sure they were 30 minutes walk away from the Capitol, but that’s not a defense to incitement. The only known defense to incitement is inciting a LIBERAL crowd to do liberal things. Duh! Liberty is not something we libertarians care about; we only care about promoting the liberal agenda. Go Oligarchs!

      1. Then you’re up for impeaching Kamala Harris?

        1. it’s all Calvinball

          you are pointing at the rulebook while they tie you to a stake and use the pages to light a bonfire

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      2. You don’t know what incitement means. It doesn’t mean “said stuff that made some people mad, who then went on to commit crimes.”
        It means a direct, specific call to imminent violence. Nothing Trump said meets the legal definition of incitement.

        1. Then it is up to his B- legal team to show that.

          It really does not matter. The Dems do not have the votes.

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        2. No, it doesn’t mean what you keep saying you think it means.

          18 U.S. Code § 2102(b) As used in this chapter, the term “to incite a riot”, or “to organize, promote, encourage, participate in, or carry on a riot”, includes, but is not limited to, urging or instigating other persons to riot, but shall not be deemed to mean the mere oral or written (1) advocacy of ideas or (2) expression of belief, not involving advocacy of any act or acts of violence or assertion of the rightness of, or the right to commit, any such act or acts.

          1. Sounds like you just confirmed that Cloudbuster was right, for all practical purposes.

            Trump didn’t organize a riot, he wasn’t even the organizer of the event, just a guest speaker.

            He didn’t participate in or carry on a riot, he got nowhere near the Capitol building.

            That limits us to promote or encourage, but as you can see from the latter part of the code, everything he actually said in the speech is precluded from legally being considered promoting or encouraging a riot, because he never told anybody to engage in any act of violence. On the contrary, he expressly told them to be peaceful.

            1. Yep, it’s nice when my opponents make my arguments for me.

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      3. Do you think the political class in the know about the pre-planned riot informed the White House, or did they want a riot and a reason to falsely discredit and impeach Trump again?

        AFAIK, many of the agitators were anti-Trump false flag operations planned by the Resistance to pin the riot on Trump. Sullum can claim they are Trump supporters, but if you’re trying to discredit Trump I’d expect the troublemakers to be carrying Trump flags and wearing MAGA hats. I expect we’ll get the evidence, just like for the election fraud that was dismissed for numerous reasons other than it wasn’t fraud.

        Read the Antrim Country Forensics Audit of their Dominion voting systems, and tell me how what happened there happened. They counted the electronic votes 3 times and got 3 different totals far apart. Meanwhile audit logs were missing suggesting hackers (insiders with the password?) covering their tracks.

        1. Give it a rest, dum-dum. Antrim County is a Republican County in rural Michigan. All of the election officers there are Republicans. One of the staff members made a dumb mistake. That’s all there is to it in reality, unlike in your fevered imaginary world where Republicans in a Republican County rigged the election against the Republican. That sounds so stupid that only you could believe it.

          1. If votes could be changed between candidates by accident they for sure could be changed on purpose. That’s a problem don’t you think?

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          2. voting machines were designed to eliminate human error. If a voting machine needs a human to intercede to keep it from flipping 7000 votes who in the hell programed it to do that and what good is it? When voting machines are certified to be used in elections they are check and then isolated from being accessed. Was the Antrim county machine accessed after being certified or did the certification allow it to flip votes? That would be like buying a car that when put in drive went in reverse unless you took other actions. Would you buy one?

        2. All of that will come out in the lawsuits.

          A plaintiff law firm would be salivating at the prospects. Fox News has deep pockets and will bring out their own wolves. Giuliani is partner in a very big law firm. I don’t know about Sydney. She is on her own.

          The damages are real and the statements made against the plaintiff are untrue. Those are easy. Proving defamation is not easy.

          1. Ok goebbels

      4. Being dumb has never been a disqualification for becoming President or any other elected office. You can’t be held responsible for incitement if that was not your intent. You can’t be held responsible if others choose to misinterpret your words. You can be held responsible for bad judgment or reckless language.

    2. Under Brandenburg v. Ohio, even “advocacy of the use of force or of law violation” can’t be punished unless it “is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action.” Saying things that foreseeably move some audience members to act illegally isn’t enough. Speaking recklessly isn’t enough. The Court was well aware that speech supporting many movements—left, right, or otherwise—that merely moves the majority to political action may also lead a minority of the movement to rioting or worse. It deliberately created a speech-protective test that was very hard to satisfy.
      Reason – volokh – Eugene Volokh | 1.7.2021 11:09 AM

      Could Reason make up their mind and take an actual stand on this issue?

      1. Volokh is not Reason. Reason is just hosting Volokh.

        1. I’ll take the smartest law professor alive (probably against interest) over a journalist who has repeatedly revealed his inability to separate his political bias from his assertions.

          1. Yes.

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          2. Good thread Liberty Lover, newshuts and Marshal!

            All I can add, is that It’s good Reason is hosting Volokh, considering his is the libertarian position. Meanwhile Sullum’s TDS seems to have affected his ability to see clearly, and that he (in a very unlibertarian manner) is supporting ending freedom of speech whenever that speech affects the politicians in power and says there are crooks and cheaters in the government who should be investigated along with examining all the election procedures and equipment used in elections, in 6 counties controlled by Democrats in swing states.

            Sullum is supporting the authoritarians due to his TDS. He’s been successfully gaslighted by the political class IMHO.

          3. Yeah – Sullum is no Eugene Volokh. I’m inclined to listen to the prestigious and accomplished First Amendment law professor than this doofus journalist.

        2. That’s just a silly distinction.

            1. Lol you got banned

      2. Why are you citing law?

        “To defend against those charges, it is not enough to argue that Trump could not be held accountable for the riot in a criminal case or civil lawsuit.”

        Sullum admits to and endorses exactly what we are witnessing — namely, a completely lawless and arbitrary political trial of a private citizen.

        That is all that this is. No basis in criminal law. No basis in civil law. No basis in any law. We are operating in a post-legal world where anything goes.

        This is the world Sullum is shilling so hard for. And, when they inevitably arrest him (as they will ultimately arrest all the useful idiots), we will all point and laugh.

        1. Sullum proudly promotes the banana Republic.

        2. It’s an impeachment. It’s a political act. It’s for political crimes. It’s for conduct unbecoming a president. It’s for whatever a majority in the House says it’s for, as we learned during the Clinton years.

          If trying to install yourself dictator with the help of a violent mob isn’t an impeachable act, then that bit of the constitution has proved to be utterly useless.

          1. “It’s for political crimes.”

            Your existence is a political crime and you will be dealt with. It can be no other way.

            Fascist fucks like you always get the first bullet. Always.

            We will all point and laugh when the time comes.

            1. I think your fascist detector needs a tune up.

              1. Tell me all about political crimes again, you fascist cunt. And then kill yourself and spare us all the trouble.

            2. “you will be dealt with” — so, you are publicly threatening Tony.

              1. You got banned lololo

              2. WK – do you really not understand the difference between a warning and a threat?

                To help: “You will be dealt with” isn’t “I’m on my way over to deal with you”

          2. “It’s for political crimes”
            Oh? What political crimes are those?

            “It’s for conduct unbecoming a president”
            Like tapping journalists phones, ordering the directors of the CIA and FBI to spy on the opposition party, and selling political influence?
            Or are you talking about mean tweets?

            1. Those weren’t political crimes! They LITERALLY saved the Republic from LITERALLY Hitler.

            2. I don’t understand why the events of January 6 don’t make you think all that surveillance and suspicion was absolutely justified.

              He literally tried to destroy the United States. Why shouldn’t he have been watched? Why shouldn’t he be in prison?

              1. He LITERALLY tried to destroy the United States by making a speech. A few hundred doofuses with no plan LITERALLY tried to destroy the United States by breaking into the capitol, taking selfies, and then just…leaving. You are insufferably stupid.

                1. Chanting “hang Mike Pence.” Hunting for Pelosi and AOC. Killing cops with Blue Lives Matter flags.

                  Sure. They were just taking selfies.

                  It’s on video. They were a murderous mob, worked into a rage by their demented leader and lied to for months about an election.

                  1. MURDEROUS MOB!!!

                    god damn you fucking people are hilarious

                  2. Hunting without weapons? Leaving after 30 minutes? Hanging from the rafters is a strange hunting move. So is waiving to cameras.

                    Do you need a fainting couch?

                    1. Some of the rioters were armed. They killed a police officer.

                    2. lolol you got banned

                    3. lol – no protestors wee armed and no police officer was killed by any weapon brought by any protestor.

                  3. LMAO

                    AOC, is that you?

                  4. How many cops were killed and by what means?

                    There were at most two murders and one was committed by police.

                2. They killed a police officer.

                  1. No, they didn’t. The officer’s cause of death has not been released, but it has come out that he was not beaten to death. The only person killed was Ms Ashli.

                    1. yeah, lying like that is what got WK banned originally

                  2. The only think that died that day was reason and logic. As evidence, you are exhibit A.

                  3. Have you stopped touching children yet?

                3. The United States government is incredibly pathetic and weak if it can be “taken over” by a few hundred nutcases. North Korea and others must be so pissed they didn’t think of it themselves.

              2. I don’t understand why the events of January 6 don’t make you think all that surveillance and suspicion was absolutely justified.

                What good did it do?

                1. We’ll know better than to listen to Republican whining next time.

              3. Use of the term literally by illiterates is quite literally annoying

                1. If I were being figurative I would have said that his disgusting supporters rubbed the constitution up and down their unshowered asscracks, and I’m supposed to feel what about them? As enraged as you do about a 5% income tax hike, perhaps?

                  1. Well look who suddenly started revering the constitution!
                    It’s quite the bizarro world we’re living in…

                    1. I don’t revere anything. I signed a contract. The constitution is why I have to pay taxes. In return I get to vote. These retards wanted to steal that from me. They are murderers and thieves and thugs. Do I look like someone who just lets inbred sheepfuckers steal my shit?

              4. lol

                I don’t understand why the events of January 6 don’t make you think all that surveillance and suspicion was absolutely justified.

                That’s great FBI work – watching him in 2016 for something that happened in 2021. But you go further of course because you’re trying as hard as possible to make parodying you impossible:

                He literally tried to destroy the United States.

                Too funny – seriously that is hilariously ridiculous. Keep up the good work. Nothing disproves your points more than your points.

                1. I’m saying he’s a goddamn traitor. We knew it at the time. Hence the surveillance.

                  The coup attempt was merely him coming to fruition. We put surveillance on threats to the country because they are threats.

                  1. How did we know he was a traitor?

                    1. His every word and action?

                      Don’t you think we could have simply not elected the guy suspected of being under blackmail by the Russian oligarchy? There are like hundreds of millions of other people to choose from.

                  2. You’re a special kind of stupid, faggot.

                  3. We put surveillance on threats to the country because they are threats.

                    lol – and I’m saying, dolt, that there’s a limit on resources and if you were an FBI agent following someone for 4 years and nothing ever happened they’d tell you to find other things to focus on or find a new job.

          3. It’s for whatever a majority in the House says it’s for, as we learned during the Clinton years.

            Clinton committed perjury. I heard that’s a crime.

            1. Give me a fucking break.

              1. It’s a political crime!

              2. He lost his law license for it – are you saying perjury isn’t a crime?

                1. I’m saying it was just the beginning of the great multi-decade ratfucking of America by Republicans.

                  What should surprise you is how little they ever managed to turn up about the Clintons despite decades of exhaustive research.

                  Turns out evil cunts breed fatter, oranger evil cunts.

                  1. What should surprise you is how little they ever managed to turn up about the Clintons despite decades of exhaustive research.

                    The exact same thing can be said about Trump – after hundreds of millions of dollars spent by the FBI, CIA, NSA, NY State, IRS, etc, etc, etc, they’ve found nothing.

                    I dare say none of us could go through such scrutiny and have nothing found.

                    1. They found so much nothing his second impeachment trial is currently ongoing.

                  2. How little?

                    Securities Fraud, Real Estate Fraud, Mail Fraud, Legal Fraud, Witness Imtimidation, Rape, Misusuing FBI files for blackmail, selling pardons for sex, selling satellite/nuke missile tech for campaign contributions, influence peddling, tax fraud thru bogus charities, Im just getting warmed up

          4. I like how when liberals do something they can just call it a political act and everyone thinks that was the original intention of the constitutional clause.

            1. Your brain would be much better ordered if you consumed news from places that reported facts instead of sucked Trump dick 24/7.

              Y’all need to grow the fuck up. Tired of your whining about things that aren’t real. You’ve stupided yourselves into losing elections.


                Get the fuck over yourself you pathetically hysterical joke.

                1. Literally tried to overturn the results of an election.

                  Get the fuck over yourself, you fucking seditious traitor.

                  1. you fucking seditious traitor

                    ^ Totally not a Nazi.

                  2. when laughing at you makes one a Nazi lololol

                  3. “Literally tried to overturn the results of an election.”

                    But enough about you and Russian collusion for 4 years.

                2. If there are no elections, there is no constitution and there are no presidents. Trump was going home a civilian one way or another, though, what with the fact that he attacked the country with no army but some unarmed hillbilly Nazis.

              2. Awww, did my pointing out you’re an idiot hurt your feelings?

              3. Political crimes! Codified nowhere, standardized nowhere, existing everywhere.

                You are a fascist cunt and you will be disposed like one — that is, by a noose woven from the hair of the giant government balls you so eagerly gargle.

              4. lol – I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried…

                Tired of your whining about things that aren’t real.

                The only one whiling about unreal things is you with posts arguing things like:

                He literally tried to destroy the United States.

                Keep up the good work.

                1. He literally did.

                  1. *citation needed

                  2. Only in your fantasies.

              5. Like the trumpers you’d be well served with your own advice, you come here and act like Democrats are better than republicans when they’re both worthless pieces of shit looking for more power and control over you. You’re too fucking dense to understand that because of some misguided, empathetic response clouding your judgement. Empathy is not logic, it is the opposite of it.

            2. Criminal violations were never a requirement for someone be impeached, no matter how much you Trumpistas want to make it so.

              1. lol you got banned for lying about the protesters killing a cop lololl

              2. Criminal violations were never a requirement for someone be impeached….

                Agreed, except the House sent articles of impeachment to the Senate stating Trump incited an insurrection. Given up til now there’s never been a political definition of this, leaning on the legal definition is all we have.

        3. It’s a bill of attainder, which is expressly forbidden by the Constitution.

          I am constantly blown away by the mental gymnastics of so-called libertarians.

          Meanwhile, there were no impeachment inquiry hearings in the House. Too many inconvenient exculpatory facts might have emerged if they’d had an opening act to this circus.

          1) the previous day, the FBI and NYPD warned Capitol Police there was an assault on the Capitol building planned.

          2) the people who breached the barricades had been at the Capitol all morning and didn’t hear Trump’s speech.

          3) Trump called for peaceful protest (something the Democrats omitted from their very flashy montage).

          4) several people arrested were not Trump supporters.

          Interesting questions that would demand answers in an actual impeachment inquiry:

          1) how many of those who illegally entered the building were actual Trump supporters?

          2) Capitol Police were warned in advance, yet they had few officers on duty and none were in riot gear. They could have requested support in advance from other federal LEOs or the National Guard but didn’t. Why?

          3) why did Capitol police stand by as people walked in, not even telling them they weren’t allowed to be in the building?

          4) who stood to gain by interrupting the first of six planned objections and debates about election irregularities with a violent riot that would almost certainly (and did) prevent any further objections?

          This isn’t rocket surgery, people. The people who gained from this were not Trump and his supporters. It was Democrats, and the executive branches of the states under contest.

          Added bonus, the Democrats get to try to impeach Trump and prevent him from ever running for office again. Maybe even revoke his Secret Service detail, making him a prime target for getting mugged twice in the back.

          1. They were all Trump supporters. They were there to cancel the electoral college vote for him. You’d think it was bad if you had a modicum of objectivity instead of tribal lust for the alpha mango.

            1. Which changes nothing about it being a Bill of Attainder

            2. All you have to do is look at the map tracking their cell phones. The mob went directly from Trump’s propaganda film and speech to the Capitol. As instructed by their leader. On video.

              This denial and gaslighting is disgusting. The man is a traitor and he is supported by a party of traitors.

              1. Turn off CNN stupid.

              2. And arrived after everyone left the Capitol… LOL

                God damn son. Stop clowning yourself.

                The riot was over before the people at the speech made it over.

              3. “The mob went directly from Trump’s propaganda film and speech to the Capitol.”

                This sounds like a partial transcript of a propaganda film ….

              4. lol – traitor… you should stop using that work since it’s obvious you have zero clue what it means.

                Or continue using it – just know the more you use it the worse your point looks.

            3. No. there was Antifa on camera in in numerous photos, stupid.

        4. This is not a criminal trial.

          1. lol you got banned for lying about the protesters killing a cop lololl

          2. This is not a criminal trial.

            Then stop using legal words such as (non-exhaustive list): incitement, sedition, insurrection, traitor.

      3. 1. *Reason* doesn’t really have stands – there’s a lot of editorial independence for their writers.

        2. They mostly have taken a stand – when Trump does it it’s illegal.

      4. Sullum loves slurping DNC cock. He’s not a libertarian.

      5. You left out the relevant part of Volokh’s s article.

        “The problem here is that it’s Trump’s job to prevent and stop rioting, especially rioting against federal institutions. He’s supposed to prevent and stop such behavior even when it’s promoted by total strangers to him. He has a special responsibility to prevent and stop such behavior by people who are on his side, since those are the ones whom he can most effectively try to calm even when they’re already in a rioting mood.

        He most certainly isn’t supposed to say things—even constitutionally protected things—that are pretty likely to cause harms of the sort that we hired him to stop. The incitement test, which applies equally to all speakers, doesn’t capture this factor, nor should it. This factor is all about the special responsibilities of government officials (Presidents, governors, mayors, police chiefs, legislators, and the like). Such officials are supposed to be politically savvy enough to know what’s likely to produce (even contrary to their intentions) criminal conduct, and are supposed to organize their speech and action in a way that minimizes this, rather than making it especially likely.

        Trump’s failure was a failure not as a speaker, of the sort that strips speakers of First Amendment protection. It was a failure, a massive and unjustifiable failure, as a public servant.” Reason – volokh – Eugene Volokh | 1.7.2021 11:09 AM

        1. ““The problem here is that it’s Trump’s job to prevent and stop rioting, especially rioting against federal institutions. He’s supposed to prevent and stop such behavior even when it’s promoted by total strangers to him. He has a special responsibility to prevent and stop such behavior by people who are on his side, since those are the ones whom he can most effectively try to calm even when they’re already in a rioting mood.

          He most certainly isn’t supposed to say things—even constitutionally protected things—that are pretty likely to cause harms of the sort that we hired him to stop”

          Lolwut? This is fucking retarded.

        2. Haha. So he was responsible for soothing the deplorables?

          You people are hilarious. Totes feelz.

      6. They are not deciding criminal charges. They are deciding whether to bar Trump from future Federal office.

        1. lololollol you got banned for lying about the protesters killing a cop lololl

        2. I don’t see why they stop there. They may as well just draw up a list of people the voters are not allowed to elect. In fact, it would be more efficient to draw up a list of those people voters ARE allowed to elect.

      7. You do know this is not a criminal trial, Right?
        You keep refering the “courts”. This is not a court and no one has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt anything, it simple up the Senate if they agree with the house.

        But since we are in a time when real evidence is well, passe, Man gives heated speech, some in audience at least partially follow what man said and start a riot etc. etc. Are you saying that there is zero causual relationship? Or are you unsure?

        If the latter, consider the words in the speech are directed at self proclaimed patriots (presumably ready to give all for their country) and tell them the end of their country is near unless they put a stop to the proceedings at the Capital.
        Keep in mind that tRump has achieved mythical status with his followers. Assuming all was voluntary, does Jim Jones or David Koresh(sp?) have any culpability?

        1. “Trump has achieved mythical status with his followers.”

          Haha. You probably know a lot about blind loyalty, but maybe the pathetic antics of “resist” for 4 years animated these people. They learned from it, and returned in kind.

          Awwww, you mad, bro? Haha.

        2. Sorry, but words from an idiot compelled to write tRump are words I will safely and consistently ignore.

    3. Trump has mind control powers. Who thought libertarianism would devolve into not making people responsible for their own actions but agree with blaming actions on others. Sullum did everything but use the word dog whistle.

      1. Jacob P. Sullum, professional gaslighter. At your service.

    4. Absolutely correct! Anybody with two or more connected, functioning brain cells understands that there is a vast divide between calling for your unarmed, and happily enthusiastic team to ‘fight like hell’ which every coach since time immemorial has said and telling a group of armed and angry militants to ‘kill ’em all’, ‘fry ’em like bacon’, ‘burn it all down’; which is what various leaders of BLM/ANTIFA demonstrations have been doing regularly since May. The former is a call for peaceful protest against perceived injustice. The latter is a call for violent overthrow of civil society. President Trump did not and never has called for the violent overthrow of our civil society. Never.

      1. Nice try, but no.
        Given the fact that many tRumptards still believe that voting machine in Georgia shifted votes even though the ballots were counted by hand twice, I would have to demand proof that some of tRump’s followers have the required 2 brains cells.
        So your saying tRump is absolved of guilt in part because his audience was unarmed (and he knew it), and I say, tRump bears some guilt because he should have know that some (most?) of his audience is stupid.

        1. Stopped reading at tRumptards

          Grow up if you want to make discussions with adults.

    5. The act for which he deserves to be barred from future office is not the speech, it is assembling the mob down the street from the Capitol on the day of the electoral college vote.

      Second most important are the lies he spewed for two months after the election, as well as his demonization of Pence and others.

      The words he said on the day of the insurrection are the least of his actions.

      1. ahahahahah you got banned

        ahahahah for lying about the protesters killing a cop lolol

        1. “about the [riotors] killing a cop”

          There, fixed it for you.

          1. “unicorns landed on the moon”

            Look – I too can write fantastical things that never happened.

      2. So he should be barred from office for using his First Amendment rights of assembly & speech.

        If “convicted” of this, wouldn’t that effectively end all political rallies near/on elections ever (which happen all the time)?

        & if this isn’t a legal proceeding, stop using legal words such as insurrection.

      3. How is assembling a crowd and giving a speech not protected by the first amendment? It may have been stupid and ill advised, but it did not call for violence or anything other than to express their displeasure to congress. IOW petitioning for redress of grievances.

      4. You seem not to know what a “lie” is despite your own proclivity for using them. I have yet to see any evidence that Trump thought anything he said was not true.

  2. I thought that a silver lining about Biden winning would be that I would no longer have to hear about Donald Trump all the damn time…


    1. The left needs Trump, and I’m not being glib about that. There’s a reason why they will continue to impeach him, both literally and figuratively after he left, because the left has become the party of comic outrage. Without Trump, they’re lost and without purpose.

      You’re going to see a continuous, comic string of actions which attempt to rehabilitate Trump’s existence in the body politic for the next four years.

      1. Trump is used as a stand in for the American people.

      2. Trump = Emmanuel Goldstein

        1. Emmanuel Goldtrump

    2. Orwell only got the date wrong – it’ll be 2084, not 1984 – and it’ll be Donald Trump, not Emmanuel Goldstein.

      1. Orwell the marxist / anti-fascist?

        1. Orwell called himself a socialist. He didn’t seem to be much of a Marxist, though. At least to judge from his commentary on events and books like 1984 and Animal Farm.

          1. Was he a socialist at the time he wrote 1984? People change.

            1. I think he kept calling himself socialist throughout his life. It becomes hard to understand in what sense exactly that was given his later writings. I think it was mostly sympathy for the working classes and distaste for the class system and elitism. I’m no Orwell expert, though.

  3. Fuck you Jacob. Seek help.

    1. There’s a program in Minnesota that might work.

      1. Figured you meant a knee to the neck, tho it sounds like the indefinite sex offender day spa is also fairly efficient.

    2. Yeah – I’m not as anti-Sullum as some here, but this is getting downright pathetic. The man needs medication.

      1. Euthanasia is the only answer

        1. Jacob is inciting me. He damn well better quit.

        2. A helicopter ride is traditional.

  4. We shouldn’t impeach Trump because the only meaningful effect would be to bar him from office permanently.

    If it’s The Will of the People to elect Trump to the presidency, then it’s anti-democratic for congress to force them not to. Nay, I say it’s actually totalitarian and authoritarian to subert democracy in such a way. No, says I!

    1. And I’d actually worry about that if there wasn’t zero chance of him being convicted.


      1. ^ This.

        In the end, it’s shaping up to a massive own-goal. Do they not realize that they’re handing Trump a golden “they’re so scared of me they tried to stop me from ever running for office again” campaigning point?

        1. Just because the short term political results might backfire, taking this impeachment, alongside the new War on Domestic Terror, silencing of dissent, prosecuting someone for memes, and all the other dystopian shit The Party is doing all at once after gaining complete control of the Federal Government, should be terrifying to anyone claiming to be for individual liberty.

          1. The attempt is downright blatant and creepy, yes, but there’s a competence deficit there that makes me less nervous than I might otherwise be.

        2. They just took the presidency using a guy who hid in his basement and routinely called it a day before 10 am against an incumbent who was getting 100k people at back to back to back rallies, won 19/20 “bellwether” counties, crushed Florida and Ohio, increased his vote performance by almost 20%, and won a higher proportion of minority votes than any R in 60 years… so I don’t think they’re worried about campaign strategies.

          1. I agree that they’re operating with a level of hubris that I personally think is going to blow up in their faces.

            1. They ruined the lives of tens of millions of people just to create the conditions where they could seize power.
              Where’s the blowback?
              Why would they slow down on everything they’re doing now to make blowback impossible, and the thought of it criminal?
              Totalitarians don’t give a fuck about voter sentiment, because totalitarian systems don’t allow voter sentiment.
              Please – tell us the basis for your optimism.

              1. Please – tell us the basis for your optimism.

                This kind of shit always fails. Always. Because these people are never as smart as they think they are.

                It’s a tale as old as time.

                1. Worked in Germany.
                  And Russia.
                  And Cuba.
                  And Venezuela.

                  Please tell me you have more than “it totes can’t happen here” blind faith.

          2. With the exception of Florida, tRump did about as well as expected.
            Looking at the Democratic party, they nominated someone that they though could beat tRump even if it didn’t match the extreme wing of the party.
            And they were right, enough people hated tRump that they voted for the other guy.
            The interesting thing, now that tRump is not tweeting, he seems more palatable. Guess he shot himself in the foot eh?

            1. It’s hilarious that you aren’t intelligent enough to do anything but parrot your betters.
              The math completely destroys your argument, but like a good little drone you just repeat that 2+2=5 without wondering why.

            2. Stopped reading at tRump .

    2. But it is Constitutional to bar someone from running for President, just as it is Constitutional to limit the President to two terms, and to require the President to be native born. The people can elect who they want only within the limits set forth in the Constitution. Authoritative/totalitarian as it is.

      1. No it isnt. Cite the clause. Clngress can not bar random citizens from running if they meet the qualifications for office. And don’t cite the impeachment because it is conditional on removal from office.

        1. Isn’t that the point here. You can only bar Trump from running again if you first impeach and remove him. Therefore impeachment and removal are necessary steps to bar Trump from running again. If that is the ultimate goal here.

          1. No, the point is you can’t bar him. Not while also followng the Constitution.

          2. That’s what democrats are attempting to do, and it is obvious. There concern is not impeachment but barring a citizen from legally running for office. Oddly you have no issue with taking a voter’s choice away from them.

        2. “it is conditional on removal from office”

          Your wanting that interpretation to be the accepted one doesn’t make it so. To anyone who looks at it honestly, the language is ambiguous.

          1. ahahahahah you got banned

            ahahahah for lying about the protesters killing a cop lolol

          2. The fact that no one has been removed from office after leaving office makes it seem many in government agree. Including the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

    3. If Trump were really so toxic, they would be encouraging him to run again, just like they did in 2016.

      The fact they are trying to make it illegal for him to run tells you everything you need to know.

      1. True that – it’s come out more than once, in CA anyway, that the Democratic gubernatorial campaigns are often among the biggest supporters of the most off-putting Republican primary candidates – Gray Davis’ campaigning for Bill Simon and against Richard Riordan in the 2002 primaries being a particularly blatant example, Simon being one of the most off-putting people ever to run for office. Similar thing with the Senate campaign of Michael Huffington, who was such a douche his wife built a career off of divorcing him.

