Speed Reads

impeachment round 2

Alan Dershowitz tells Newsmax Trump's defense lawyer is bombing

Add Alan Dershowitz to the list of people who have "no idea" what former President Donald Trump's lawyer was doing during his impeachment trial opening argument.

Dershowitz, who was a member of Trump's defense team during his first impeachment trial, spoke with the conservative network Newsmax on Tuesday in the middle of remarks from defense lawyer Bruce Castor, and he panned the opening for its seeming lack of a clear point.

"There is no argument," Dershowitz, who shook his head as Newsmax cut to him, said. "I have no idea what he's doing. I have no idea why he's saying what he's saying."

Dershowitz seemed particularly bewildered by the amount of time Castor spent praising lawmakers, as when he declared that senators are "extraordinary people" and "patriots." The meandering remarks sparked confusion among pundits as to what Castor was going for, though some Trump allies claimed he was executing an intentional strategy to "reduce the emotion in the room," as The New York Times' Maggie Haberman wrote.

But Dershowitz told Newsmax, "I just don't understand it. Maybe he'll bring it home. But right now, it does not appear to me to be effective advocacy ... It's not the kind of argument I would have made, I have to tell you that." Newsmax host Bob Sellers sounded equally confused, asking of Trump's lawyer, "Is he forgetting that this is on TV?" Brendan Morrow