- Texas Senator Ted Cruz revealed on his podcast Friday that he advised Trump’s lawyers.
- Cruz, a juror in the trial, said he told them they “already won.”
- The Senate is expected to acquit former President Donald Trump later Saturday.
- Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.
Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas, said during an episode of his podcast that he advised former President Donald Trump’s defence attorneys ahead of the impeachment trial, telling them they’d “already won” their case on behalf of the former president.
“I said, look, you’ve gotta remember you’ve already won,” Cruz said during a Friday episode of “Verdict,” his podcast that launched in 2020 during the former president’s first impeachment trial.
CNN previously reported that three GOP senators, including Cruz, had met with Trump’s legal team ahead of the Senate trial that began this week.
Cruz said he believed that Democrats were far from achieving the 67 votes needed to convict, and instead said he told the president’s lawyers there were anywhere from 53 to 57 votes to convict the former president, which would lead to an acquittal.
“My opening advice was don’t do anything to screw it up,” Cruz said. “Don’t piss anyone off.”
The Texas Republican said he told the ex-president’s lawyers to “be calm,” “be reasonable,” and “be rational,” and said he believed the president’s lawyers at times “got a little hot” and “a little angry.”
Sen Ted Cruz (despite being a juror in this case) shares the advice he gave to Trump's lawyers: "What I started out saying…is I said, look, you gotta remember you've already won" pic.twitter.com/NjnJkJxMFJ
— Jason Campbell (@JasonSCampbell) February 13, 2021
Cruz said he told the former president’s legal team, which includes the widely criticised Bruce Castor Jr., to treat their defence of Trump “more like an appellate argument” before the Supreme Court and less like a typical jury trial, despite the fact that senators, including Cruz, act as a jury.
He added he believed the House impeachment managers had been successful in making their case, which he argued rested “90%” on an effective emotional retelling of the January 6 riot, including the overpowering of Capitol Police and the death of officer Brian Sicknick, who died as a result of injuries sustained at the riot.
“I’ve gotta say they did it powerfully,” Cruz said. “The Democrats have some good trial lawyers, have some good storytellers, so as they told that story over and over again, it was powerful and effective.”
“My advice to Trump’s lawyers was to disagree with none of it. Look, yes we agree â€” everyone in this jury, all the senators were here that day,” he continued. “It was a horrific terrorist attack, it was despicable, and anyone who committed crimes of violence should be prosecuted and locked up a long long time. And so don’t argue with them.”
The Senate is expected to vote Saturday, bringing an end to Trump’s second impeachment trial that was sparked by his tweets and statements that led up to the deadly insurrection by his supporters. Trump is the only president to have ever been impeached twice, but, like his first trial last year, is expected to be acquitted.
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