      2. But they’ll fail to do that, so they get the best of all worlds. They get to rant about him, make the Republicans look bad, and he might even run again and fuck up the Republicans in 2024

        1. Agreed.

        2. Deal. Let’s do it.

        3. At what point has he messed up Republicans?

      3. They’re all just jealous no one storms the capitol for them.

        1. One day.

        2. Weird because I remember DC literally being on fire over the summer.

          1. That wasn’t about them enough. They’re still jealous.

    4. Then explain term limits – – – – – –

      1. And age requirements and naturalization requirements (Arnold Schwarzenegger!)

    5. It could also mean the lose of post-presidential benefits (pension, Secret Service detail, staff allowances…). That is why I am not convinced that this impeachment is unconstitutional. If Trump was just another citizen now then I say no they can’t impeach him but he continues to profit from that position and we just have to keep paying; tired of that shit from the beat cop up to the president. I like to see them do it to Obama (illegal war, spying on the US…) and Bush (torture program). I don’t think that this kerfuffle at the Capitol rises to those levels, but for Trump’s tariffs; I’d take every last benefit from him.

      1. We don’t get to impeach anybody for making decisions we don’t like or agree with. It would be unlikely for the Secret Service to quit protecting a former POTUS even if impeached. They have far too much critical information that our international adversaries could capitalize on were they to capture and interrogate.

        1. If I remember my public school history, Andrew Johnson was impeached for firing a cabinet secretary. I guess what comes around goes around for the Republicans… 150 years later.

  5. and forced the members of Congress who were about to ratify Joe Biden’s victory to run for their lives instead sit patiently in their offices a block away.

  6. >>No amount of parsing can obscure his responsibility for the deadly attack on the Capitol.

    you are awful. you have zero credibility. please stop doing this professionally. or go do it somewhere I don’t hang out I suppose I don’t care about that.

    1. Why hang out here if you hate it? The guy works here. You don’t like his stuff, don’t read it.

      1. Most of the commenter aren’t leftists doing cosplay.

      2. Fuck off Jeff

      3. Very few here read the articles, we just jump straight to the comments to whine.

      4. Reason was once a great libertarian magazine. Gaslighting DNC politruks like Sullum don’t belong here even if rich Uncle Charles demands it.

      5. I can speak for myself. I think Sullum does great on many topics. Guns and drugs being his strongest suits, I’d say.
        I don’t think I could be reasonably called any kind of Trump enthusiast, and I have often defended Reason against what I see as unreasonable criticism. But I tend to agree that many of the writers here really lost it with Trump. There are a few exceptions, but Sullum is one of the worst on that measure.

    2. >>No amount of parsing can obscure his responsibility for the deadly attack on the Capitol.

      Not sure how many other interpretations there are for “peacefully protest”. I keep trying to parse out any phrase Trump used that satisfy the normal legal definition of incitement but keep coming up empty. Weird that a “libertarian” publication spills so much ink to attack 1st amendment speech that questioned the legitimacy of government as they have been doing here non-stop since Jan 6.

  7. “deadly attack”—? WTF? …. Propaganda Article plain as day.

    1. An unarmed protester was murdered by a cop which qualifies as a deadly attack.

      1. chemjeff radical individualist
        February.9.2021 at 8:56 am
        What is there to talk about?

        From a libertarian perspective, Ashli Babbett was trespassing, and the officers were totally justified to shoot trespassers. Again from a libertarian perspective, the officers would have been justified in shooting every single trespasser. That would not have been wise or prudent, of course.

        They were all trespassers trying to be where they weren’t supposed to be.

        1. I love how you think this is some type of indictment, when it is standard libertarian doctrine when it comes to defense of property.

          What are you doing here if you DON’T think lethal force can be justified in the defense of property?

          Wait I know what you are doing here. Lying and demagoguery, mainly.

          1. “when it is standard libertarian doctrine when it comes to defense of property.”

            Shooting people for accessing their own property?

            No reatrd, that isn’t ” standard libertarian doctrine when it comes to defense of property.”

            1. I am so tired of people who hate Trump doing what Jeff is doing. No it isn’t Libertarian doctrine to kill people for accessing public property, and Jeff knows this but just lies without varnish.

            2. She was shot for violating a perimeter around our elected officials on a patch of ground that is metaphorically “our property” but has security rules.

              Look, I visited the Capitol back in the days when anyone could walk in, and ideally that’s the way it should still be. But that doesn’t mean the security guards cannot use force to stop a violent mob.

              1. As someone, who has received the training that goes along with the awesome responsibility of being able to dole out government sanctioned lethality, I can state, unequivocally, that what happened to Ashli Babbitt is IN NO WAY a justified use of deadly force.
                The fact that this officer might continue to have that responsibility should frighten people far more than the prospect of Donald Trump once again becoming president.

                1. TDS is real, and in this particular case, it’s leading to the justification of murder of one of his followers.

            3. While it is public property, access to it is not always available to the public. Just like Top Secrete information, you as a member of public own it, but for your own good, you can’t actually see it.
              If you think otherwise, walk onto a military base and take one of your jet fighters out for a spin.

          2. What are you doing here if you DON’T think lethal force can be justified in the defense of property?

            Lethal force can legally be used–in some states (I don’t know about the District)–to protect property, but that means to prevent it from theft or destruction, not simply from having an unauthorized person on the premises.

            1. And the protesters owned that property just as much as Schumer and Pelosi do.

            2. Ask jeff about illegal immigrants next. It is hilarious how quickly his views of property switch.

          3. “it comes to defense of property”

            Chemleft finally came out and admitted he thinks that the capitol isn’t public property. Remind me how he isn’t fascist again.

          4. Keep doubling down. LOL.

            Let’s take your beliefs further… Say with BLM. Cops are legally allowed to disperse an unruly mob from public streets. You are now claiming they could have opened indiscriminate fire on the BLM protestors after declaring an unlawful assembly and trespassing.

    2. Did you hear Trump’s latest defense? Between all the people who died from COVID, ending net neutrality, and guns, no Americans were alive to die at the Capitol.

      1. Totally not out of context. Nope, not at all.

        1. Hmmmm. Not familiar with this poster, but this looks like solid mockery of lefty pants shitting. A climate change reference would have solidified it, though.

  8. “No amount of parsing can obscure his responsibility for the deadly attack on the Capitol.”

    No amount of facts or evidence can resolve Sullum’s terminal case of TDS.

  9. Incitement requires imminent action, but action sprayed by over an hour and in a different location. Furthermore Trump even said to peacefully protest. Furthermore, speech attacking the integrity of governmental processes is the most quintessentially protected speech, as it is the speech tyranny would seek to curb. Without the incitement to violence directly, which does not exist, nor a direct suggestion of anything more than protest, the perpetuation of a false idea of election fraud cannot be sufficient, because the entities which must rule it false cannot be trusted to make such determinations in the abstract.

    His election claims are irresponsible and have ethical causality to the riot, but it is massively inappropriate for any government entity to curb them under the guise of “incitement.” Including the senate in an impeachment trial. I would have hoped Reason writers understood that.

    Now if you want to impeach him for unconstitutional executive orders and declaring false emergencies, be my guest. I’ll have some other suggestions of people to impeach on similar grounds though.

    1. Swallwell just said a while ago that it was the totality of trumps speeches, not the Jan 6th speech. He just killed the democrats entire case as incitement requires immediacy.

      1. He’s such a tool. “I’m a stud. I’m fucking this hot Chinese chick. Oh…”

    2. Again, you know this not a criminal case right? The Senate, at this point, can vote to convict because they don’t like tRump’s shirt color.
      Hell, Bill Clinton lied under oath – obstructed justice etc. and he got away with (not even sure the reasoning on that one).

      1. Yes, they can. That doesn’t mean it’s not stupid and wrong.

      2. That’s a really narrow reading of “congress shall make no law.” This isn’t a due process or legal concern, it’s a free speech one. Impeachment is congressional action.

    3. Well said.

      Congress can’t impeach him for actually unconstitutional, illegal actions, because presidents have been doing those things for years.

  10. I expect the Democrats will keep defining “insurrection” down until they’ll say that anybody criticizing Dementia Joe is guilty of “microinsurrection”.

    1. With a loophole for concern-trolling about Biden’s mental state in preparation for using the 25th Amendment to put Harris in.

    2. Sounds like the FBI is already investigating insurrection under very similar terms.

  11. Yawn… Trump really touched Sullum in a bad spot.

    1. Trump cracked down on pedophiles.
      Sullum got scared.

      1. “B-b-b-but Cuties is art, and they’re saying sexualizing children is bad by showing you just how bad it is.”

  12. No amount of parsing can obscure his responsibility for the deadly attack on the Capitol.

    Can the Reason editorial staff produce a style guide for us plebes so we can understand exactly what this means?

    1. It means, and I quote, “Orange Man Bad!!”

  13. Trump cultists:

    Now is the time to be contrite. Now is the time to come back to reality. Now is the time to denounce the traitor.

    So far, you guys have lost the house, lost the senate, lost the presidency, and lost the dog whistles and cover you thought you had. The world sees what you are. You are betraying the constitution by supporting a man who would take the presidency by force rather than respect the constitution and the people it protects. You are confederates, traitors.

    Decide soon whether you are an American who supports the constitution, or whether you are a cultist traitor. If you choose the latter, don’t cite the constitution, the founders, or the NAP in support of your cultist opinions ever again.

    1. ^this is what leftists and those in power really believe

      1. Straight, undisguised Stalinism

        You are already a criminal, fellow Americans, whose lives have been declared forfeit to the state/left. Thus, you cannot transgress – for you have already transgressed.

        Food for thought as you contemplate how to proceed.

      2. This what any dispassionate observer believes.

        1. So any dispassionate observer agrees that any disagreement with impeachment or the incitement charges is a traitor?

          I don’t think you know what dispassionate, observer, nor traitor means.

          But good luck on your authoritarian train – you seem to like it – though note, it’s not libertarian, it’s without question authoritarian.

          1. Yes, but haven’t you heard? Orange Man Bad!

    2. Hey cytotoxic, remember you said that the government should strafe Trump supporters with Apache attack helicopters because you’re a sociopathic faggot with revenge fantasies, but you weigh over 500 pounds and have uncontrolled diabetes which is why you obsessively castigate anyone who refuses to wear a mask because you’re at high risk of dying from Covid? Good times.

      Anyway, I sincerely hope you die of pancreatic cancer, lingering for months while you experience the most debilitating and excruciating pain any human being has ever had to endure. And on your death bed, you get to watch CNN coverage of a million Kyle Rittenhouses blowing away your LARPing retard buddies like dogs in the street.

    3. Jacob?

      But seriously dude, get your brained checked.

      “You are betraying the constitution by supporting a man who would take the presidency by force rather than respect the constitution and the people it protects.”

      Reality shows us clearly this didn’t happen. What Libtard universe are you living in? Pass Jacob the crack pipe.

    4. Dude, there’s no point. It is now and article of faith of Trumpism that the election was stolen. No amount of proof can ever convince any of them otherwise. You’d have better luck convincing Christians that Jesus was just some guy.

      1. Remember how you spent 4 years clinging to a conspiracy theory that Trump was a Russian intelligence asset who had a secret pee pee tape?

        1. Alcoholism protects him from remembering past statements. He still claims he doesn’t support the left at all, yet can’t find a single statement of his where he even said they were marginally bad.

      2. Fuck off sqrlsy.

        SQRLSY One
        February.8.2021 at 5:59 pm
        Your gist two smart fur the wrist of U.S.A.!

        February.8.2021 at 4:46 pm
        Day stow dee ewekshun! Waaaaah!

      3. Whether or not the election was stolen is completely irrelevant to whether or not Trump should be impeached.

        The election could be totally 100% legitimate and nothing Trump said or did would be worthy of impeaching him. He’s allowed to contest the results, and he’s allowed to tell people he thinks fraud happened whether he has any evidence to support that claim or not. He’s allowed to tell people to go tell Congress to do something about it.

        At this point, Congress is attempting to punish a private US citizen for speech he made. That should worry people here, but I guess Orange Man is REALLY REALLY Bad so small things like that can get ignored.

        1. At this point, Congress is attempting to punish a private US citizen for speech he made.

          Yes and no. He’s a private citizen now, but he wasn’t when he incited the mob. Because these impeachment proceedings take time, does that mean that a president can do whatever they want at the end of their term because they’ll be a private citizen by the time they can be impeached? I think not. While I see this show trial as a farce, the fact that he isn’t in office anymore isn’t one of the reasons why.

          1. What they’re accusing Trump of is criminal, there’s no need for impeachment proceedings since he’s no longer in an office you can remove him from. Try him in court, if you get your conviction he’s in prison for the rest of his natural life which is almost definitely going to keep him from being President again.

            That’s the check against a President doing shit at the end of his term. If all he does is distasteful and ill-advised, well he’s gone anyways. If what he does is so bad as to constitute a real crime, you still have real court rooms to try him in.

            Running for office is a right that American citizens have. You might not consider it as valuable as other rights, but having any of your rights revoked for making a speech should concern anyone who even pretends to be a libertarian.

            1. What they’re accusing Trump of is criminal…

              I believe part of his defense is that what he did didn’t actually fit the legal definition of incitement. But that doesn’t matter. Impeachment is a political process, not a legal one.

              The purpose of this show trial isn’t to get a criminal conviction. It’s to bar him from ever holding public office again.

              1. Admitting the purpose of this impeachment is straight up political doesn’t add legitimacy to its premise. It undercuts it. We know impeachment need not cite a crime, but to utterly detach the process from any semblance of a crime having been committed by the president is just proof positive that Congress is attempting to craft a punishment for a person they dislike for 1st amendment speech they object to, which sounds like both a direct infringement on that 1a right and bill of attainder against a political opponent.

            2. You might not consider it as valuable as other rights, but having any of your rights revoked for making a speech should concern anyone who even pretends to be a libertarian.

              Oh come on. You know there’s more to it than that. He spent weeks getting his faithful to believe that the election was stolen from him (which they will believe to their dying day), he got them all riled up, and they stormed the Capital to “stop the steal.” That’s more than just giving a speech.

              Does that rise to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors? In my opinion no. But half the country disagrees with me.

              1. italicize that first sentence…

          2. The Constitution is clear, you’re wrong.

          3. They can try him as a private citizen if he did something illegal dummy. Do you even think through your TDS insanity?

          4. If what Trump did was so bad, there would be an actual criminal charge for it. There’s not. The Dem impeachment argument lives in a world where what Trump did was simultaneously so terrible that Trump must be removed from office (even after he has already left office) and yet at the same time is so benign that no actual criminal charge against Trump applies. I get that impeachment need not cite a real crime, but it tends to help the case when those doing impeachment can at least pretend a crime did occur. In this scenario, since Trump is out of office and fully eligible to be charged as a private citizen if what he said really does meet the legal threshold for incitement, it actually makes it pretty clear that what he said and did is nowhere near as terrible as the impeachment managers want the jury to believe.

