The Democrats continue to persecute President Trump

President Trump has been gone from office for a week now, but the Democrats are determined to impeach him nonetheless, something the Constitution does not countenance.  They are so determined that they are going forward with proceedings even though 45 Republican senators have indicated that they will not vote to impeach Trump.

Art. II, Sec. 4 of the Constitution states who can be impeached:

The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

Any sentient being, a category that apparently does not include Democrats, will have noted that "former president" is not on the list of people subject to the impeachment process.  Lacking sentience, Democrats in the House drafted and voted on articles of impeachment and duly delivered them to the Senate.

There's an excellent argument to be made that, because Trump no longer falls within the category of official who can be impeached, what we are seeing here is an unconstitutional bill of attainder.  A bill of attainder occurs when Congress acts as a court and declares a person guilty of a crime.  At Art. I, Sec. 9, the Constitution explicitly denies Congress the power to do so: "No Bill of Attainder ... shall be passed."  However, the Democrats are no longer constrained by Constitution, so...whatever.

Rand Paul forced a point of order on the constitutionality of impeachment.  All 50 Democrats supported impeachment, as did five Republicans: Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Ben Sasse, Pat Toomey, and Mitt Romney.  The remaining 45 Republican senators were sufficiently intelligent and constitutionally literate to vote against impeachment.  As Rand Paul said, after that vote, the impeachment, which requires a two-thirds majority vote, was "dead on arrival."

The Democrats charge President Trump with seditiously inciting a riot.  The facts do not support this charge.  Well in advance of the January 6 "Stop the Steal" rally, agitators planned to enter the Capitol.  On January 6, while Trump was still giving his speech to a vast, entirely peaceful crowd, and before he made any mention of the Capitol, the same group of agitators were acting on their plan.

When Trump finally mentioned the Capitol, he asked only that his supporters "peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard."  When those same supporters arrived at the Capitol, the police welcomed them in.  A very small number of people violently assaulted Capitol Police officers, lowering themselves to the level of Antifa and BLM.

A currently unidentified person shot Ashli Babbitt.  Although Democrats have used her death as a cudgel against Trump, everything about her death and about her has disappeared.  We've heard nothing about a funeral or a death certificate, and the shooter has not been identified.  Guesses as to the male shooter's identity range from a Secret Service agent to a Capitol Hill police officer to a congressman.

These facts cannot justify a guilty verdict against Trump for his words and actions vis-à-vis the Capitol on January 6.  This means that the real crime will be Trump's daring to argue that massive, old-fashioned election fraud (cemetery votes, faked mail-in ballots, late votes, secretive vote counts, etc.) was how a demented, corrupt, debauched old man who didn't campaign got more votes than any presidential candidate in American history.

In theory, Trump ought to be given the chance to place before Congress all the evidence showing fraud in the election.  However, that's not likely to happen.  Chief Justice Roberts bowed out of presiding over the impeachment because he presides only when presidents are impeached (Art. I, Sec. 3).  In his place, the "judge" will be Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), an unusually partisan politician.  (Although Leahy ended up in the hospital after swearing in the senators as "jurors," he's back home.)

Back in 1991, Leahy was the first member of the Judiciary Committee to announce a vote against Clarence Thomas because he didn't like the way Thomas viewed the Constitution.  In other words, Thomas respected it; Leahy didn't.  In 2018, Leahy was against Kavanaugh from the get-go, accused him of receiving stolen emails, and believed Christine Blowsy-Fraud's risible allegations against Kavanaugh.  That belief means that Leahy is so partisan that he's blind to the truth or that he's really, most sincerely stupid.  (Both are also a possibility.)

Ultimately, this is political theater.  While Biden signs one executive order after another tearing apart the economy, breeding racial strife, destroying the border, weakening the military, striking a deathblow to feminism, and inviting China into every aspect of America, the Democrats strut across the stage in a farcical performance meant to rivet the media and prevent Americans from seeing what's really happening.

Image: Senate impeachment proceedings.  YouTube screen grab.