February 10, 2021

Former President Donald Trump’s impeachment lawyer, Bruce Castor, apparently had a bad day at work. Even in the midst of his opening statement during the first day of Trump’s impeachment trial Feb. 9, he was skewered on social media.

Veteran journalist Dan Rather tweeted, “I’ve seen more clarity in a mud puddle.”

CNN correspondent Omar Jimenez tweeted, “I’m no lawyer, but not even a cat filter could save Bruce Castor right now.”

Even pro-Trump outlets like Newsmax questioned Castor’s job. Newsmax did something rare: It broke into Castor’s remarks just so attorney Alan Dershowitz, who was on Trump’s first impeachment defense team, could blast him.

Dershowitz said, “There is no argument. I have no idea what he’s doing. I have no idea why he’s saying what he’s saying!”

He went on to say, “Maybe he’ll bring it home, but right now, it does not appear to me to be effective advocacy. He may know the senators better than I do. Maybe they want to be buttered up. Maybe they want to be told what great people they are and how he knows two senators. But, boy, it’s not the kind of argument I would have made, I have to tell you that.”

Newsmax anchor Bob Sellers, almost comically, said, “Is he forgetting that this is on TV? You’re not just playing to the senators. You’re playing to a lot of people in their living rooms.”

This piece originally appeared in The Poynter Report, our daily newsletter for everyone who cares about the media. Subscribe to The Poynter Report here.

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Tom Jones is Poynter’s senior media writer for He was previously part of the Tampa Bay Times family during three stints over some 30…
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