One of the more baffling moments of the frequently baffling defense offered up by Trump's impeachment team was an extended rant on "lawyer lawsuits" delivered by Trump personal lawyer and co-conspirator to crimes Jay Sekulow. Nobody could figure out what he was going on about. Here’s a taste:
“Lawyer lawsuits? We’re talking about the impeachment of a president of the United States, duly elected, and the managers are complaining about lawyer lawsuits? The Constitution allows lawyer lawsuits. It’s disrespecting the Constitution of the United States to even say that in this chamber. Lawyer lawsuits.”
It now looks like Sekulow's whole rant was based on him completely mishearing House manager Val Demings. So naturally Team Trump is, rather than admitting that, doubling down on Sekulow's newly discovered bonnet-bug. Of course.
What House manager Demings was talking about, in her own speech, was "FOIA lawsuits" (commonly pronounced as FOY-uh). She was referring, of course, to the Freedom of Information Act-based lawsuits that have secured redacted government documents that the administration attempted to hide from the public. The Washington Post and reporter Igor Bobic, however, report that White House legislative affairs director Eric Ueland insisted that Sekulow did not mishear and that "lawyer lawsuits" was a real thing. The transcript "says 'lawyer lawsuit,'" claimed Ueland.
Wait, what transcript? We don't know. Neither of the ones the Post looked at contained such a phrase, and there is certainly a distinct possibility that Ueland is, like the Trump White House continues to do on a daily and hourly basis, simply lying about it. Inventing a new hand-waving outrage out of thin air, refusing to acknowledge those who point out it is incorrect or manufactured, and then angrily insisting the new invention is in fact a great travesty and a shameful, shameful moment for Dear Leader's critics is exactly what Trump's team would do, because it is what Trump's team did throughout the night, over and over.
Republicans were not allowed to witness "secret" House depositions, they insisted. They not only were allowed, but did. Donald Trump was not allowed to present a defense, they shouted to senators. The House invited the White House to send a legal team, produce a defense, and produce documents for that defense; Trump's legal team refused. Republicans were not allowed their own witnesses, they claimed; House Republicans produced multiple witnesses, who were questioned and cross-examined on live television. These were not mischaracterizations. They were lies about recent, extremely televised, extremely reported-on public happenings that we all witnessed.
While Republican senators prattle on about the supposed dignity of their chamber, the Trump legal team lying to the Senate outright about matters in clear public view has resulted in exactly zero outrage from those lawmakers. We can infer from that that they both expect to be lied to and, in fact, are counting on it. It doesn't matter what Trump's "legal team" comes up with during their own presentations. Jay Sekulow can simply invent new words and phrases and scream at the Senate about the outrage they represent, and most of the Republican senators will nod their heads and vote ... exactly like they intended to from the first moment.