South Carolina-based attorney Butch Bowers will represent Trump at his 2nd impeachment trial, Sen. Lindsey Graham says

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Grace Panetta
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Trump Melania leaving
Outgoing US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump speak to the media depart the White House in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2021. - President Trump travels his Mar-a-Lago golf club residence in Palm Beach, Florida, and will not attend the inauguration for President-elect Joe Biden. Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images
  • South Carolina attorney Butch Bowers will represent Trump in his second impeachment.

  • Sen. Graham made this announcement on a Thursday call with GOP senators, per Punchbowl News.

  • Trump's former allies are distancing themselves from him, initially casting doubt on who would defend the ex-president.

  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

South Carolina-based attorney Butch Bowers will represent former President Donald Trump during his second impeachment trial in the US Senate.

Sen. Lindsey Graham made this announcement on a call with GOP senators on Thursday, Punchbowl News reported, and former Trump campaign senior adviser confirmed the news on Twitter later that afternoon.

Bowers, who runs his law practice out of an office across the street from the South Carolina statehouse in the capital city of Columbia, has a long history of representing elected officials and political candidates on governmental and election law matters, according to the Bowers Law Office's website.

He's previously served as counsel to former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford when he was threatened with impeachment in 2009 for concealing his extramarital affair with an Argentinian journalist.

Bowers has also represented former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and former Lt. Gov and current governor Henry McMaster on ethics matters, in addition to holding significant experience in election law.

He represented former North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory and the South Carolina State Election Commission in litigation over voter ID laws, and served as special counsel for voting matters at the Department of Justice under the Bush administration in addition to previously chairing the State Election Commission.

Bowser did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

CNN reported earlier on Thursday that Trump's impeachment trial could have been held up due to the ex-president not having any legal representation to defend him.

On January 13, the House voted 232-197 to impeach Trump on a charge of inciting the January 6 pro-Trump violent insurrection on the US Capitol. The network said that the House could send over the articles as soon as Friday.

The Senate, divided between 50 Republicans and 50 Democrats, now has to manage a delicate balancing act of holding hearings and confirmation votes for President Joe Biden's Cabinet nominees while also conducting an impeachment trial.

Read more: Joe Biden's Cabinet-in-waiting: Tracking nominees for key roles like Secretary of State, Secretary of the Treasury and more

A number of prominent conservative attorneys who previously worked for Trump and big law firms are now distancing themselves from the ex-president over his role in spreading false conspiracy theories about the election and then inciting the riot on the Capitol, Bloomberg News reported on January 14.

Bloomberg said that many of the attorneys who represented Trump or assisted in his defense for his first trial, including former White House counsel Pat Cipollone, Trump's former personal attorney Jay Sekulow, former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, and former senior advisor Eric Herschmann, either declined to represent Trump this time around or expressed no interest in doing so.

Law firms such as Porter Wright and Snell & Wilmer also dropped their representation of Trump's campaign in various post-election lawsuits after public backlash. Even the big-name law firm Jones Day publicly distanced itself from Trump.

Another prominent conservative attorney, Cleta Mitchell, resigned from the firm Foley & Lardner after she participated in a phone call where Trump pressured Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to overturn the results of the state's presidential election results.

Read more: Trump didn't pardon himself. Here's the massive tsunami of legal peril that now awaits him.

Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal attorney who represented the president in some of his lawsuits challenging election results in the wake of the November 3 election, said that he can't represent the president at his trial because he qualifies as a witness to the events. Giuliani spoke at the pre-insurrection rally in Washington, DC, and urged "trial by combat," which he later said was a reference to "Game of Thrones" and not a suggestion to commit violence, as occurred in the riot that immediately followed the rally.

Bloomberg said that some of the people who could defend Trump include GOP Reps. Jim Jordan and Elise Stefanik as well as controversial conservative attorney and law professor John Eastman, who represented Trump in an amicus brief to a lawsuit in the Supreme Court from the state of Texas that sought to invalidate and overturn election results in several battleground states. The court declined to hear the case.

"I think it's reflective of where Trump's own status is these days in which he has relatively little to offer and people don't want to be associated with him generally," Keith Whittington, a professor of political science at Princeton University told Bloomberg. "The fact is he's not going to get the A team."

It is unclear whether Trump, who left for his home in Florida on Wednesday, would return to Washington, DC, for the trial. Trump himself did not testify at his first impeachment trial, when the Senate acquitted him on two charges of abusing his office and obstructing Congress.

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