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The 1/6 sedition riot hangs on Trump

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Not that the facts are relevant to whether Trump gets convicted by the Senate, but there’s not actually any question about whether Trump caused the assault on the Capitol:

Storming the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 was no spur-of-the-moment decision for Jessica Marie Watkins, an Ohio bartender and founder of a small, self-styled militia, federal prosecutors allege.

In documents charging her with conspiracy and other crimes for her role in the insurrection, they say she began planning such an operation shortly after former president Donald Trump lost the November election, ultimately helping recruit and allegedly helping lead dozens of people who took violent action to try to stop congressional certification of the electoral college vote last month.

In text messages cited in court documents, Watkins was clear about why she was heading to Washington. “Trump wants all able bodied patriots to come,” she wrote to one of her alleged co-conspirators on Dec. 29, eight days before prosecutors say they invaded the building.

The question of what exactly motivated Watkins and other alleged rioters — and when their plans took shape — will be among the central questions of Trump’s impeachment trial this week, when the Senate will consider whether to convict the former president on charges that he incited the crowd to attack the Capitol.

The nine House impeachment managers leading Trump’s prosecution made clear in an 80-page brief filed last week that they will argue that his role in inspiring the crowd to action began long before the 70-minute speech he gave that day.

They assert that the violence was virtually inevitable after Trump spent months falsely claiming that the election had been stolen from him.

“He amplified these lies at every turn, seeking to convince supporters that they were victims of a massive electoral conspiracy that threatened the Nation’s continued existence,” the House impeachment managers wrote.

After refusing to take the “honorable path” and admit defeat in the election, they wrote, Trump “summoned a mob to Washington, exhorted them into a frenzy and aimed them like a loaded cannon down Pennsylvania Avenue.”

He wanted it to happen, he ensured that it happened, and it’s a disgrace and farce that virtually the entire Republican Senate conference thinks it’s perfectly fine if he runs for president again.

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