      4. This coming from the guy who fantasizes about us masturbating when we debate him.

    5. Right. You stole the election & we “lost” it. Nice story. If you know math, you know this was a theft.

    6. Fuck you.

      Club. Bury. Move on.

      That is all you deserve.

      1. cyotoxic is a fat diabetic piece of shit who is so terrified of contracting Covid that he obsessively posts 16-18 hours a day on a poorly trafficked comment section of a Marxist website about people who refuse to wear masks are traitors to the supranational global governance he worships. He certainly wouldn’t be worth killing. He’ll be mindlessly regurgitating Democratic Underground talking points right up until his left ventricle slams shut.

        1. He thinks cops can kill unarmed protesters at a whim.

    7. 4 years ago the democrats did. Does that mean they should have stopped trump russia? No. You continued doing it even until today.

    8. you are with us or you aren’t. seems this phrase was accused of incitement not to many years ago. and yet here De Oprresso is using them to incite action against those who have a different opionion

    9. You can expect to receive over the next four years what you gave out over the last four, you fat fascist fuck.

  14. Sullum: Trump should be impeached because some people acted upon things they thought they inferred from vague innuendo in the President’s speech.
    Also Sullum: Trump’s defense that he specifically called for peaceful protest doesn’t hold water because “it was predictable” that people would not act in accordance with Trump’s clear, literal, spoken words.

    What?!? The need for consistency is not strong with this one.

    1. If this twisted narrative isn’t LITERAL Soviet political correctness I don’t know what is.

      It may be TECHNICALLY correct that Trump a) did not call for violence and b) DID call for peaceful protest… but that is not POLITICALLY correct.

      It would be bad for the state if we were to act as if reality were true, so we must, instead, act as if our fantasy is true to maintain the facade of the ruling class’ propriety.

    2. C’mon folks. Doesn’t everybody know that when Trump calls for peaceful protest, he’s literally saying “Burn the motherfucker down”? Trump’s followers on January 6 knew that. The House impeachment managers know that. Why don’t you know that?

      (Or maybe you *do* know that and are just pretending not to. Maybe you’re a secret insurrectionist yourself. Maybe you need a visit from the FBI to ascertain your actual attitude toward these matters, Citizen.)

        “there will be blood in the streets”Loretta Lynch
        “Who says protests have to be peaceful“Chris Cuomo
        “There needs to be unrest in the streets”Ayanna Pressley
        “Protesters should not give up”Kamala Harris
        “I just don’t know why they aren’t uprising all over this country“Nancy Pelosi
        “You get out and create a crowd and you push back on them, tell them they are not welcome“Maxine Waters

        “Go home with love and peace, remember this day forever“Donald J Trump


  15. When, as a coach, I tell the team that we have to fight to get back in the game, I’m not inciting violence.

    The remaining accusations deal with Trumps claims that the election was fraudulently stolen.

    Nobody denies that all evidence demonstrating election fraud has been censored banned and scrubbed from all mainstream media and most social media sites.

    The evidence exists and needs objective forensic analysis during these proceedings as it has become the basis of the prosecution’s case.

    A lot of people in government and the justice system will be going to jail for a long time, while America’s involvement in electronic voting fraud in other nations also becomes apparent.

    1. If you don’t buy the underlying assumption that there was absolutely no fraud or irregularities in this election none of Jacob’s rants is relevant to anything. It’s a prerequisite that tolerates no dissent. Free minds sometimes don’t buy the conventional wisdom as Reason now demands. Time to take it off of the masthead.

      1. the underlying assumption has evolved to the point that even suggesting an investigation into any supposed fraud or irregularities might be warranted is an act of insurrection that requires coordinated deplatforming, demonetization, and possibly detainment

        1. there have been investigations…… you dumb fucks are still talking about voting software after hand recounts have given the same results. there have been audits of some level in every state. there have been explanations and corrections for every piece of BS that has been thrown against the wall….. none of that shit actually stuck, you guys just won’t look at the wall to realize that.

          i personally throw he flag when you guys call for more “investigation” not because i am against investigating….. but because you have all demonstrated that you will ignore the results the way you have ignored the results of what has already been done…… it is pointless exercise, where chumps will be crying for more investigation, no matter how much we do. i’m done trying to placate you morons.

          1. Ok, fat goebbels.

          2. The video shows proof that physical recounts found thousands of Trump votes were fraudulently switched to Biden in the machines in one county alone.

            There is something to see here. If you look.


          3. “…there have been explanations…”
            Can we see that evidence you claim to support your explanation?
            Oh, no. That might violate the “secret ballot” right, so, you just have to take the word of the people who actually did the counting.

            “The people who cast the votes don’t decide an election, the people who count the votes do.”: Joseph Stalin

    2. I have wondered more than once if this “Impeachment” isn’t exactly because once the fraud is substantiated and proof is undeniable if the Impeachment succeeds it won’t let Trump take the Presidency back even though he was rightfully elected.

      1. Vote fraud doth never prosper: what’s the reason? Why, if it prosper, none dare call it vote fraud.

    3. This.

      And even if at the end of the day the evidence is not dispositive of the elections legitimacy, people still have a right to raise questions about the integrity of our elections. It’s not illegal to believe something that doesn’t prove correct. If Trump believes he got 5 million more votes than the total reported and he only got 4,999,000 and in the end it wasn’t enough to flip the election result, he was still right to ask for disclosure of those missing 4.9 million votes, even if they didn’t change the election result in the end.

      1. More than that, when experts review a few places and find concrete evidence of systematic designed in machine fraud and their results and conclusions are banned, censored and scrubbed from all media simultaneously with a coordinated campaign of propaganda to brainwash the population to believe that “there is nothing to see here”, there is absolutely something that must be seen.

    4. Maybe we’ll finally find out who these “anonymous sources, close to the president” are.

      1. It’s on the video I posted above. Being censored by all media sources, if you don’t watch the video, maybe you won’t.

        Irrefutable proof of voting machine fraud.

  16. Just when I thought Sullum had reached peak stupid with his last article.

    1. He’s be-clowing himself as a “Libertarian”. But I’m sure he’ll fit right in at the NYT or some other liberal rag.

      1. In a way he reminds me of my senator pat toomey. Obsessed with tds while he circles the drain (Toomey not running for office again) so he’s throwing the biggest tantrum possible thinking it’ll leave a mark on history.

        In reality I bet he knows he’s getting the shikha treatment soon and will be forgotten just like her.

  17. Listened to some of that on the radio earlier. Characterizing the Trump mob as an attempt to overthrow the government is ridiculous, but that’s the current narrative. And while he definitely incited the mob, calling it and “insurrection” is a bad joke. What a farce.

    1. Yeah but you’re an unemployed hopeless alcoholic who fucks his own and operates half a dozen sockpuppet accounts on a poorly trafficked left-wing website comment section and fucks his own daughter against her will, so nobody really gives a single fuck what you think you pathetic subhuman drunken pedophile piece of shit.

    2. “And while he definitely incited the mob”.”

      Club. Bury. Move on.

      This is more than you deserve, but it is inevitably what you will receive.

      1. Ironically enough, he’ll get lined up against the wall by the administration he’s been cocksucking for a year and a half. Not much use in a Marxist society for a lazy layabout alcoholic welfare-leeching piece of shit.

        1. This is exactly the point.

          The shills believe that if they shill properly, consistently, approvingly, and loyally, they will be spared. They will not. They are never spared. Few lessons are more cemented in the historical record, especially the record of the 20th century, than the lesson of the useful idiot becoming the first round of fodder for the firing squads.

          The book chapters in the book of history are always written in the blood of idiots.

          1. *first chapters

    3. Then why the fuck did you just agree with DOL above when he said we’re all confederate traitors you broken ass bitch?

  18. Can we impeach Sullum for his deadly attack on the Reason commentariat?

    1. I feel frightened and unsafe from his articles.

  19. Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up. And if you see anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd. And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere. We’ve got to get the children connected to their parents.

    We have to level them because if there are survivors — if there are people who weather this storm, they will do it again — will take this as confirmation that, ‘Hey, it just pays to ride the wave — look at me, I’ve made it through.’

    Please, get up in the face of some congresspeople

    What we’ve got to do is fight in Congress, fight in the courts, fight in the streets, fight online, fight at the ballot box, and now there’s the momentum to be able to do this

    And it has been people, individuals who have banded together, ordinary people who simply saw what needed to be done, and came together and supported those ideals who have made the difference. They’ve marched, they’ve bled and yes, some of them died. This is hard. Every good thing is. We have done this before. We can do this again.

    You can’t be civil with a political party that wants to destroy what you stand for

    But in terms of me because I’m in the arena, you go in there, you go in, you have to be ready to take a punch, and you have to be ready to throw a punch, for the children.

    I think you need to go back and punch him in the face. I mean, the truth is, is this guy is bad for this

    I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard

    One of these things is not the like the others.

    1. You are correct! One is Literally Hitler v2.0 causing the Reichstag fire on live, national television while literally poisoning babies with lead in the water and throwing minorities into deep chasms while waving a Confederate Flag crossbred with a Swastika.

      The rest are Pro-America, freedom loving, universally holy shouts from the angels among us.

    2. Nice , I’m stealing it

  20. I have a question. Who is now the arbiter of when rhetoric is literal and literal is figurative? Sports and politics frequently utilize the rhetoric of combat and war. To suggest he meant “insurrection” while calling on supporters to “peacefully and patriotically” make their voices heard is an exercise in mental gymnastics that yields no productive result. It is conjecture and speculation. Do we honestly believe Trump intended to secure his power via civilian coup, or do we believe he hoped to pressure vulnerable Republicans into blocking the certification? That is also conjecture and speculation, but I find it much more reasonable than anything you’ve asserted here. Maybe you write for the wrong publication.

    1. “Who is now the arbiter of when rhetoric is literal and literal is figurative?”

      The government. The party. The partisans.

      1. And now Reason is officially part of the propaganda for these people.

        1. Reason. Pravda.

          There is hardly a difference.

        2. Providing a platform for unpopular or even inaccurate ideological positions is most certainly not propaganda. While I disagree with the assertion, it is the opinion of the author and not necessarily that of Reason as a conglomerate. They have also provided a platform for us to discuss it. Again, that fails the metric of propaganda. This is the problem when we are dishonest with hyperbole.

      2. Or precedent. Precedent is now the arbiter. The precedent is that the language of war is applicable outside of war. And we are ignoring precedent if the letter after one’s name is R.

  21. Biden and the Ds stole this election. If you know math, you know they stole it. It’s simply impossible for Biden to have outperformed all other Ds (look how Rs did in the House) and only in those precincts that used crazy rules. (He should have outperformed in at least a few similar precincts that didn’t use crazy rules.). There’s no way he outperformed Obama w/ Black voters, but only in those precincts he needed. (He should have outperformed Obama generally or at least in some places that didn’t matter if he’s really so poplar w/ Black voters.). There’s no way that his vote surges only happened when vote counting stopped (He should have surged during some regular counting periods.). The point is that math proves these patterns are UNNATURAL products of fraud. You have a candidate who is only unusually popular where he needs to be, where they use crazy rules & where they’re not officially counting – that just doesn’t happen. If you believe that we can or should ignore these patterns, you basically don’t believe in statistics or statistical analysis. Claims to the contrary are NOT science or reason; they’re ideology. Biden “won” via fake votes; math leaves no reasonable doubt because the pattern can’t be replicated in nature. (It’s like someone who only wins when his best friend is dealing, the security camera is down, and he’s just happened to place the maximum bet; just can’t happen naturally.)

    1. YouTube routinely removes videos showing the math, proving the steal.

      1. history will record a Wikipedia entry showing we were always at war with Eastasia

    2. Impossible and unlikely are related, but not twins.

      1. When you pile up a bunch of “unlikely” related events they become “impossible”.

        1. No, it’s still just unlikely. But so is the standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt. Unreasonable things happen from time to time.

          1. DNA evidence is sufficient to convict beyond a reasonable doubt quite frequently.
            DNA evidence is nothing more than probability, the exact same as we have with statistical analysis we have of the election.

  22. It should be noted that if Trump is… “convicted” of inciting violence, this is going to set a very interesting precedent for politicians, both past, present and future.

    1. no it won’t

      it’s all Calvinball now

      rules only apply when they feel like it

      just ask BOA, they’re rifling your records as we speak to see if you attended

      or ask the big name law firms that did lined up for pro bono Gitmo work but won’t even defend peaceful Jan 6 protesters due to “optics”

      1. remember kids, this is the same BOA that pledged ONE BILLION DOLLARS to BLM rioters

        lawz are now lolz

  23. This is absolutely disgusting propaganda and should have no place in a libertarian publication.

    1. Everything has a place in a libertarian publication. The entire points of “free minds” is having a space where every opinion may be fairly debated. The minute you say something has “no place” in a libertarian rag, you are pretty much missing the point.

      1. you seem to be confusing “libertarian” with “indiscriminate”

        1. I presume the editors and publishers discriminate… as is their right as the legal owners of the publication. I further presume they allow their writers considerable leeway and even solicit essays from other writers who may provide an interesting viewpoint. The Soho forums are a good example of point-counterpoint discussions the magazine sponsors. My sense of the libertarian perspective is to take an expansive view of the world of ideas. Or put another way, I wouldn’t think a publication very libertarian if its discriminating editorial decisions sidestepped controversial or unpopular subjects. Your mileage may vary.

          1. controversial was not the issue

            1. I’m not sure what the “issue” was nor do I particularly care. Someone thought the article was “propaganda.” That’s just a lazy way of saying they didn’t like it. So it goes.

              1. the issue was that Reason is a libertarian rag

                this article is anti-libertarian

                simple enough for you?

                probably not, head back to CNN, you’ll feel better there

              2. There’s a lot of stuff published here that I don’t like that I don’t call propaganda. The word has a meaning, I believe it applies to this article, and correctly using a word isn’t being lazy. Putting a word someone used in “quotes” as a counter argument on the other hand, is lazy.

                Regarding your almost worthwhile point that a libertarian publication should publish anything for the sake of debate, this article isn’t a soho debate.

                It’s an article that is about the same topic that this writer has published nearly every day, and some days twice, for several months here at Reason. Every article is completely one sided on the topic, and frequently contains opinion presented as fact.

                Sorry if you don’t like the word, but this is propaganda.

          2. It’s not a particularly expansive view, when every article is about Orange Man Bad.
            Got any examples of REASON article saying Donald Trump was as close to a libertarian president as we have seen in our lifetimes?

