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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on Monday released a resolution laying out the ground rules for President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial.
Trump’s team and the House of Representatives have until 9 a.m. on Wednesday to file any motions. The exception being motions to subpoena witnesses or documents. All responses filed to any motions have to be in by 11 a.m. on Wednesday.
The trial will begin at 1 p.m. on Wednesday. The House will have two days to make their case for impeachment but their time allotment cannot exceed 24 hours. After that, Trump’s legal team will be given two days to make their case and again, that cannot exceed a 24 hour time period.
Once the president’s team finishes their presentation, senators can ask questions but they are limited to a 16-hour time frame. There will then be a 4-hour argument split between the House and Trump’s team. Deliberation will follow. At that time the Senate will decide whether or not to subpoena witnesses or documents.
If the Senate decides to allow either side to subpoena witnesses, the witnesses will undergo a deposition and then the Senate will decide if those witnesses will testify.
Once the deliberations are concluded the Senate will vote on each individual article of impeachment.
Below is the full resolution:
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) slammed McConnell’s resolution proposal in a statement:
Senator McConnell repeatedly promised Senators, the public and the press that his rules for the trial would be same as the rules for President Clinton’s trial. After reading his resolution, it’s clear Senator McConnell is hell-bent on making it much more difficult to get witnesses and documents and intent on rushing the trial through. On something as important as impeachment, Senator McConnell’s resolution is nothing short of a national disgrace.
Senator McConnell’s proposed rules depart dramatically from the Clinton precedent – in ways that are designed to prevent the Senate and the American people from learning the full truth about President Trump’s actions that warranted his impeachment. The McConnell rules don’t even allow the simple basic step of admitting the House record into advice at the trial.
Under this resolution, Senator McConnell is saying he doesn’t want to hear any existing evidence, and he doesn’t want to hear any new evidence. A trial with no evidence – no existing record, no witnesses, no documents – isn’t a trial at all. It’s a cover up, and the American people will see it for exactly what it is.
Furthermore, Senator McConnell’s resolution stipulates that key facts be delivered in the wee hours of the night simply because he doesn’t want the American people to hear them. Any senator that votes for the McConnell resolution will be voting to hide information and evidence from the American people.
As soon as Senator McConnell offers this resolution, I will be offering the amendments to address the many flaws in this deeply unfair proposal and to subpoena the witnesses and documents we have requested.