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Who are the impeachment managers prosecuting Trump’s second Senate trial?

House impeachment managers on Feb. 10 made the case that President Donald Trump spent months laying the groundwork for January’s riot at the Capitol. (Video: Mahlia Posey/The Washington Post)
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To prosecute the article of impeachment against former president Donald Trump, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) named nine impeachment managers — House members who are presenting the case against Trump to the Senate.

The impeachment managers are taking turns prosecuting the case, similar to how lawyers would in a courtroom. Their job: to prove Trump incited the in at the Capitol on Jan. 6 that sought to prevent the counting of the 2020 election results.

So far, they have gone into detail on Trump’s comments leading up to Jan. 6 and what happened that day inside the Capitol, using powerful and chilling audio and video clips to take the Senate, and the American public, inside critical moments.

They have a total of 16 hours to present their case. Trump’s lawyers will later mount a defense.

None of the impeachment managers of 2020 are back this time. The new group of nine is led by Rep. Jamie B. Raskin (D-Md.). All of them are lawyers, many former litigators.

Rep. Jamie B. Raskin (D-Md.), Lead House impeachment manager

Why Pelosi picked him: Raskin began drafting articles of impeachment against Trump the morning after the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol. The Maryland congressman’s son Thomas had died by suicide just a week earlier, and Raskin told The Post that memories of his son are his source of strength.

“I felt him in my heart and in my chest,” Raskin said. “All the way through the counting of the electoral college votes and through the nightmare of the armed attack on the Capitol.”

Impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) reads the article of impeachment on Jan. 25 charging former president Donald Trump with inciting the Jan. 6 riots. (Video: The Washington Post)

Raskin, who spent more than a quarter-century teaching constitutional law at American University, drafted both a resolution asking Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office, and an article of impeachment charging Trump with inciting the insurrection.

Impeachment is familiar territory for Raskin; when House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler was unable to attend a Rules Committee meeting during Trump’s first impeachment, Raskin took his place, testifying for hours on the Democrats’ case. He was on the Judiciary Committee as members discussed the merits of Trump’s 2019 impeachment charges and questioned witnesses.

This time, the constitutional law professor and frequent Trump critic has been out front in articulating why Democrats believe Trump’s second impeachment was justified, and why they think he should be convicted by the Senate. Pelosi is counting on him to start and finish Democrats’ argument.

During the Feb. 9 impeachment trial, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) talked about having his family present at the Capitol on the day of the insurrection. (Video: The Washington Post)

His big moment in the trial so far: “When they were finally rescued, over an hour later, by Capitol officers, and we were together, I hugged them, and I apologized, and I told my daughter Tabitha, who’s 24 and a brilliant algebra teacher in Teach for America now, I told her how sorry I was. And I promised her that it would not be like this again, the next time she came back to the Capitol with me. And you know what she said? She said, ‘Dad, I don’t want to come back to the Capitol.’

“Of all the terrible, brutal things I saw and I heard on that day, and since then, that one hit me the hardest. That and watching someone use an American flagpole, with the flag still on it, to spear and pummel one of our police officers ruthlessly, mercilessly. Tortured by a pole with a flag on it that he was defending with his very life.

“People died that day. Officers ended up with head damage and brain damage. People’s eyes were gouged. An officer had a heart attack. An officer lost three fingers that day. Two officers have taken their own lives. Senators, this cannot be our future. This cannot be the future of America.”

Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.)

Why Pelosi picked her: Put simply, Pelosi trusts her during important moments. DeGette was tapped to preside over the House debate during Trump’s first impeachment, a moment Pelosi wanted to get right procedurally, and for the cameras. She’s served as Democrats’ chief deputy whip three times, so she knows the caucus well,

DeGette has been in Congress for a while; she just started her 13th term in office. She was previously a civil rights lawyer — another litigator on Pelosi’s list.

Her big moment in the trial so far: Already [Republicans] are saying we shouldn’t have a trial, even though the precedent is clear that you can have an impeachment trial after somebody leaves office. So I’m sure that we’ll hear all kinds of arguments, but I know that the trial will be fair … the evidence is so clear in this case. We have everything, pretty much, on TV.”

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.)

Why Pelosi probably picked him: Swalwell has been a visible Trump critic for a long time — since way before the inquiry that led to Trump’s first impeachment in 2019. A member of both the Intelligence and Judiciary committees, Swalwell was front and center the last time the impeachment process played out.

He’s a former prosecutor, and is in his fifth term in Congress. He sought the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, is prolific on social media and a frequent cable news guest, so his national profile is higher than most others on this list.

His big moment in the trial so far: Those of you who were here that day will recall that once you left the Senate floor, you moved through a hallway to get to safety. That hallway was near where Officer Goodman had encountered a mob, and led them upstairs, and away from the Senate chamber. You know how close you came to the mob. Some of you, I understand, could hear them. But most of the public does not understand how close these rioters came to you.

“As you were moving through that hallway — I paced it off — you were just 58 steps from where the mob was amassing and where police were rushing to stop them.”

Rep. David N. Cicilline (D-R.I.)

