MSNBC political analyst Michael Steele predicted Tuesday that there would be massive public interest in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial, referring to it as the O.J. Simpson murder case "on steroids."
The former Republican National Committee chairman said the attention to Trump's case in the U.S. Senate would be even greater than that paid to the former football star charged with killing his ex-wife and her friend.
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"Whether or not they've spent the last eight months paying attention to this, they will once this goes to the Senate," Steele said. "Everyone loves a good trial. This is O.J. on steroids, because it involves the president of the United States, and it involves something that is massively big, and it has all kinds of narratives related to what the president did or didn't do, and history and all of that. So people will tune in."
While Simpson and Trump are both undoubtedly world-famous figures, their cases are quite different, and the coverage surrounding Trump's impeachment is unlikely to have the same drama as the Simpson trial.
The Simpson case involved a suspected double murder by one of the most famous athletes in the world, creating a media sensation. Accusations of racism against the police permeated the trial. It spawned books, documentaries, and an Emmy-winning TV series.
House Democrats, meanwhile, are seeking to impeach Trump for abusing his power and obstructing Congress through what they call his corrupt solicitation of election assistance from Ukraine.
While Simpson's acquittal in 1995 was a stunning conclusion to the case, Trump's acquittal in the Republican-controlled Senate appears to be a foregone conclusion if he does get impeached.
Despite the barrage of impeachment stories and hearings since September surrounding Trump's Ukraine phone call, the coverage has done little to alter the White House's political fortunes. Democratic presidential candidates have continued to campaign as though Trump will be their opponent come November, indicating that they also view Trump's removal from office as unlikely.