      2. The person you’re referring to isn’t a libertarian. It’s just some asshole who’s been kicked off of every other comments section and sticks around here only because Reason lets them get away with saying disgusting things.

        1. I’ve never been kicked off a single comment section you lying sack of shit.

          Speaking of which, why did you agree with DOL saying we’re confederate traitors then completely contradict that with your own post?

      3. “Free minds” does not mean “entertain everything”, nor does it mean giving a space for every opinion to be “fairly debated”.

        Are you saying Reason should, as an example, publish an article defending kiddie porn, rape, murder, etc.? They fall under the purview of “everything”, after all.

        1. I think it would be hard to justify slavery from a libertarian perspective, but I would not automatically reject an essay because it attempted such a justification. And I don’t think Reason should be required to “give space” to every opinion. To require a publication to do so would be contrary to libertarian principles. While it’s easy to say the issue of “murder” is beyond debate, Reason has engaged in thoughtful discourse about physician-assisted suicide, ending the lives of terminally ill people, etc. I think part of the libertarian perspective is acknowledging that we don’t know everything. Even well-settled principles like the evil of rape do not suffer from ongoing debate.

          1. I think it would be hard to justify slavery from a libertarian perspective…

            Libertarianism is grounded in self ownership, property rights, and the NAP. Starting with those premises I can’t see any way to arrive at slavery being ok as a conclusion.

            1. Nor can I, but I’m not omniscient. I don’t discount the possibility of some interesting line of logic I haven’t considered. One of the appeals to libertarian thought is the broad concept of “everything on the table” when it comes to intellectual discourse. When someone says “this subject is settled and there can be nothing more learned,” that alone piques my interest.

          2. If you take radical libertarianism to its logical end, slavery can be justified – if a person has full ownership of his/her own body, why can’t that person sell his/her body into slavery of his/her own free will? Why should the state prohibit that transaction from occurring? In principle it’s no different than individuals selling body parts of their own free will, or individuals consuming drugs of their own free will – they all revolve around the absolutism of self-ownership. One of the libertarian arguments against it is that self-ownership is inalienable, and therefore cannot be transferred to another person. But if that’s the case, then self-ownership rights aren’t absolute, then, are they? The other more persuasive argument IMO is more utilitarian in nature: slavery is such a massively moral abomination that prohibiting it results in a far more liberty-embracing world, even if it means preventing the microscopically few people from selling themselves into slavery of their own free will.

            1. Because that wouldn’t be a slave if there was a transaction involved between the person and the new owner. Libertarians also value contract law, and it’s highly unlikely someone would willfully sell themselves to another without a contract outlining what can and cannot be done or requested. That’s quite different from slavery ya fucking dolt.

            2. Poor Jeff doesn’t know the difference between slavery and indentured servitude.

      4. Sorry, you can justify it how you want, but pro-government show trial propaganda does not have a place in a libertarian publication.

  24. What a farce. very bad precedent indeed. Can’t wait for the mid terms are over to start impeaching every frigging democrat in on this shit show.

  25. The fight today is online. But these cowards were too scared to fight (they got their asses handed to them repeatedly by the socialists) so they stormed the capitol out of impotence and frustration. The result was obvious and they have only themselves to blame for their predicament. Most of them realize it in hindsight.

    The fact that people fight libertarians and capitalists like Reason only proves my point – you run from the enemy because you’re scared.

    (Now whine about how they censor you when you try to fight them, and that’s how you know Trump actually won which proves ‘election fraud’ and justifies insurrection which didn’t actually happen.)

    1. Sorry, but you’re not really the arbiter of where this fight is an isn’t taking place.

      The idea all these people must be on certain social platforms and must be engaged in specific political speech but aren’t may frustrate you, but that in no way requires them to act in any certain way.

      It’s a childish authoritarian belief you have that the fight is only happening where you believe and any not engaged are running from it.

      Grow up dolt.

  26. 1. What about Kamala Harris’s responsibility?

    2. I guess I should be in jail right now?

  27. When did Reason become a Deep State mouthpiece?

    EVERYONE who died was a Trump supporter.

    NONE of them died from injuries sustained by the protesters — there was NO EVIDENCE Sicknick sustained any blunt force trauma.

    The RESPONSE to the Jan 6th protests killed five Trump supporters — ALL of them were denied prompt medical attention.

    But for some reason, we’re told minor property damage during a vote fraud protest is far worse than the BLM/Antifa riots that Democrats have been funding with billions of dollars and bailing out of jail ALL YEAR.

  28. Jacob, I get it. You don’t like Trump. Fine. We’re still a moderately free country, so you’re more than welcome to your personal opinions of him.

    But you are near obsessed with the guy, to the point where you’ve lost your grip on reality.

    That’s not normal. Perhaps a sabbatical is in order?

  29. Re: Deadly:

    Why Are the Feds Hiding Brian Sicknick’s Medical Report?

    Narrative 1:0: The Brazen Lie
    The day after Sicknick’s reported death, depraved toilet paper company and full-time libel factory known as The New York Times jumbo-tronned a massive, howler headline, later confirmed to be a Judith Miller-level damn dirty lie.

    Narrative 1.0 absolutely saturated the airwaves, editorials, and social media. Every MSM outlet from USAToday to the NY Post to the Daily Dot repeated that Sicknick was “bludgeoned by a fire extinguisher.” Not “sources say.” Not “many believe” — just a totally unqualified, unequivocal statement of fact.

    In an unforgivable shocker, the House Trial Memorandum itself, which sets forth the very impeachment charges for which the 45th President stands accused, names Trump liable for “insurrectionists” that “killed a Capitol police officer by striking him in the head with a fire extinguisher.” Their source? The New York Times.

    But the toilet paper Times left a real stinker inside this one. Because every claim they made, every detail conveyed, was a lie.

    Law enforcement officials now tell CNN that there was no fire extinguisher blow, no bloody gash, and no blunt force trauma to Sicknick’s body when he died.

    Not only that, but it is increasingly unclear when, where and if Sicknick was even rushed to the hospital.

    As it turns out, multiple hours after the protest had already concluded, Sicknick texted his own brother Ken that very night he was basically fine, other than being “pepper sprayed twice,” confirming he was safe and “in good shape.”


      We are told that the DC riot killed five people. Sometimes seven deaths are linked to the riot. But here’s the truth, as far as we’ve been officially told:

      Of seven deaths, two were officers who committed suicide after the riot. We have never been given any evidence or any reason to believe that their suicides had anything to do with the riot. This is simply an assumption that many have made.

      Of the five who died in or shortly after the riot, one was a man with a pre existing condition who suffered a heart attack. Another suffered a stroke at some point that day and died in a hospital.

      One woman collapsed while in a rush of people outside the Capitol and died. We were told she was “trampled to death.” The medical examiner never confirmed that as the cause of death. We have not been given any additional information.

      The fourth civilian death was Ashli Babbitt. She was an unarmed woman shot and killed by a Capitol Police officer inside the Capitol.

      The fifth death was Officer Sicknick. We have been given absolutely no official information about his death at all. The only thing they’re telling us is that he was at the riot and later died. The autopsy results are being withheld. Nobody has been arrested for his murder.

      So of the five deaths linked to the riot, only one — Babbit — can be conclusively considered a death caused by violence during the riot. Only the violence in this case was done by a cop. That is what we know right now. If anyone knows more, they aren’t telling us.

      Does this matter? Yes, because the truth matters. Also because the “deadly riot” characterization is how they’re justifying the military occupation of DC. People died. It’s tragic. But the how and the why really matter. A lot.

      1. They certainly committed attempted murder on the US constitution. Would you be parsing the specifics if it were Antifa?

        Be honest and tell me how you would feel if it were Antifa.

        1. if it were Antifa the media wouldn’t have covered it, let alone made up accusation of murder and printed them as fact

          1. Ah, it’s not that Antifa is almost totally nonviolent, it’s that it’s a Jew conspiracy to hide all their violence.

            Same shit different century. Oh well, we’ll just have to kill all the Nazis all over again. At least that’s one thing we do well.

            1. the Nazis were nonviolent 99% of the time

              why does everyone focus on the other 1%

              1. ^ this.

            2. You can always tell when a fucking liberal is going insane, and the post above proves it.

            3. it’s not that Antifa is almost totally nonviolent

              There are a number of violently dead people hiding in that “almost.”

              it’s that it’s a Jew conspiracy

              No one mentioned Jews but you. Dogs & dog whistles, and all that.

              Oh well, we’ll just have to kill all the Nazis all over again. At least that’s one thing we do well.

              Which comes to a point I was raising earlier today:

              What if the “Nazis” that you want to round up and kill aren’t really Nazis? What does that make you?

              1. that can’t be right, they were just nominated for a Nobel Fiery But Mostly Peaceful Prize

                1. Ah yes, the Nobel Intensified Peace Prize.

                  1. Don’t you mean “fortified”?

              2. They made war on my country. I suppose regular law enforcement has to do since they’re not Muslim.

                But my original question is whether any of these folks would give BLM their organic meals if they pulled something like this.

                Of course I have long known that this little problem in this country would have to be dealt with sooner or later. What if all the scientists are right about climate change after all? I realize the thought is ludicrous to the geniuses who think the media is hiding the truth about Antifa.

          2. And if it were Antifa, there’d have been a lot more arson.

        2. How I would feel if it were Antifa?

          I would feel that that was the *least* destructive ‘riot’ they’ve caused in the last year.

          1. Your brain has been damaged by the FOX news you consume. There’s a reason they’re being sued for their lies. It’s because they lie.

            1. Lots of places documented the antifa and blm riots last year you fucking dumbshit.

              Are you just that retarded or is it deliberate?

              1. lol no he just doesn’t care

                their response to BLM was to give them billions of dollars

                but as we saw on Jan 6, the minute the right can be blamed for some probably fictitious violence the left will immediately wet their pants and claim Ted Cruz is trying to kill them and demand everyone acknowledge it as TEH WORST RIOT EVAH before demanding everyone from BOA to Facebook take immediate action against the “insurrectionists”

                1. Did they ever storm the capital and attempt to overthrow an election?

                  1. They attempted to storm the White House. They also stormed an area near the Capitol of Washington state and declared it their own fort for a few weeks.

                  2. leftist protesters have occupied the Capitol countless times just this year, thanks for asking

                    antifa also set a Mayor’s apartment complex on fire

                    1. And is your argument that someone else committing a crime absolves Trumpers of theirs?

                  3. Have you stopped touching children yet?

        3. “They certainly committed attempted murder on the US constitution”

          This is worse than squirrel shit, and only worth 25 cents.

        4. Have you stopped touching children yet?

    2. not so fast

      according to dozens of senior intelligence analysts, Brian Sicknick’s autopsy bears all the hallmarks of a Russian disinformation campaign

  30. The question “Was Trump responsible?” is different than the question “Should the Senate vote in favor of the article of impeachment?” Had there been no rally, no Trump speech, would the Capitol riot (or whatever it was) occurred? As a free speech absolutist, I think Trump had a right to blather. I don’t think his words crossed the threshold into criminal behavior. I think the adults who marched their asses down to the Capitol are responsible for their own damn behavior. But impeachment isn’t a criminal proceeding, it is a political one. The real issue here isn’t the impeachment (part 2) or the election. America is so far into partisan warfare that the two warring factions will burn every democratic institution into the ground for the sake of harming “the other.” The decline into a low-trust society increases the odds of sliding into a (more) authoritarian state. The battle now isn’t over whether we should have secret police, it’s who the secret police are disappearing.

    1. The battle now isn’t over whether we should have secret police, it’s who the secret police are disappearing.

      Pretty much.

      1. people still don’t get it

        remember a few months when Democrats across media and tech were screaming about “secret police disappearing people” because DHS officers took off their nametags after being doxxed by the antifa thugs they were arresting?

        they are either shameless or deliberately ignorant, pointing out all of this rank hypocrisy means nothing to them, they either already know or don’t care

        1. remember a few months when Democrats across media and tech were screaming about “secret police disappearing people” because DHS officers took off their nametags after being doxxed by the antifa thugs they were arresting?

          I remember something about people in black arresting people, but everyone was accounted for. Nobody disappeared and I don’t recall anyone saying they were. But I limit my media consumption. Don’t want to go batty like so many people have.

          they are either shameless or deliberately ignorant, pointing out all of this rank hypocrisy means nothing to them, they either already know or don’t care

          I’m not too big on either/or declarations. They’re often false dichotomies.

          1. lol well that’s probably wise, but the claims of “kidnapping” and “disappearing” were covered by every MSM outlet, and the state of Oregon sued DHS over it

            lol too many people still assume it MATTERS if people were actually disappearing, no one actually cares

            Lisa Page, Peter Strzok, and Kevin Clinesmith are heroes and Babbit was an “insurrectionist”

    2. Don’t you think punishing the behavior of someone trying to overthrow the constitution and install himself dictator might be good for the future of the constitutional system?

      1. Sure.

        However, that’s not who is in the dock.

      2. Didn’t happen at all you ignorant fuck.

        1. It actually did. You are going to be so surprised if you ever accidentally tune to some factual news.

          1. You consider this factual?

            …someone [Trump] trying to overthrow the constitution and install himself dictator…

            Because you have no proof of any of that – the only proof would be inside Trump’s head which I’m pretty sure you don’t access to since you lack the psychic skills required. Maybe talk to John Edward.

            1. Why are you defending him? Do you really think this is going to end up well for him or his supporters?

  31. Get some serious professional help, Sullum. Your TDS is off the fucking charts.


    1. Name something you think it’s legitimate to criticize Trump for.

      1. Bumpstock ban.

        Not rescheduling marijuana.

        Trying to start a trade war with China.

        Now – you. Name something you think it’s legitimate to praise Trump for.

        1. I am on record with the opinion that he might be the worst human being alive on earth, but he did have some good impulses on criminal justice reform. And honestly, I don’t blame people for their mental illnesses. I only blame people for voting the extremely mentally ill into offices of great power.

          At long last, what the actual fuck is wrong with you people?

          1. Your opinion is meaningless. You and every liberal need something to hate and Trump was perfect for your impulses. You see the commie retard liberal left like you cannot exist without enemies.

          2. If you think Trump is the worst person on earth then you think the Nork government is full of better people?

            I can see why you wonder what is wrong with us – you’ve gone round the bend and off the cliff and wonder why we’re not following you down.

            1. “Why is everybody rushing off into the sky?! What’s wrong with you people?!”