Why Pelosi probably picked him: Cicilline is a former D.C. public defender who has been in Congress for more than a decade and is on the Judiciary Committee. The Rhode Island congressman, who when sworn in became only the fourth openly gay person elected to Congress, was also on the Judiciary Committee for Trump’s last impeachment, and helped write the article of impeachment with Reps. Raskin and Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) this time around.

His big moment in the trial so far: “The attack on the Capitol was not solely the work of extremists lurking in the shadows. And indeed, does anyone in this chamber honestly believe that but for the conduct of President pen that [is] the charge in the articles of impeachment, that the attack on the Capitol would have occurred? Does anyone believe that?

“And now his lawyers will come before you and insist that even as the Capitol is still surrounded with barbed wire and fences and soldiers, that we should just move on and let bygones be bygones, and allow Trump to walk away without any accountability, any reckoning, any consequences? That cannot be right. That is not unity.”

Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.)

Why Pelosi probably picked her: Dean, a Pennsylvania congresswoman, has said repeatedly that she believes there should be consequences for Trump’s actions. A member of the Judiciary Committee and former lawyer, Dean was on the House floor when protesters stormed the building Jan. 6. She’s one of the newer members of Congress on Pelosi’s list, serving her second term, and was part of the wave of swing-district members who won in 2018, giving Pelosi the majority back.

Her big moment in the trial so far: “He says it right there — the president of the United States telling a public official to manufacture the exact votes needed so he can win. Senators, we must not become numb to this. Trump did this across state after state — so often, so loudly, so publicly. Public officials like you and me received death threats and calls threatening criminal penalties all because Trump wanted to remain in power.”

On Jan. 24, the day before an impeachment article was set to be sent to the Senate, lawmakers discussed the upcoming trial for former president Donald Trump. (Video: Amber Ferguson/The Washington Post)

Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Tex.)

Why Pelosi probably picked him: Castro follows a familiar theme in Pelosi’s picks: Members who sat on the committees that took the lead investigating Trump’s first impeachment. Castro is on the House Intelligence Committee, and like others on this list is a former litigator.

Castro’s twin brother Julian ran for president in the 2020 cycle, and the two are some of the more visible Democrats in Texas politics. Rep. Castro called for the resignation of Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz over his continued objections to the election results.

His big moment in the trial so far: “[Trump] truly made his base believe that the only way he could lose was if the election was rigged. And senators, all of us know, and all of us understand how dangerous that is for our country. Because the most combustible thing you can do in a democracy is convince people that an election doesn’t count, that their voice and their vote don’t count, and that it’s all been stolen, especially if what you’re saying are lies. … And let’s be clear, President Trump knew that you can’t just stop counting votes, but he wanted to inflame his base.”

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.)

Why Pelosi picked him: Lieu is the third member of this list to have helped author the impeachment article against Trump, working with Reps. Raskin and Cicilline. A former active duty Air Force officer who served as a prosecutor in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps, Lieu is an experienced lawyer and litigator.

Lieu reportedly started texting Judiciary Committee colleagues about drafting impeachment articles against Trump while the Capitol siege was ongoing.

His big moment in the trial so far: “In his desperation, [Trump] turned on his own vice president. He pressured Mike Pence to violate his constitutional oath and to refuse to certify the [election]. President Trump had decided that Vice President Pence, who presided over the certification, could somehow stop it. … Even after the Capitol was attacked, even after he was personally targeted, even after his family was targeted, Vice President Pence stood strong and certified the election. Vice President Pence showed us what it means to be an American, what it means to show courage. He put his country, his oath, his values and his morals above the will of one man.”

Rep. Stacey Plaskett (D-U.S. Virgin Islands)

Why Pelosi picked her: Plaskett is a nonvoting member of Congress who represents the U.S. Virgin Islands. Though she didn’t have a vote in actually impeaching Trump, Plaskett is an experienced lawyer who has worked both as an assistant district attorney in the Bronx DA’s office and as a senior counsel at the Department of Justice.

Her big moment in the trial so far: “That mob, at the president’s direction, erupted into the bloodiest attack on this Capitol since 1814. Some of you have said there’s no way the president could have known how violent the mob would be. That is false, because the violence — it was foreseeable. … The violence that occurred on Jan. 6, just like the attack itself, did not just appear.”

Rep. Joe Neguse (D-Colo.)

Why Pelosi picked him: Neguse is a rising star among House Democrats, serving in his second term. He’s already in the lower levels of the Democratic leadership, working on a committee that hones Democratic messaging. Crafting an argument around why Trump should be convicted, both to the public and to Republican senators, is why the impeachment managers are there to begin with. At 36, he’ll be the youngest lawmaker ever to serve as an impeachment manager in a Senate trial.

His big moment in the trial so far: “What you experienced that day, what we experienced that day, what our country experienced that day, is the Framers’ worst nightmare come to life. Presidents can’t inflame insurrection in their final weeks and then walk away like nothing happened. And yet, that is the rule President Trump asks you to adopt. I urge you, we urge you, to decline his request, to vindicate the Constitution.”

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