EVENT ENDED

Trump impeachment trial live coverage: Democrats make case for obstruction

In their final day of arguments, House Democrats presented their case alleging Trump obstructed Congress.
Image: Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the House voted to send impeachment articles against President Donald Trump to the Senate, where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell officially received the House managers on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the House voted to send impeachment articles against President Donald Trump to the Senate, where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell officially received the House managers on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020.Chelsea Stahl / NBC News

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
SUBSCRIBE

The Democratic House managers used their final day of arguments on Friday — the fourth full day of President Donald Trump's impeachment trial — to make their case that President Donald Trump obstructed Congress in denying them witness testimony and documents.

Follow us here for all of the latest breaking news and analysis on impeachment from NBC News' political reporters, as well as our teams on Capitol Hill and at the White House.

Highlights from the Senate trial

  • Democrats finished hours of arguments in which managers called Trump a "dictator" and a danger to the nation with a plea to the Senate: "Give America a fair trial, she's worth it," lead House manager Rep. Adam Schiff said.
  • The White House is set to begin laying out Trump's defense Saturday morning.
  • "Get rid of her": A voice appearing to be Trump's is heard on tape demanding Ukraine ambassador Marie Yovanovitch's ouster.
  • Schiff warned his fellow lawmakers that "the next time, it just may be you" who Trump targets.
  • Democratic House manager Rep. Val Demings says the evidence is "pretty painful" for senators.

Download the NBC News mobile app for the latest news on the impeachment inquiry.

Live Blog

Schiff rips McConnell's impeachment rules proposal as “process for a rigged trial"

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., the lead House impeachment manager, on Tuesday blasted Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s impeachment trial rules proposal as "a process for a rigged trial.”

"This is not a process for a fair trial. This is the process for a rigged trial,” Schiff said at a brief press conference alongside the six other House managers for the trial.

“This is the process if you do not want the American people to see the evidence. This is a process you use if you want to, hand in hand, working in concert with the president, allow the president to continue to obstruct the Congress and deny the truth to the American people.”

The proposal by McConnell, R-Ky., allots each side a total of 24 hours to present arguments, although that time is confined to two working days. Additionally, it suggests that none of the House evidence will be automatically admitted into the trial. Instead, the Senate will vote later on whether to admit the documents.

Arguments will begin Wednesday afternoon, according to those rules, which are expected to be adopted Tuesday. The proposed 12-hour sessions to present each side's case could lead arguments to extend well into the night and possibly the early morning hours.

Schiff took particular aim at that aspect of the rules, accusing McConnell and the Republicans of “compressing the time of the trial” so that “the proceedings could conceivably go well into the night when apparently Sen. McConnell hopes the American people will not be watching.”

House managers call White House counsel a fact witness, warn of 'disqualification' from defense team

The House managers in the impeachment trial have told President Donald Trump's lead lawyer, White House counsel Pat Cipollone, that they believe he is a fact witness to the charges and are demanding he disclose all related information so that the Senate and Chief Justice John Roberts "can be apprised of any potential ethical issues, conflicts, or biases.”

The managers sent a letter to Cipollone on Tuesday saying that the risks associated with his being an advocate for Trump and an alleged witness "are so serious that they can require a lawyer's disqualification."

Read the letter.

The White House responded in a statement later Tuesday, calling the Democrats "an utter joke."

"The idea that the Counsel to the President has to turn over protected documents and confidential information is ludicrous, and to imply he can’t represent the President of the United States in an impeachment proceeding is completely absurd," the statement said.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff walks to a press conference with other impeachment managers at the Capitol on Jan. 21, 2020.J. Scott Applewhite / AP

'Appalling,' a 'national disgrace,' 'designed to hide the truth': Democrats blast McConnell's impeachment proposal

Democrats on Tuesday called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's proposal for President Donald Trump's impeachment trial "appalling," a "national disgrace," and "deliberately designed to hide the truth."

"This is just appalling," Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., told MSNBC's "Morning Joe," adding that McConnell, R-Ky., was seeking to turn the trial into "a farce" and that under this proposal it would be a "national disgrace."

Schumer pledged to offer amendments to change the "most egregious things" McConnell proposed, pleading for four Republicans — the total needed to form a majority — to vote with the Democrats.

Read more about the Democrats' response.

Trump calls impeachment trial a long-running 'hoax' at Davos summit

President Donald Trump called the impeachment trial set to start in Washington later Tuesday a long-running "hoax" after landing in Davos.

"It's been going on for years," the president said at the Swiss mountain summit of the world's elite hours before senators in Washington kick off the proceedings.

"Look forward to being here, meeting with biggest companies in the world, for the benefit of the United States," he added in a speech to some of the world's richest and most influential people.

Trump is using the moment on the world stage to divert attention from the drama playing out back home and give the appearance of a president hard at work. It’s a strategy used by former President Bill Clinton, who scheduled events across the country during his impeachment, though he didn’t travel abroad.

Read the full story.

Trump impeachment trial: The rules and everything else you need to know

The Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump — only the third in U.S. history — is scheduled to get fully underway Tuesday, with Democrats and Republicans potentially clashing over whether to call witnesses.

The proposed rules for the trial, which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., released Monday evening, are similar but not identical to the format of President Bill Clinton's impeachment trial in 1999. McConnell's rules would set aside up to four hours of debate, equally divided between both sides, on whether there should be subpoenas for witnesses or documents, and then the full Senate would vote on the issue.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., could seek to amend the rules Tuesday to ensure that his side can call witnesses, a process that could take several hours and could even include closed-door debates. 

Read about the rules and everything else you need to know.