According to Bannon, the South Carolina lawyers bailed on Trump because of their adherence to a concept promoted by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Sen. Lindsey Graham that suggests ignoring the “heart of the issue” — purported widespread electoral fraud — and focusing on arguing due process.
“According to the Graham Strategy, as long as you don’t throw in the face of the do-nothing establishment their own failure protect the people, defend the constitution and deliver a fair election, Trump will avoid conviction,” Bannon said.
“Trump now sees the absurdity of this argument — especially when Jamie Raskin is producing a three-day beat down of the president. McConnell wants the beat down, has actively encouraged the beat down. He is terrified of a real defense of the President.”
As reported by The Hill, McConnell previously expressed openness to voting to convict Trump in the forthcoming Senate trial. However, the publication claimed that he “made a series of moves” ahead of the vote on Rand Paul’s motion to declare the case unconstitutional that were designed to help it succeed. Although it ultimately failed, the outlet argued that McConnell’s moves helped “quash the Senate trial before it even begins.”
Bannon claimed that the majority of Republicans have concluded that President Joe Biden’s victory was “illegitimate” and said that Trump should defend himself in front of the upper chamber lawmakers using “evidence” of the purported coverup of the stolen election. According to the former White House strategist, Trump is the only person who can make this argument.
The legal proceedings are set to start in early February, and Trump has allegedly told his advisers and aides that he would rather represent himself than spend money on legal representation.
CNN legal analyst Elie Honig on Sunday pointed to reporting that suggested Trump pressured his defense team to craft a case around the unsubstantiated claim that Democrats stole the election from him. The analyst also noted that lawyers typically don’t quit on clients without a legitimate reason and suggested that Trump’s fixation on alleged electoral fraud was the reason for their departure.
According to Honig — a former federal prosecutor — he would have removed himself from the team as well if he were pressured to create a case around purported electoral fraud. Nevertheless, Honig suggested that he would be comfortable making arguments that claim it’s unconstitutional to impeach a former head of state.