John Eastman, named “Co-Conspiritor 2” in Trump’s third indictment, repeated claims that the elections were stolen and cited the Declaration of Independence to defend the former president’s actions to support efforts that led to January 6.
The lawyer is not charged, but he appears in the indictment
Eastman does not appear in the indictment by name, but his attorney confirmed to several outlets that his client appears in the documents as “Co-Conspirator 2.”
Trump pleaded “not guilty”
Trump was arraigned in a Washington, D.C., court, where he pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, conspiracy against rights, and obstruction of an official proceeding.
Eastman gave an interview
The prominent Republican lawyer gave an interview to the Chairman of the Claremont Institute’s Board of Directors, Tom Klingenstein. The three-part interview was published in full on the day of Trump’s D.C. arraignment.
Eastman told Klingenstein that 2020 represented an “existential threat to the very survivability, not just of our nation, but of the example that our nation, properly understood, provides to the world.”
Citing the Declaration of Independence
“There’s actually a provision in the Declaration of Independence that a people will suffer abuses while they remain sufferable, tolerable while they remain tolerable,” Eastman said. “At some point, abuses become so intolerable that it becomes not only their right but their duty to alter or abolish the existing government.”
He then said that the question was, “Have the abuses or the threat of abuses become so intolerable that we have to be willing to push back?”
The interview was recorded before Trump’s third indictment
The first part was published in June, and in this portion of the interview, Eastman repeated his belief that the elections in 2020 were stolen. In the second part, Eastman discusses what he saw as the legal remedy, while the third part answers Klingenstein’s questions “Should you and the president have pursued that legal remedy?”
Trump’s defense and Eastman
John Lauro, an attorney defending Trump, singled out Eastman in an interview with NBC’s “TODAY.” Lauro said, “What President Trump had was an actual opinion of counsel that his request to Vice President Pence was completely lawful and completely constitutional.” He continued, “You’re entitled to believe and trust the advice of counsel,” Lauro said, adding, “You had one of the leading constitutional scholars in the U.S., John Eastman, say to President Trump, ‘This is a protocol that you can follow, it’s legal.’” The lawyer for Trump added, “That eliminates criminal intent.”
Eastman’s attorney released a statement
In a statement, Eastman’s legal team said that Smith’s D.C. indictment “relies on a misleading presentation of the record to contrive criminal charges against Presidential candidate Trump and to cast ominous aspersions on his close advisors.”
Eastman will appeal
Further, it said, “The fact is, if Dr. Eastman is indicted, he will go to trial. If convicted, he will appeal.” It concluded, “The Eastman legal team is confident of its legal position in this matter.”
No plea deal
With respect to questions as to whether Dr. Eastman is involved in plea bargaining, the answer is no,” the statement from the Colorado lawyer’s legal team read.
The statement continued
It continued, “But if he were invited to plea bargain with either state or federal prosecutors, he would decline.” Watch the interview on Youtube.
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