Impeachment Trial Begins in Senate as President Trump Embarks for Davos
A new CNN poll showed 51 percent of Americans support removing Trump from office. The poll shows an increase over the same poll one month ago.
DESPARDES — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has proposed a condensed, two-day calendar for each side to give opening statements, which if approved, could see the Senate facing 12-hour sessions for the rare impeachment trial, with some of the very senators running to replace Trump as president sitting as jurors.
After the four days of opening arguments — two days per side — senators will be allowed up to 16 hours for questions to the prosecution and defense, followed by four hours of debate. Only then will there be votes on calling other witnesses.
At the end of deliberations, the Senate would then vote on each impeachment article.
The ground rules being pushed by the Republicans has been however rejected by the Democrats — the Senate Democratic leader, Chuck Schumer, called the GOP leader’s proposed rules package a “national disgrace.”
As the Senators convene on Tuesday, voting on the Republican leader’s resolution will be one of the first orders of business. The rules also pushes off any votes on witnesses until later in the process, rather than up front, as Democrats had demanded.
House Democrats impeached the president last month on two charges: abuse of power by withholding U.S. military aid to Ukraine as he pressed the country to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden, and obstruction of Congress by by refusing to comply with their investigation.
The Senate — where Republicans hold majority in numbers — will see only the third presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history, coming just weeks before the first primaries of the 2020 election season and as voters are assessing Trump’s first term and weighing the candidates who want to challenge him in the fall.
A new CNN poll showed 51 percent of Americans support removing Trump from office — the president is embarking for an overseas trip to the global leaders conference in Davos, Switzerland, according to AP.
The poll shows an increase over the same poll one month ago. “Net support for removing Trump from office is up 8 points since mid-December,” pointed out Virginia state senate chief of staff Matt Rogers in a tweet.
“It’s a shocking number that even President Bill Clinton didn’t have to contend with when he was impeached,” commented Raw Story.
The Constitution gives the House the sole power to impeach a president and the Senate the final verdict by convening as the impeachment court for a trial.