Wednesday, January 29, 2020

On Dershowitz’s Argument Before The Senate In Trump’s Impeachment Trial


‪addendum.  I realized I'm not sympathetic.  My guess is he knew what was coming, ie not serious criticism but insults, etc, and would have been disappointed by silence.  And Trump had no need of him.  The fact that he made the opposite argument (so I read, maybe not) re Clinton is also not charming.  I know he thought more deeply this time, etc.  but he should not have gone ahead given that.  He likes (needs?) the limelight.  ‬
‪Yes, none of this says his arguments aren't right or interesting, but . . . ‬

‪I assume you mean you’re not sympathetic to Dershowitz.‬

‪That like a moth he’s attracted to the flame of notoriety is neither here nor there save at least for one aspect: he has the substance to merit the attention, which is to say, he’s not an empty suit being celebrated for being celebrated. He’s got a brilliant legal mind and what says needs to be paid heed to, agree or disagree. ‬

‪There has not been one presentation in what I’ve seen of the Senate trial, some of it, that can approach in range and depth and analytic brilliance and passion too that of Dershowitz. Except to some extent Ken Starr, So other than the point on substance, that he has a large ego is beside all points that I can think of.‬

‪ How can you say that Trump had no need of him? What analysis have you made of what’s going on that leads you to this conclusion? Some of the most reputed lawyers in America who’ve shaped the defence team thought differently than you, as did Trump. I see Trump’s defence as a coherent whole, in which Dershowitz’s argument played a significant part both substantively and strategically. ‬

‪Your notion—that Dershowitz has changed his mind as to what he argued 20 some years ago is not “charming”—is beyond bizarre. What does what’s charming or not charming have to do with anything?‬

‪ Dershowitz, a constitutional scholar, before this impeachment exercise began, evolved in his thinking about the need for criminality to ground impeachment. Where is the relevance of charm? ‬

‪He made his evolved thinking publicly clear before this exercise began. Where is the relevance of charm? ‬

‪Trump’s lawyers asked him to join their team to argue his changed view and he agreed. Where is the relevance of charm? ‬

‪He made a brilliant and effective presentation, agree or disagree. Where is the relevance of charm? ‬

‪He confronted in his presentation the fact that some two decades ago he argued to the contrary but has come to new judgments about the issue after further research and reflection. Where is the relevance of charm? ‬

‪And same questions on the idea that he shouldn’t have gone ahead this time—an even odder proposition. ‬

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