Trump impeachment: Analysis and news on the House charges and Senate acquittal of the president

The Senate trial on the two articles of impeachment against Trump, abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, ended with acquittal on both charges.
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Chelsea Stahl / NBC News

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The fast-moving impeachment of President Donald Trump, stemming from his dealings with Ukraine, moved to the Senate for trial in January after the House voted a month earlier to adopt two articles of impeachment: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

The Senate voted in early February to acquit the president on both charges.

Trump's impeachment followed weeks of testimony related to his efforts to press Ukraine for investigations into Democratic rivals and hours of fiery debate over the process.

Trump is only the third president in U.S. history to be impeached. Read all of the breaking news and analysis on impeachment from NBC News' political reporters, as well as our teams on Capitol Hill and at the White House.

Trump impeachment highlights

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Live Blog

When will Trump's Senate trial start and how long will it last? The picture begins to take shape.

The developments on Friday could put the start date of arguments in the Senate trial of President Donald Trump around Tuesday Jan. 21, after the Martin Luther King holiday the day before.

And that raises the possibility that the trial may not be over before the real kickoff of the 2020 presidential primary on Monday Feb. 3 at the Iowa caucuses.

So what does that mean for the Senate and for Trump?

Read more about what the Senate timeline could look like.

Trump says 'you have to' block Bolton from testifying 'for the sake of the office'

President Donald Trump told Fox News that he thinks he would "have to" invoke executive privilege to block former national security adviser John Bolton from testifying in the Senate impeachment trial, saying it would be "for the sake of the office."

In an interview excerpt released Friday, Trump said when asked by the network's Laura Ingraham why he wouldn't allow Bolton to testify, "I have no problem, other than one thing: You can't be in the White House as president — future, I'm talking about future, many future presidents — and have a security adviser, anybody having to do with security, and legal and other things. ..."

"You're going to invoke executive privilege?" Ingraham asked.

"Especially — well, I think you have to. For the sake of the office," Trump said.

The administration has tried to prevent several top officials from testifying in the House and Senate proceedings, frustrating Democrats who have called for their testimony. Bolton, a key figure in the impeachment saga who did not testify during the House inquiry, said earlier this week he would be willing to testify if subpoenaed by the Senate.

Trump said Thursday that he wouldn't mind a deal in the Senate for witnesses to be called if it meant that his defense could also call people to testify, including Joe Biden and his son Hunter. When asked whether he’d object to his former national security adviser testifying, Trump told reporters at the White House that it would be up to the Senate, but protecting executive privilege was critical.

Sen. Susan Collins working with 'fairly small group' of Republicans to ensure witnesses at Trump's trial

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said Friday that she's been working with "a fairly small group" of Republican senators to make sure witnesses can be called in President Donald Trump's impending Senate impeachment trial.

"We should be completely open to calling witnesses," Collins told reporters in Bangor, Maine, the Bangor Daily News reported. She declined to say who or how many GOP lawmakers she's been working with, but said “I am hopeful that we can reach an agreement on how to proceed with the trial that will allow the opportunity for both the House and the president's counsel if they choose to do so."

Read the full story.

Pelosi prepares to send articles of impeachment to Senate, will consult with Democrats on Tuesday

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a letter to Democratic lawmakers on Friday that she will consult with her members on Tuesday as she announced steps to send the articles of impeachment to the Senate.

The letter also suggested that the House could name its managers, who will act as the prosecutors of President Donald Trump for the Senate trial, and transmit the two articles of impeachment against the president as soon as next week. But Pelosi gave no specific indication of exactly when she intends to send the articles to the Senate, a step that is necessary for the trial to begin.

"I have asked Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler to be prepared to bring to the floor next week a resolution to appoint managers and transmit articles of impeachment to the Senate," she wrote. "I will be consulting with you at our Tuesday House Democratic Caucus meeting on how we proceed further," she said.

Read the full story.

McConnell backs resolution allowing dismissal if impeachment articles are delayed

McConnell said Thursday that he is signing on to resolution from Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., that would allow for the dismissal of the articles of impeachment if Pelosi fails to transmit them to the Senate.

It is highly unlikely the resolution will pass, as it needs 67 votes— unless McConnell were to go nuclear— and neither option seems viable.

Trump would support witnesses testifying in Senate trial if Bidens were called

President Donald Trump said Thursday that he wouldn’t mind a deal in the Senate for witnesses to be called during his impeachment trial if it meant that his defense could also call people to testify, including Joe and Hunter Biden.

"I’m going to leave it to the Senate, but I’d like to hear from the whistleblower, I’d like to hear from shifty Schiff, I’d like to hear from Hunter Biden and Joe Biden," Trump told reporters in response to a question about whether there were circumstances under which he’d support the calling of witnesses in his impeachment trial.

When asked whether he’d object to his former national security adviser John Bolton testifying in a Senate trial, Trump said that it would be up to the Senate, but that it would be critical to protect executive privilege. 

"That’s really going to be up to the Senate," he said. "I'd have to ask the lawyers because we do have to, to me, for the future, we have to protect presidential privilege. When we start allowing national security advisers to just go up and say whatever they want to say, we can't do that."

Read more here.

Pelosi won't budge on sending impeachment articles to Senate, despite calls from Democrats

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Thursday that she will send the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate "when I'm ready," rebuffing calls from top Democrats to submit them.

“No, I’m not holding them indefinitely," Pelosi told reporters during a press conference at the Capitol. "I will turn them over when I’m ready, and that will probably be soon.”

Some Democrats in the House and Senate have joined Republicans in recent days in saying it's time for Pelosi to send the articles to the Senate.