      2. He failed to limit spending, and although he didn’t start any new wars, he let the swamp creatures thwart his plan to bring all the troops home from Afghanistan and Iraq.


        1. On a related note, the greatest service that Trump did for his country is the same one that Obama did: they bothy prevented a Hillary Clinton regime.


      3. Idiotic tariffs that only enriched China.

        Continuing idiotic tariffs involving France, et al that simply strengthened China’s global position. And worsened ours.

        Not pardoning Snowden.

        Bump stock bans.

        Terrible cabinet choices.

        Being another basically-did-nothing like Obama, with the exception of destroying the nation to further progressive agenda. Like Obama. Sometimes what a president did for his political “opposition” was the goal all along. Especially if that president is actually a member of the opposition party.

        Not allowing Russian firearms to be imported again.

        Being owned by China and Russia.

        Being a charlatan.

        His repulsive behavior with his daughter.

        Not being a racist (or laying the foundation that eliminates the possibility) but choosing multiple breeding partners from a region infected with the worst racism in the world (after India and parts of Asia). Thus leaving the door open for political fuel for this fabricated race war.

        Being a buffoon.

  32. Watching jacob over these last few months is like watching Arthur Fleck’s downward spiral of revolution which ultimately leads to him becoming the joker but in jake’s case he will end of being some pedo villian. Get some help boy before this gets any worse

  33. Yet another anti-free-speech article.


  34. “Although Trump said his supporters should protest ‘peacefully,’ it was predictable that some of them would go further than that.”

    Yes. It’s predictable that people will do what they want to do in spite of requests to do the opposite. That’s not incitement.

    Saying things that make people mad also isn’t incitement. Incitement is telling people to commit crimes. Trump literally did the opposite.

    1. Convict him for lying to them about the outcome of the election then. For soliciting the Vice President and every Republican he could get his paws on to overturn the results. For getting hundreds of thousands of people killed. Who the fuck cares. The United States government does not exist to protect Donald Trump’s feelings.

      1. yes convict all the people we don’t like for doing anything we don’t like

        1. There should be some standards for the president. I realize you think they should be guys who you think five you permission not to feel bad about your bad habits.

          1. everyone should be held to the standard of “Tony disapproves”

            anyone failing the standard should be arrested and given a show trial

          2. “There should be some standards for the president.”

            There are. In the Constitution.

            1. Don’t spare us the punchline…

              And that’s why Donald Trump is eligible but Barack Obama isn’t.

              Oh the glories of the constitution.

              1. Have you stopped touching children yet?

          3. Well there’s more evidence Biden committed sexual assault, committed a quid pro quo in Ukraine, and took bribes from China, than trump. So let’s start with those standards and go from there

      2. How many thousands of people did Cuomo kill?

        How many thousands have died while Joe Biden sat on his ass in the White House?

        1. I am so fucking sick of you mental midgets turning everything into your own comforting tribal narratives. Viruses are not Democrats and they are not the Chinese. Fuck. You’re so goddamn stupid it makes my eyeballs hurt.

          I’m talking about policy. If Republicans want my respect, all they have to do is have some good ideas instead of the worst ones.

          1. “I am so fucking sick of you mental midgets turning everything into your own comforting tribal narratives”

            lol the self-awareness

            go read the Sicknick autopsy

          2. If you are sick of it, then leave you gaping prolapse of a human being.

          3. If Republicans want my respect

            No Republicans or Libertarians want your respect. The appropriate response to idiots is to laugh or ignore.

            I am amused Tony believed every covid death was Trump’s fault even as he exonerated Cuomo who killed more people via Covid than any other Americans. Given his history you’d think he’d wait longer to claim being President doesn’t make one responsible for Covid deaths but he’s too stupid to even understand that.

          4. Viruses aren’t Republicans either – but you’re blaming them for Corona.

            1. I’m blaming Trump for probably the entire damn thing. America was there in Wuhan and he kicked them out because he’s a retard.

          5. Viruses aren’t republicans or Trumpers either. Trump didn’t kill anyone. If you can lay that on Trump, then you can lay it on every governor and every world leader too. And for fuckers like Cuomo who actually created policies that directly got people infected, it’s a much more solid case.

      3. Convict him for lying

        Oo! Oo! Now do Obama! Remember “you can keep your doctor”? How about “fast and furious”, or the bullshit story that the Benghazi attack was because the terrorists were in a snit over a YouTube video?

        getting hundreds of thousands of people killed.

        You can shove that one right back up your ass, pinhead. Trump wasn’t responsible for China’s deception.


      4. Except it wasn’t a lie and even if it was, we don’t know that Trump knew it was a lie. There’s a difference between lying and being incorrect.

    2. It’s also predictable that folks Kamal bailed out would go back out and riot. Is that incitement?

      1. their violence is free speech

        your free speech is violence

  35. “>>No amount of parsing can obscure his responsibility for the deadly attack on the Capitol.”

    But a timeline comparing when the (preplanned) “riot” started to that point in the speech would have been helpful in determining truth.

  36. No matter how you parse it Trump is responsible for the “deadly” attack?

    Let me parse it. The only people responsible for the violence are those who did it no else you moron.

    Deadly? Yea Ashli Babbitt was the sole unarmed protester who was killed in the riot. That’s it. And boy oh boy has she disappeared from the storyline unlike a over dosed violent criminal George Floyd.

    And what was the name of that police officer who shot her?

  37. As shameless as I know Republicans are, there’s something extra disturbing about their dismissal of this all an account of their tribe. If these videos had black people instead of Trump supporters in them, they’d probably all be stains on the ground and we’d have martial law. You’re trying to tell me there are no double standards? These guys have been treated with more deference and sympathy than a black kid getting shot for walking down the street doing nothing.

    One of our political tribes advocates setting the constitution on fire and implementing various genocides to protect the delicate feelings of walking heart attacks from Bumfuck Alabama. What are they even trying to conserve? The right of white assholes to shit on the capitol building over trans pronouns? Tax cuts? Do any of you even know what you support, or is it all chimp-brain tribe shit?

    1. And you never disappoint. You are the dumbest of the dumb. Congratulations for invoking the race card you idiot

      1. Explain why you think Republicans would be behaving exactly the same way if it were BLM instead of Proud Boys.

        1. Because they don’t support burning your neighborhood down to ‘stick it to the man – and snag a new tv’.

          1. Now – you. Explain why you think Democrats would be behaving the exact same way if it were BLM.

            1. If BLM is in town the cops are usually in military formation. The tear gas usually starts getting thrown before any violence happens.

              If we’re keeping score, you’re for cops brutalizing black peaceful protesters and no doubt shitting your panties in terror over them kneeling during the national anthem, but also for making excuses for white people murdering cops and desecrating the capitol building.

              Just stop it with the freedom shit. Nobody is under the impression you care about freedom for anyone else but your own tribe. If you’re going to be a fascist, just be one. Why would you be affiliated with something you’re ashamed of? That I have never understood.

              1. lol BLM killed dozens of people and caused more property damage than any riots in US history

              2. making excuses for white people murdering cops

                A cop shot a protester. No cop was murdered.

                At best a cop was accidently injured in a way that may have let to his death, but as has been pointed out to you again and again and again (this is you, after all), all of that is speculation backed with no evidence whatsoever.

                So there’s an important distinction you’re getting exactly backwards:

                The cop shot the protestor.

                Say it with me, because you have it exactly wrong:

                The cop shot the protestor.

              3. And those cops instantly stand down when BLM starts to riot and set cities on fire. Portland antifa basically had free reigns to attack a federal courthouse for months.

                To keep score, you were ok with anarchists murdering 30 people, destroying entire cities, and forming their own autonomous zone and shooting at Americans trespassing on their imaginary borders, but when Trump fans emulated their behavior for one day, you suddenly find moral backbone to condemn political violence.

                How many unarmed people did Obama kill with his illegal drone strikes, Tony? Should we have burned down cities in protest? Why weren’t there massive riots when Kelly Thomas, Duncan Lemp and Tony Simpa were killed? If you think BLM is all about police brutality, then there are bridges to be sold.

                You and your miscreant friends defend millionaire athletes right to kneel on the flag but would try to cancel a middle class white American for selling Mexican food. Please, spare me your selective moral outrage. China killed millions with their virus, Cuomo acted like their American manager, and the 20% increase in murder mostly involved black people. You and your friends have also killed more people of color than any white supremacists can ever hope for.

                I came to this country in 91 and maybe 5 years later Koreatown was burning. The sanctimonious “in the name of fighting racism” excuse was self serving back then as it is now. Your kind exists to destroy society in the name of reforming it. It’s all you do.

                CA had 400 deaths in April and the BLM retards decided to kill their own people and Latinos by staging massive unregulated protests, and the democrat base turned out in force to celebrate Lakers and Dodgers championship, which led to second wave and more deaths. But oh no, our capitol was “desecrated”! But all those statues and public instiution that was attacked were just fun stunts!

              4. “white people murdering cops ”

                I kone of love that you are well aware your entire premise rests on a debunked pile of nonsense. It really shows how desperate you are.

              5. Well, they are now. Because of the rioting and looting.

                Oh, care to explain how assaulting a federal courthouse is ok?

              6. Also, why is it ok for black people to murder cops but the rest of us can’t get in on that action?

                Is it because you’re a racist?

    2. You are really obsessed with black people rioting.

    3. Fuck off and die, fascist shill.

    4. You see Tony knows that Trump is not going to be convicted of anything. He’s poisoned his mind with hatred by consuming vast quantities of leftwing speech and violence on the internet and now he’s doubled down on getting revenge. Like most commie left liberal democrats he cannot believe this promotion of violence against his enemies and hatred of the other won’t work.

    5. If these videos had black people instead of Trump supporters in them, they’d probably all be stains on the ground and we’d have martial law.

      There were black people there. They survived. And there were lots of black people in a crowd that tried to break into the whitehouse, causing the president to flee to a secure location. I’m pretty sure they weren’t mowed down by machine gun fire either.

  38. It is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy.”

    this clearly implies for congress not protesters to do something. but heck if you want to ignore the quotes you quoted. i can lead you to water but i can’t make you drink it

  39. I knew from the title who the author was – the same propaganda-spouting clown who writes all the Trump Derangement Syndrome articles. I say that as someone who does not support Trump. I just think if you’re a journalist you ought to write with a modicum of dispassionate reason. Obviously the Propaganda Press (CNN et al) writes with absurd prejudice, but I wouldn’t expect that from REASON.

  40. I hate to defend the guy, but exactly how did he incite the riot? The strongest evidence of that is him saying “fight like H*ll”. Rand Paul made a good defense of that as common political hyperbole. The rest of it was just stuff like “walk to the capitol” and “peaceful”.

    1. If I had a dollar for every time i’ve heard a politician brag that he was going to fight I could treat my entire extended family to dinner at the French Laundry.

  41. Oddly enough, nobody wanted a member in good standing of the Ruling Class, Geo. W. Bush, impeached for lying us into a war in Iraq.

    How many died there?

  42. It appears that Jacob Sullum wants to be able to go through life scapegoating others for his deviancies.

  43. I am not a big Trump fan, but I can’t help but comment on the irony of a libertarian publication condemning him for his exercise of the most fundamental of Constitutional liberties, that of political speech. Sure, Trump may have been off his rocker in thinking the election was stolen, but do libertarians really want to support the notion that one should be sanctioned for voicing incorrect opinions?

    1. Hell no. A real libertarian would realize HIS SPEECH IS ALWAYS UNPOPULAR. They would NEVER support the formation of the Ministry of Truth.

    2. even if Trump was off his rocker, Time magazine just gleefully expostulated the entire media/tech conspiracy to suppress any such vote fraud complaints long before Trump made them

      it’s all Calvinball now

    3. you need to understand, this was not one speech….. this was not him merely expressing himself. he spent months convincing this people the election was stolen, and he spent months convincing these people congress could change it. he invited them on that day to make them do so…… toss out the language, and he still incited a call to come to the capital and fight to reject the legitimate outcome of the election…. and he set up the rally to get them all there at the same time….. it reads like incitement even without the specific words he chose. he wasn’t just speaking his mind, he incited and organized a mob against congress, and now wants to act surprised that there was a mob against congress.

      1. Foo_dd
        February.10.2021 at 7:53 pm
        “you need to understand, this was not one speech….. this was not him merely expressing himself. he spent months convincing this people the election was stolen, and he spent months convincing these people congress could change it. he invited them on that day to make them do so…”

        You need to understand you’re a fucking TDS-addled lefty, whiny shit incapable of logic.
        Fuck off and die, asshole.

        1. you need to understand, this was not one speech….. this was not him merely expressing himself. he spent months convincing this people the election was stolen, and he spent months convincing these people congress could change it

          Which is still all speech. People, including you, commenting on this message board are exercising their freedom of speech without giving an actual speech.

          It’s just childish & disingenuous to pretend otherwise.

          1. f**king server squirrels

      2. …you need to understand, this was not one speech….. this was not him merely expressing himself. he spent months convincing this people the election was stolen, and he spent months convincing these people congress could change it. he invited them on that day to make them do so…

        Which is still all speech. People, including you, commenting on this message board are exercising their freedom of speech without giving an actual speech.

        It’s just childish & disingenuous to pretend otherwise.

      3. Trump didn’t convince many the election was stolen – the Ds, bureaucracy, poll workers, major media, social media, and statistics did.

  44. “No amount of parsing can obscure his responsibility for the deadly attack on the Capitol.”

    Uh-huh. Besides the obvious lack of Trump calling for riots, the author simply assumes a lack of agency on the parts of those who actually did enter the Capitol sans permission…automatons all!

  45. “Although Trump said his supporters should protest “peacefully,” it was predictable that some of them would go further than that”

    Was it? How so?

  46. Another Sullum rant about nothing. He isn’t getting convicted and also by the way he isn’t president.

  47. Sullen is not even useful anymore. He’s just an idiot.

  48. Cut Sullum a break.

    In a few days Trump will be over, and he’s going to have to work for a living instead of barfing “Orange Man Bad” onto our screens.

  49. It’s strange for a libertarian magazine to argue in favor of the government using extrajudicial methods to punish an American citizen in the absence of legal conviction or due process. “Impeachment isn’t a trial and we need to keep politicians honest” they might say. You think the government will go down a slippery slope with this precedent.

    Reason’s selective reverence of 1A is nothing short of nauseating. According to their argument, if we pared down section 230 and treated Twitter as a publisher, it would result in a chilling effect on free speech, even though my rights are NEVER violated if Hallmark Publishing refuses to print my zombie manuscript.

