One of former President Donald Trump’s impeachment defense attorneys just mopped the floor with those in the mainstream media who he says are “bloodthirsty for ratings.”
In the hours after the Senate voted to acquit Trump in the second impeachment trial against him, Trump lawyer Michael van der Veen got into a heated exchange with CBS News host Lana Zak over the media’s failure to tell “the right story,” the Washington Examiner reported.
“What happened at the Capitol on Jan. 6 is absolutely horrific. But what happened at the Capitol during this trial was not too far away from that,” van der Veen said Saturday, as the Examiner reported.
“Prosecutors in this case doctored evidence,” he charged. “They did not investigate this case, and when they had to come to the court of the Senate to put their case on, because they had not done any investigation, they doctored evidence. It was absolutely shocking. I think when we discovered it and were able to expose it and put it out, I think it turned a lot of senators.”
“That’s not enough for you?”
It was after Zak pushed back on van der Veen’s claims of “doctored evidence” that he launched into his tirade. The lawyer was specifically referring with that remark to the fact that the House impeachment managers included in their “evidence” during the trial photo of a tweet on which they appeared to add a checkmark that would indicate the post came from a “verified” user on Twitter. The designation is typically reserved for public figures.
“To be clear for our viewers, what you’re talking about now is a checkmark, a verification on Twitter that did not exist on that particular tweet 2020 that should have actually read 2021. And the selective editing, you say, of the tapes,” Zak said, as the Examiner reported. “Is that…the doctored evidence of what you’re speaking?”
“Wait, that’s not enough for you? That’s not enough for you?” van der Veen shot back, according to a transcript from CBS. “Wait, wait, wait. No, no, no.”
“Telling the right story”
Zak challenged that she simply “want[ed] to be clear for our viewers about what exactly you’re saying when you say ‘doctored evidence.'” But van der Veen wasn’t having it.
“The media has to start telling the right story in this country,” he said, according to the transcript. “The media is trying to divide this country. You are bloodthirsty for ratings. And as such, you’re asking questions now that are already set up with a fact pattern.”
Van der Veen went on: “I can’t believe you would ask me a question indicating that it’s all right just to doctor a little bit of evidence. There’s more stuff that we uncovered that they doctored, to be frank with you. And perhaps that will come out one day.”
The segment ended with van der Veen taking his microphone off and tossing it on the ground. Take a look for yourself: