Could Democrats’ arguments in Trump’s 2nd impeachment sway Republicans to convict?

House impeachment managers showed never-before-seen footage of the Capitol insurrection as part of their argument that Donald Trump incited an insurrection. Experts discuss.
5:01 | 02/11/21

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Transcript for Could Democrats’ arguments in Trump’s 2nd impeachment sway Republicans to convict?
We're looking for you! A capitol insurrectionist taunting house speaker Nancy Pelosi. The vice president whisked way to a secure location. Some of the dramatic new video shown at the trump impeachment trial today. To down the evidence presented by the impeachment prosecutors, earlier this evening I spoke with Republican strategist Sara Fagen and democratic strategist and Hillary Clinton's former national political director Amanda Renteria. Thank both for joining us. Amman da, the new footage shows just how close the mob was to closing in on vice president pence, representatives, and senators, including those who are jurors now. What was the most dramatic part presented today, and what impact might it have on the trial, do you think? I think when you see how close they were, when you see Romney running, when you see the timeline and officer Goodman moving people in different directions, that hits a different chord for a lot of these senators, including Romney, who had never known he was that close to it. I think reliving it in a way where you almost see yourself in that moment brings back a sense of just emotional reach into folks. And I think one of the most important things is that everyone felt it. It wasn't Democrats, it wasn't Republicans, it was that full body who experienced that together and really, today was about bringing it together, watching it together, and recognizing that this was an unusual moment for everybody with all that emotion. Sara, this wasn't just about evidence, it was about the emotion of the day. So could any of today's dramatic evidence sway Republicans to change their minds on convicting trump? I think it might sway some. I don't think it's probably going to sway 17, enough to convict the former president. However, look. It's -- the evidence to date has been very damning for trump. We've seen a drop in the number of Republicans who think he should seek office in 2024. So this has had a very negative impact on him. And as each day passes and as more evidence is put forward, I think it's likely to stick longer and really potentially change the way the Republican party looks at Donald Trump. Amman da, it's been widely publicized how only a handful of Republicans are inclined to vote for impeachment. A hypothetical question. What will this vote look like if this were a secret ballot? Especially after today? You know, I think -- we saw what happened in the house when things were a secret ballot, that is people are able to put it out there and recognize there's not going to be any consequences. I do think it makes a difference. I do think, you know -- when you really put all the facts together, even in the story today, if you take trump out of the scenario, it's hard to imagine this would happen. And I think that is also going to weigh on people's minds. But listen, when you have a public vote, there are consequences to that. As we've already seen, including hearing saying "Hang pence." It has to be on your mind that, what if you vote a certain way, what's going to happen to you and your family? I think that's a really scary notion and idea. But it's got to be on people's minds right now as everyone's tuning in. Sara, is today's visceral presentation by house managers, wasn't only seen by house senators but millions of how's it playing, do you think, in the court of public opinion? Look, I think trump has taken a huge hit over what happened on the 6th, and I think it just gets worse as this trial goes on. You know, at the same time, we live in a very different era than we did the last time there was an impeachment trial. Donald Trump is off Twitter. And that is a huge thing. Because he's getting so much less coverage. And, you know, with all of that going on, is having an impact, but I don't know if it will have a sustained impact. And final question to you both. What's a win for Democrats without getting a conviction? Laying out what happened, laying out that this can't happen again, and making sure to really send the message that, we are now unifying and moving forward. I think that's a huge, important moment for Democrats as this -- as we come out of this, that Democrats and Republicans, particularly in the senate, are actually going to move forward together. Sara, what, if anything, would be a win for Republicans? In many respects, I think Republicans want this to go O go away as quickly as possible. And being able to say, well, this wasn't constitutional, I'm getting out on a process argument, whatever one thinks of that, is really at this point, I think, the best outcome Republican senators have. It seems like most parties in Washington want this to be over soon enough. Sara, Amanda, thank you both for your time, see you down the road.

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