So for the last week, we've been watching all of this and some of the more cynical among us have dismissed the impeachment trial as a hollow political stunt.'

It's something like a network entertainment division must have cooked up, they say. It's a bad reality show.


But we're traditionalists here, so we've resisted that view. What this is really about --and we told you this Wednesday night -- is foreign policy. It's about Ukraine -- that noble, windswept Eastern European nation that is our single greatest ally in the world, maybe our only real ally.

If Ukraine wants it, we provide it. That's the rule, as they've explained in the Senate. All decent Americans stand with Ukraine.

Now, for a moment, President Trump seemed to falter in his moral duty to stand with Ukraine, and for that, he is being impeached. So impeachment is a very serious thing. Ukraine depends on it. That was our conclusion Wednesday.

But minds change. We saw an exchange between the president's lawyer, eminent Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, and a pair of little known but clearly accomplished Democratic lawmakers, Sen. Goldberg of New Jersey and Sen. Bejar of New York.

Now, we don't want to belittle the process here, but honestly, what you're about to see does seem a shade theatrical for something as serious as an impeachment trial. But judge for yourself.


Joy Behar, co-host of "The View": According to what I'm reading, you're the only constitutional scholar who goes with that line, there is not one other who agrees with you, not one.

Alan Dershowitz, member of Trump's impeachment legal team: Now, let me be very clear about that. In 1867, the Dean of the Columbia Law School --

Whoopi Goldberg, co-host of "The View": Okay, wait, wait. Alan, you know in 1492, Columbus sailed the seas --

Dershowitz: Let me explain.

Goldberg: Listen, I need us to move on, so you're saying now that you need a crime?

Dershowitz: No, no. You're not going to get me to move on until I make this point.

Goldberg: Okay, well, here is the thing, Alan. You're not going to get any time because you've got four people trying to ask you questions, and so I am asking you to move faster.

Wait, how did Sen. Goldberg wind up on Christopher Columbus sailing the ocean blue? Columbus never even went to Ukraine so far as we know, and for that, she attacked Abraham Lincoln, who also never went to Ukraine.

Like so many of the people who are running and commenting on this impeachment trial, they seem to have no idea what it's actually about. They don't understand the charges. They know nothing about the historical precedent.

Suddenly, we seem to have lost the thread here. The reasoning was getting hard to follow, and then into this roiling bouillabaisse of confusion jumped Sen. Hostin of the Upper West Side -- a lawmaker justly famous for the windowpane clarity of her legal analysis. Watch her reframe the debate.

Sunny Hostin, co-host of "The View": Well, let me ask you this very quickly just --

Dershowitz: Sure.

Hostin: Just for giggles. What if the president spent the year vacationing in Moscow, changed the language of this country, perhaps to Russian, or decided to stop doing his job entirely and perhaps golf all day?

Bejar: He does that now.

Hostin: Are you saying we have no ground to impeach him? Because none of that is a crime, either.

And so the list of charges against the president grew longer. Not only did Donald Trump ask unauthorized questions about how Hunter Biden makes a living -- and that's not allowed -- he is also apparently living in Putin's Russia and planning on switching our nation's alphabet to Cyrillic. Some of those letters don't even look real -- they're like astrological signs.

This is a major development, but are those impeachable offenses? Oh, you bet they are. And speaking of betting, here's how the hearing ended -- with a high stakes wager.

Hostin: The GAO, an independent watchdog, said last week that withholding the aid to Ukraine was illegal ...

Dershowitz: No, they didn't say that.

Hostin: A crime.

Dershowitz: They said -- no, no, no, no.

Hostin: Yes, they did.

Dershowitz: Sunny, Sunny, Sunny --

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Hostin: Yes, they did.

Dershowitz: Sunny, I'll tell you what ...

Hostin: Let's assume --

Dershowitz: Let's bet $1,000.00 --

Hostin: Would that be enough for you?

Dershowitz: Yes, let's bet $1,000.00 to be contributed to the Peace of Israel and Palestine that they didn't --

Hostin: Let's just say that I am right. Let's just hypothetically say I am right.

Dershowitz: Please, let me finish. Please --

We've got to pause here for a quick correction. Apparently, there is some sort of unfortunate mix-up in our tape library before the show and some of the video you just saw -- yes, all the video -- our producers are saying was not, in fact, from Thursday's Senate impeachment trial.

Those were not actual U.S. senators, though, of course, they easily could be They are, instead, hosts on a daytime chat show over on ABC called "The View." So they despise the president; they seem entirely sincere about that.

But like so many of the people who are running and commenting on this impeachment trial, they seem to have no idea what it's actually about. They don't understand the charges. They know nothing about the historical precedent.

Facts and details are irrelevant to them; they didn't even bother to read the GAO report that they introduced as evidence. They got it backward. Not that it slowed them down or it ever does.

They are lazy and silly and wrong, but at the same time, they are utterly certain they are on the morally correct side of history. They know they're good people -- excellent people actually -- unlike that horrible old orange man who speaks Russian and the rubes who voted for him.


They know all of that for certain. So in their view, they've got the big things totally right, and that's all that matters.

And so in that way, despite the tape mix-up, it really could have been the impeachment trial. It's essentially the same thing.

Adapted from Tucker Carlson's monologue from "Tucker Carlson Tonight" on Jan. 30, 2020.