    But if the government censured or removed politicians for posting conspiracy theories on FB and using militant political language then…. everything’s hunky dory? What should happen left wing politicians who routinely describe ICE personnel as fascists, urge and forgive protesters for being confrontational, and order police stand down?

    Trump supporters endured 4 years of abuse from the left, who would take every opportunity to demonize them. Remember Smollet? Covington kids? Then they witnessed an real coup attempt when the FBI knowingly lied to frame Flynn and Carter. Then they watched vandals and jacobins riot in cities for unobstructed for months with the help of the ruling class, all during pandemic lockdown when lives were being erased.

    Do you think that sort of played a factor in the riots? You expect one group of people to just keep on taking abuse without lashing back at some point? And by BLM logic, most of those protesters were peaceful. Why do you waste time arguing that Trump making a political speech is an “abuse of power?” If republican turn the tables, how many Soave articles can we expect us imploring us to do nothing because “it’s wrong if we do it to them too”.

    1. Extra judicial? This is the very definition of legal. Congress has decided the election is determined. Congress has decided the proceedings will proceed.

      Everything else you wrote is a red herring. Pandemic, BLM, Covington Kids, the ruling class, hey what about kristallnacht , Pearl Harbor, 9/11 those were bad.

      So far Trump does not even have the B team in defense. The votes are not there so it will not matter.

      Abuse. Show me where you have been abused.

      1. Echospinner
        February.10.2021 at 8:38 pm
        “Extra judicial? This is the very definition of legal. Congress has decided the election is determined. Congress has decided the proceedings will proceed.
        Everything else you wrote is a red herring. Pandemic, BLM, Covington Kids, the ruling class, hey what about kristallnacht , Pearl Harbor, 9/11 those were bad.
        So far Trump does not even have the B team in defense. The votes are not there so it will not matter.
        Abuse. Show me where you have been abused.”

        I’m assuming your mommy said you were smart, but I’m also assuming she did so without reading piles of shit like this.
        She lied.

  50. “Although Trump said his supporters should protest ‘peacefully,’ it was predictable that some of them would go further than that.”

    This is the stupidity giveaway. Hundreds of left wingers – including Kamala Harris – encouraged BLM/Antifa protests even as protests had devolved into riots for months. If Trump’s responsibility is based on “predictable” than all of these people are similarly guilty. Exactly zero people now asserting Trump’s guilt claimed this.

    Moreover while it was predictable some people would devolve into violence it was also predictable that such efforts would fail if met by appropriate law enforcement. Crowd control failed because those the police report to – Pelosi and Mayor Bowser acting on the same information available to Trump – believed normal police presence was sufficient. It turned out this was wrong and they needed a bigger presence. But if Pelosi and Bowser could not accurately predict this how could Trump?

    The simple fact is that Trump’s comments were not incitement and everyone involved misunderstood what was necessary,
    although reporting is that Trump asked for more men and Pelosi & Bowser declined. Trump cannot be impeached for a mistake everyone else made to an even greater degree than he did.

    Furthermore people who characterize this as an insurrection or attempted coup are idiots living in their own FantasyLand.

  51. Trump is not responsible for the criminal actions of the rioters or of anyone else, and the idea that he betrayed his oath to uphold the Constitution is a pathetic joke. Congresscritters do that every day, so do Supreme Court judges and other federal judges. The oath is never enforced. It is just for show.
    Don’t try to use the law to punish political opponents and political speech, even if the speech was “incendiary” to some.

  52. The author seems to want to blame Trump for something he did not do. He takes a very anti-libertarian position. Trump’s comments on feeling robbed of the election may show he was mistaken, but they are not inciting a riot. The author has in essence said that we can now ban people for political speech, not for inciting a riot (which Trump did not do), but for saying something that anyone can claim they felt “unsafe” about.

  53. For all those still saying that Trump is innocent is not watching the trail. The House Managers are making a damning case against Trump and are showing that Trump is clearly responsible.

    1. You’re an idiot.

    2. “…is not watching the trail.”

      Fuck you Molly. Learn to type less drunk.

    3. MollyGodiva
      February.10.2021 at 7:15 pm
      “For all those still saying that Trump is innocent is not watching the trail. The House Managers are making a damning case against Trump and are showing that Trump is clearly responsible.”

      TDS-addled lefty shit assumes that TDS-addled lefty shit’s lies have an effect on those not TDS-addled lefty shits.

    4. For those who didn’t understand this comment, let me translate:

      “Hi! I am easily manipulated by simplistic images and nakedly manipulative language! I believe others are as simple-minded as I am! please watch the same video that convinced me of something I already believed before I watched it! I know you will be manipulated just as easily as I was!”

      1. Ha! Perfect.

  54. This is a show trial, and it should be treated like one.

    The Democrats will pay for this in polls. It won’t happen immediately, but just like John Boehner eventually paid the political price for TARP, just like Hillary Clinton eventually paid the political price for supporting the Iraq War, just like Liz Warren came in third in her home state, . . .

    The only people the Democrats are scoring points with is the people who are already on their side.

    1. The only people the Democrats are scoring points with is the people who are already on their side.

      Exactly this. And that’s way less people than they think.

    2. Too shallow, Ken. The mere idea that ordinary people can challenge institutions is deeply unsettling to those in power regardless of partisan affiliation. The one subject that Republicans and Democrats can always agree upon is that one of them should be at the levers of power. Why do you think ballot access is a “bipartisan” issue.

      Power cannot tolerate dissent. That’s why some of the charges (and sentences) will be unduly harsh. This isn’t simply about “orange man bad,” but about feeding the narrative that opposing federal overlords shall be punished.

  55. Normally sensible Jacob once again falls victim to his TDS. He said nothing illegal and is out of office. This is so old.

  56. truly amazing how many trump suckers are still hanging out on here. the one downside to these comments being really free is the number of posters who have been banned from more rational places.

    1. Hope you’re enjoying the sublime libertarian Biden admin.

      Dumbass fucktard.

    2. Foo_dd
      February.10.2021 at 7:56 pm
      “truly amazing how many trump suckers are still hanging out on here…”
      More amazing how many TDS-addled lefty shits have somehow found their way here to prove how TDS-addled those lefty shits are.
      Right, TDS-addled lefty shit?

    3. truly amazing how many trump suckers are still hanging out on here.

      Are you aware you can not like Trump, but also be against this impeachment?

  57. This video has been scrubbed and censored by mainstream and social media. Their propaganda can’t survive it being seen and shared.

    When you watch it, you’ll demand a forensic audit of the election.

    Mike Lindell of the MyPillow company has found a platform and released his long-awaited video documenting the electronic voter fraud of the 2020 election.

  58. “ To defend against those charges, it is not enough to argue that Trump could not be held accountable for the riot in a criminal case or civil lawsuit.”

    And considering that impeachment is purely political and they can vote however they damn well please, nothing could be enough for Trump. Even innocence.

    Good point!

    1. You don’t think Republicans have run out of opportunities to whine about how badly they’re treated?

      Nobody’s been more coddled by an electoral system than Republicans. It’s why they’re so hysterical about not having power.

      1. lmao – you’re beyond parody at this point.

      2. They’re so much weaker than democrats, who have a history of tolerating all events with a stoic, quiet dignity.

        1. Some day you’re going to realize how preposterous this argument is.

          You’re not right because someone else was wrong. Try defending your own position for once instead of desperately hunting for perceived hypocrisies. Whatever that position is.

  59. Geeze, Sullum. Wait until Trump is in NYC and just shoot him. A jury there wouldn’t convict you.

  60. I was watching the impeachment hearing today, and they just kept going on about the Biden bus and Trump supporters on I-35 in Austin. The impeachment manager kept claiming that the Trump supporters tried to run the bus off the road, but that was just the original claim made by the Biden folks when they originally posted the edited video.
    But when the police investigated, they found that a Biden staffer had actually been the aggressor, and the victim was the Trump supporter in the truck. The clip they show is just the Trump driver trying to get back into his lane after being hit deliberately by the Biden car.
    So that was not just an exaggeration, but a lie. They also showed video of Trump supporters engaging in violence, but did not explain that it was video of them trying to disarm a BLM/Antifa person who had been brandishing a knife at them.
    This follows comments that there were a number of stabbings and arrests at the first ( I think) “million-MAGA march”. Not mentioned was the fact that the MAGA people were the ones stabbed, and those doing the stabbings, and those arrested, were counter protesters.
    If they have to exaggerate or misrepresent in order to make their point, I become suspicious. If they just outright lie, I have to assume that they are lying about everything.
    I don’t even support Trump. I just hate being lied to.

  61. Jake, stuff your TDS up your ass, so your head has some one to talk to.
    Or, fuck off and die, you pathetic TDFS-addled piece of lefty shit.

  62. The TDS-addled asshole who writes here as Sullum wrote this:

    “The House members who are prosecuting Donald Trump on the charge that he incited last month’s Capitol riot opened their case yesterday with a dramatic video that intersperses scenes of the violence with the former president’s words that day.”

    My, oh, my.
    Imagine editing scenes from several cameras without regard to any timeline. Imagine TDS-addled assholes like Sullum promoting assholish editing of vids!
    Why, that’s………..
    not at all surprising.
    JaKE, stuff your head up your ass so your TDS has some company.

  63. All the lies seem rather preposterous in the light of day.

    Republicans gave us invisible WMDs after giving themselves credit for failing to prevent 9/11, somehow. Their prior hysterics got a federal building blown up.

    Then the dark times, where we couldn’t go in public because of the global pandemic and everything went to shit and there was a coup attempt.

    This on top of all the lying about climate change.

    What’s next? Shall I purchase some high water pants? Will President Taylor-Greene nuke Chicago?

    Oh no not the tyranny of Democrats everyone buy more guns.

    Stupid species die all the time. Keep that in mind as you continue to insist that science is optional in politics and facts are inconveniences.

    1. There is no reason to engage the asshole AKA Tony.
      “…We often think Tony, Shrike, and ChemJeff are being dishonest–especially when they don’t seem to learn anything from having their arguments shredded and smeared in their faces everyday for years. But the fact that they don’t seem to learn anything–knowledge wise or in terms of critical thinking–may be consistent with the hypothesis that they’re just not that bright. And we shouldn’t necessarily assume that Binion, Boehm, or Britschgi are fundamentally different from them.
      Maybe the reason they try to make us feel is because they’re incapable of making us think. It is beyond their capabilities…”
      Further, it has become obvious that beyond Tony’s inability to discern the difference between his fantasies and reality, he is incapable of learning.
      You might just as well try to explain, oh, the concept of “leverage” to a 3 year-old.
      You might get lucky and find a curious kid. In asswipe’s case you’ve found a drunken lefty piece of shit who really gets pissed that understanding the issue is beyond his/her ability.
      Tony, please, make the world a better place. Fuck off and die

      1. Under the Taylor-Greene administration, Sevo will be the secretary of explaining stuff.

    2. lol – now you’re going back to 2001, 20 years ago, to prove Republicans lie too? You’re on a libertarian board – almost everyone here should agree with the basic idea that both sides lie a lot, yet you’re too stupid to understand even that.

    3. Facts are social constructs.

  64. Took a look: Reason offers no resource to contact TDS-addled shitstains such as Sullum; a very good reason for the $5 2020 donation.

  65. So far the Democrats have proved there was a riot. No one disputed that. They have not proved Trump incited it. McConnell an Cheney offered nothing but opinion, not one shred of evidence. Yours and my opinions are just as valid.
    Trump told people to be peaceful which was edited out of the video presented. How can that be allowed?. Even Professor Volokh said he had not duty to predict others actions under the law. Trump is as entitled to his opinion under the 1st amendment as anyone else, even if his opinion is wrong. The riot started 15-20 minutes before Trumps speech ended. There is no proof Trump could have stopped the riot with words, as a matter of fact previous history tells us that would not be effective. Riled up mobs seldom stop until stopped by the Police. The same police that refused extra police support before the rally, removed at least some barriers, and some even took cell phone pictures with the rioters. The fix was in long before this ever started.

    1. You got part of it right — riled up mob. Who riled up the mob? Trump. Who could have prevented it? Trump. If he had said at the rally, “I know it’s not what we wanted. But I lost, folks. It’s over. We’ll look into running again in 2024. Thanks for coming to DC to show your support. It’s time to go home and live your lives.” there would have been no riot.

    2. So far the Democrats have proved there was a riot. No one disputed that.

      I’m dubious of that. Not that there wasn’t civil unrest, but from what I’ve seen none of the evidence rises above the level ‘peaceful protest’… or would if we could find all the pieces of that low bar that didn’t get smashed, looted, and set on fire.

  66. No amount of parsing can connect Trump as responsible for the actions of others at capital hill.

    It is stupid. Even a progressive writer would know that it is stupid.

    But a Libertarian? Just hand in your “I am libertarian” card and go. There is no libertarian argument for your take at all. There is not even an American argument.

    By your standard every Democrat in the nation should have been in prison long before the summer was over in 2020. And every national journalist right beside them.

    What a stupid take.

    1. Yeah, the title and subheading amount to “Stupid lawyers try to defend guilty man.” It would be one thing if he’d said “Occupy the Capitol and prevent the certification by any means necessary.” Facts as they are, the title and subheading are an affront to English common law and wouldn’t be applied to Malcolm X if he’d said it with a gun in his hands.

  67. The Ruling Republicrat Elites better hurry up converting the country into a one party authoritarian state quickly, because the standards they are setting could apply to roughly half of all their politicians.

    Politicians by their nature work to persuade voters to their point of view. At times supporters read into messages and carry out actions that do not support the beliefs of the politician.

    The same thing occurs in the corporate world. The CEO delivers a message and the at time the message is misinterpreted by employees. It could be the result of a poor message or poor delivery by the CEO, but it is more likely that the people listening had preconceived notions or poor listening skills.

    The CEO should not be removed from office, because employees took actions because they distorted the meaning and intent of the message from the CEO. Nor should the CEO be removed due to a single incident of delivering a poor message that resulted in employees misinterpreting the message.

    You should however consider replacing the CEO if there is are repeated occurrences where the CEO consistently deliver poor messages.

    The 2nd impeachment of former President Donald Trump is nothing more than a political warning from the Republicrat Ruling Elite. This warning is to prevent anyone who is not a Republicrat Ruling Elite from ever having the audacity question the Republicrat Ruling Elite. Let alone allowing the the voters to have the temerity to every elect anyone who is not anointed by the Republicrat Ruling Elite again.

    This isn’t a Democrat versus Republican issue as the Republicrat Ruling Elites control both parties. I despise both former President Donald Trump and current President Joe Biden and their authoritarian tendencies. For me, I vote third party and not for any Republicrat candidates.

    If the intent is “unity” as current President Joe Biden, then the 2nd impeachment never would have occurred. Unless by “unity”, their objective is to stamp out all dissenting opinions and thought.

    Former President Trump was simply a character that rose to the forefront in a sea of discontent that has been brewing among the minions serving the Republicrat Ruling Elites for years. Impeaching former President Trump may server to elevate him to martyr status, but in reality the discontented minions only used former President Trump as an expression of their discontent.

    The discontented minions don’t need former President Trump as a figure head. The discontented minions have observed how they clearly struck a nerve against the Republicrat Ruling Elites and the overt and brazen reaction the Republicrat Ruling Elites have taken.

    Much like the 4 minute mile that was unattainable, once achieved became commonplace. The minions now are beginning to understand and believe that “We are the Power”.

    The Republicrat Ruling Elites are right to be worried about the discontent, but have no one to blame but themselves.

  68. The rush to judgement, so common in our era by the “woke” crowd (never been asleep) and selective editing of video to gin up emotions (wait, isn’t that incitement?) necessitates a downvote on this one.

    1. Ooooh, a down vote. Isn’t that a bit extreme?

      The crooks will be quaking in their boots for sure!

  69. Sullum is an incompetent idiot incapapble of reasoned thinking. He deserves to be fired.

  70. Jacob’s implication that Trump incited with his comments isn’t a slippery slope argument, it’s a trapdoor argument to a waterslide of death. Incitement cannot be interpreted loosely, including interpretations of intent that run completely counter to the actual words stated.

    If that’s the case, then the current thoughtcrime police will interpret all of your words, including yours, Jacob, as an incitement to violence in one way or another until your very being is considered an incitement worthy of authoritative cleansing.

    I wish people would begin to understand the fire they’re playing with while they’re also sitting on a soft chair of dynamite.

    1. 18 U.S. Code § 2102(b) As used in this chapter, the term “to incite a riot”, or “to organize, promote, encourage, participate in, or carry on a riot”, includes, but is not limited to, urging or instigating other persons to riot, but shall not be deemed to mean the mere oral or written (1) advocacy of ideas or (2) expression of belief, not involving advocacy of any act or acts of violence or assertion of the rightness of, or the right to commit, any such act or acts.

      1. The latter clause pretty explicitly exempts Trump. Specifically saying that agreeing with the beliefs of protestors, defending their right to protest, but denouncing or (inclusive) not participating in the violence or their right to do violence doesn’t constitute incitement. It describes Trump’s actions to a ‘t’.

    2. You should probably look up the word incite so you have a clear understanding of what the word means. After gathering thousands and thousands of his plebs just down the road from the capitol and telling them over and over that they got fucked. If you think that Trump didn’t think that the breaking would not have happened then you think trump is an idiot. If you think he knew what would happen, then he is guilty. Those are the only two outcomes for that situation.

  71. I am not a Trump fan, I see him for what he is.
    However, unlike some people, I am not afflicted with the anti TDS syndrome and so I can tell when people are afflicted with either variety of it. I’m am referring to the author of the OP, or course.

    Many Democrats have been speaking in favor of the riots the have been occurring for the past year, but they get a pass because the media is overtly anti-Trump.
    Democrats are exhibiting their totalitarian instincts and it’s time for smart people who write in magazines to focus on that.

    Trump is out. Why bother with him any more?

    1. Trump is out. Why bother with him any more?

      They’ve stated overtly that it’s because he’s out. Apparently it has become Congress’ job to make sure the wrong people don’t get elected according to criteria not-exactly-outlined in The Constitution.

  72. I hope the Dems. at the capitol were scared on Jan. 6, to the point where they lost all bodily control, I hope they’re still scared. They gave tacit and in some cases overt approval to the all the rioting that happened last summer in this country, and when it literally came back to their doorstep they liked it none too much and squealed like stuck pigs. TOO. FUCKING. BAD. ! They reaped what they sowed, and progressives being who they are don’t like facing the consequences of the same things they espouse, go figure. To paraphrase Henry ll, will no one rid us of these turbulent marxists.

  73. Well, the way I saw this event unfold was as follows.
    1.) Trump organized an event near the capitol that attracted thousands of people.
    2.) Thousands of people came to this event.
    3.) Trump spoke and said all the things above that Sullum quoted like
    “We won this election, and we won it by a landslide.”
    “They rigged an election. They rigged it like they’ve never rigged an election before.”
    “Our country has had enough. We will not take it anymore….We will stop the steal.”
    “All of us here today do not want to see our election victory stolen by emboldened radical left Democrats, which is what they’re doing, and stolen by the fake news media. That’s what they’ve done and what they’re doing. We will never give up. We will never concede.”
    “It’s a disgrace. There’s never been anything like that. You could take third world countries….Their elections are more honest than what we’ve been going through in this country. It’s a disgrace. It’s a disgrace.”
    4.) His plebeians marched to the Capitol and broke in. Some were just poking around while others were hunting for Democrats, while still others were just looking for a little souvenir to take home to remember the day the president told them to break in. Oh, and let’s not forget that they were also hunting for Mike Pence.

    So, the questions I have are
    1.) Did Trump know that this event would incite his plebeians to break into the Capitol?
    I think he knew, but his defense seems to think that he had no idea that this would incite the capitol break in. So, either Trump knew exactly what was going to happen. At least any intelligent man would have known. Or he is so stupid that he had no idea his plebs would attack.

    2.) If Trump was just too stupid to know his plebs would attack, then do you really want him for a president?
    I don’t

    3.) Were his plebs just too stupid to know that Trump did not mean for them to go and attack the capital?
    That’s very possible, but Trump himself should have known that it was possible for the plebs to freak out.

    So, is this event worthy of being convicted of his impeachment? I don’t know, I’m no expert on the subject of impeachment. But it sure seems to me like his is guilty of some criminal activity. Maybe impeachment is the wrong thing, maybe he should be arrested and put on trial as a now public citizen for inciting violence. But one thing that is for sure is that he did incite the attack on the capitol of the US.

    1. But one thing that is for sure is that he did incite the attack on the capitol of the US.

      So, round up Antifa and BLM leadership, even if only at the local level and try them too, right? Because when it was attempted during and after those riots at the capitol, Democratic lawmakers secured representation for them and put up bail money. For all the questions about ‘Did Trump know?’ the Democratic legislature’s behavior with regard to Antifa/BLM is that they couldn’t possibly not have known. To the point that there’s video footage of Trump supporters telling capitol police “Antifa/BLM has demonstrated that violence works.”

      1. Oh, was I talking about BLM and Antifa? I don’t think so. Here’s a Trump voter. What about this, What about this, What about this. When the time comes to comment about BLM and Antifa, I’ll probably comment on it. But this is about the coward that we had for a president and how he made his plebs go fight his battles. He incited his plebs to break the law, many many times. He had to of known this would be the outcome of gathering thousands of people near the capitol to preach to them how they got fucked over and over again, Trump said “we got fucked”. and you really think he thought his plebs would just peacefully go home after that? If he did, he is a total and utter idiot. So, he knew it or he is an idiot. There are no possible other outcomes of that day.

    2. With regards to your first question, there is no way he could have possibly known that violence would result. He knew this for several reasons. First, unless you believe insane conspiracy theories about him still being the shadow President and military tribunals occurring behind closed doors, Trump did not pursue any extralegal remedies for his election claims. He did everything by the book, made his claims public, and tried every legal avenue possible that others would grant him. He lead by example; to think that a sitting President who is eligible for re-election would jeopardize that in a manner inconsistent with all prior behavior is asinine and not grounded in reality.

      The rest of your drivel is pointless because you don’t know how to think critically.

      1. Well, I guess if you truly believe that, then that’s your right. But unless he is a total idiot, (Which is a possibility.) He knew that he was gathering thousands of people just a stones throw away from the capitol and he knew they would be angry people. He must have known that if you gather thousands of angry people and tell them things that would make them more angry like, Oh, you and I got fucked. And you repeat that over and over again. Even including Mike Pence as one of those who fucked you and him. And you claim he wouldn’t know that? Critical thinking has nothing to do with what Trump did. It’s more like just common sense.

  74. I expect this comment thread is dead, but I feel compelled to say something.

    Sullum’s arguments are the opposite of what I understand to be a libertarian view. Libertarians believe in free speech and personal responsibility. Under this new theory, anyone who commits a crime based on the inflammatory rhetoric of a political figure isn’t personally responsible. We need the government to protect us from being inflamed! It doesn’t matter if what Trump did was “legal” – apparently the new libertarian standard is whether speech is “irresponsible.” Impeachment is a political act, but a trial is not. Trump lied – or maybe he believes the shit he is shoveling. If he actually believes it to be true, does that change anything here?

    Can anyone explain how Sullum’s arguments are consistent with libertarian principles?

    Also, please explain how Sullum is not applying a double standard here. Were not the riots we saw all summer openly cheered by political leaders?

    I’m getting pretty sick of the LINOs (Libertarian In Name Only) here at reason. Make Nick Gillespie Editor-in-Chief and be done with it. Sullum and Suderman should go get jobs at the WP or The Nation or some other more liberal publication where they can be the quirky kinda-libertarian voice.

    I miss the pre-Trump version of libertarianism. I think it’s alive at Cato and I still love Volokh. Reason should come out as a center-left publication, because most of the time, that’s what it is. And it sucks.

    1. Make Nick Gillespie Editor-in-Chief and be done with it.

      Nick was EIC. I’m not 100% sure of/clear on/care about the order of succession but it was something like Gillespie -> Welch -> Ward. And, AFAICT, Stephanie Slade’s “Republicans Lost Their Sense Of Personal Responsibility: See Trump” is the exact outcome, if not clone of Gillespie’s ideology. Gillespie, rather single-handedly, led the charge in favor of the City of Charlotte when they said that bathroom owners had to let trannies use the bathroom of their choice and the State said “Businesses are privately owned and can do as they wish with their bathrooms.” Sullum and Suderman are the fruit of the tree that Gillespie and Welch knowingly/intentionally labored over.

    2. I’ll make a really easy analogy for you so you can understand.

      Lets say your name is Jim Smith, and you are at the trump rally. You really don’t care for trump so you are standing about 100 yards from the crowd. Then Trump says. I don’t like Jim Smith because he took everything from us. He took your election away. We won, but thanks to Jim Smith, we did not win. He stole it from right under our noses. It’s all his fault that we have nothing now. It’s all gone thanks to Jim Smith.

      Then he spots you 100 yards away, points at you and says “Oh look, there’s Jim Smith standing over there. We need to tell him what we think of him. Many would probably just turn, look and maybe flip you off and start yelling Fuck You. But you can be sure that some will break off from the crowd and approach you. Some may just yell at you, but some will attack. You might live, but you might not. But one thing is for sure, you won’t be able to just walk away.

      Now while trump didn’t really say anything illegal about you. He has the right to say what he wants about you. But you also have to admit that he did create anger towards you to the crowd. After that there was violence. What he said about you was not true because you really took nothing from him or his plebs. But yet you are now the hunted. That’s pretty much what happened at the capitol and it was all because of him. So, that makes him guilty of inciting violence.

      Now then, I’m no LINO. I voted for Jorgensen, did you? Probably not and neither did a lot of libertarians. Does that make you all a LINO? Probably, but who am I to say.

      But one thing we both have in common is that I too miss the pre Trump version of Libertarianism. It was much more Libertarian than it is today.

  75. “Although Trump said his supporters should protest “peacefully,” it was predictable that some of them would go further than that”

    Sullum, you’re the new Shikha. Gold medal for your olympic mental gymnastics, but seriously, seek professional help for your TDS. Imagine if you used this kind of logic on the like of the Squad when they supported the BLM/Antifa rioters. Imagine if the FBI went after the hundreds of thousands of Americans who spent real money to bail said rioters out of jail to continue rioting.

    It was NOT predictable that these people were going to riot. You provide no evidence for your assertion. You’re just a bigoted asshole at this point. Sad.

  76. I was looking for a libertarian news site. Does anyone know of one?

    1. From that majority of the comments here, I think OANN is a great news site for libertarians. It’s all about supporting a republican president. Lot’s of conspiracy theories. Although not so much anymore since the lawsuits started being flying. But it’s still great for those libertarians who refuse to vote for a libertarian candidate. Hey, maybe these folks can even make a new party. Call it Liberpublicans.

  77. Dire harm from Donald Trump’s false and violent incitements will vex American democracy long into the future unless the Senate convicts him of impeachment and bars him from future office, House prosecutors insisted Thursday as they concluded two days of emotional arguments in his historic trial.

    The prosecutors argued the defeated president’s pattern of spreading false and violent rhetoric will continue to affect U.S. politics if left unchecked.

  78. When looking for the incitement for the citizens’ attack on the Capital, I look first at the beyond unresponsive Congress itself, which turned a blind and calloused eye to the numerous reports of voter fraud during the election. The same Congress that wasted 3 1/2 years chasing the futile Trump/Russia hoax predicated on a Hillary concoction found under four separate investigations zero culpability. Now, in the face of copious reports, videos, computer analysis, and thousands of affidavits, Congress and The Swamp adamantly refuses to even acknowledge the Mastodon in the chamber, yet they wonder why the pitchforks are out.

  79. The only thing accomplished by the riot at the Capitol was to interrupt the proposal of an emergency audit and give Democrats an escape route to keep from denying a reasonable plan to restore the confidence of half the country in elections while not interrupting the inauguration. When you consider how well it benefited the Democrats and how seriously it hurt President Trump it seems it could not have been better for Democrats if they had planned it.

  80. “Although Trump said his supporters should protest “peacefully,” it was predictable that some of them would go further than that, especially after Pence publicly stated that he did not have the authority to do what Trump wanted.”
    So his actual calls for a peaceful march don’t matter because the alleged existence of cryptic calls for violence hidden in between these calls overrides this statement, correct? Makes sense to me.
    This guy has a hardcore case of TDS. He is also a fake libertarian. No real libertarian would ever claim that speech that does not have an explicit call for violence should be construed as “inciting” anything. Politicians make idiotic and hyperbolic claims all of the time, but they are not responsible for the actions people who take them seriously commit.xThose idiots who did what they did are adults and are responsible for their own actions. AOC said Cruz tried to have her murdered. If one of her supporters was dumb enough to take her statement at face value and use this to justify attacking Cruz, AOC would not be responsible for this. She has a right to say ridiculous things, and so does Trump. Real libertarians know this.

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