Pelosi names 7 House Democrats who will present case against Trump at Senate trial
Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday announced the seven House Democrats who will act as the "managers" in the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
The managers are: Reps. Adam Schiff of California, who will be the lead manager; Jerry Nadler of New York' Hakeem Jeffries of New York; Jason Crow of Colorado; Zoe Lofgren of California; Val Demings of Florida; and Sylvia Garcia of Texas.
The managers have varied biographies: Schiff was a federal prosecutor; Demings was a police chief; several are attorneys, and Lofgren was a staffer on the House Judiciary Committee during the Nixon impeachment and a House member during the Clinton impeachment.
Pelosi said the House would vote Wednesday afternoon to approve the managers and transmit the two articles of impeachment to the Senate. The trial is set to begin on Tuesday; it's not yet clear if witnesses will be called.
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Giuliani sought private meeting with Ukrainian president, documents show
Rudy Giuliani wrote a letter requesting a private meeting with Volodymyr Zelenskiy, then the president-elect of Ukraine, with President Donald Trump's "knowledge and consent," according to records released by House Democrats Tuesday.
The letter was part of the evidence turned over to the House impeachment investigators by lawyers for Lev Parnas, the Giuliani associate who is awaiting trial on campaign finances charges. It bolsters Democrats' argument that Giuliani was doing Trump's bidding by trying to dig up dirt on political rival Joe Biden and the Democratic National Committee.
Trump has previously tried to distance himself from his attorney's effort, saying in November that "I didn't direct him."
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Schumer says some Republicans could support call for witnesses, documents
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Tuesday on ABC's "The View" that some Republican senators are considering supporting his call for witnesses and documents in the Senate impeachment trial.
"You know, what Joe Friday used to say, "Just the facts, ma'am," on the old 'Dragnet' show. That's what we want, 'just the facts, ma'am,' and we're making progress," Schumer said. "Some of the Republicans are now beginning to say, 'Maybe we need witnesses and documents.' Had Nancy [Pelosi] sent the stuff right over and [Mitch] McConnell moved to dismiss, who knows what would have happened."
Schumer added that if witnesses are called during the Senate trial, their testimony "could be exculpatory, it could be further incriminating, but we'll let the chips fall where they may. But we will not rest until we get the truth."
Speaking on the Senate floor on Tuesday, Schumer said "a trial without witnesses and documents is not a real trial, it's a sham trial, and the American people will be able to tell the difference between a fair hearing of the facts and the coverup."
He added: "Do senate Republicans want to break that lengthy historical precedent by conducting the first impeachment trial of a president in history with no witnesses? Let me ask that question again. This is weighty. This is vital. This is about the republic."
Pelosi says she's not working with McConnell on timing of sending impeachment articles
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Tuesday that she's not coordinating with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on when to send the articles of impeachment to the Senate.
When asked if she was working with McConnell, Pelosi told reporter at the Capitol, "No, he's not working with us. He's keeping it all in the dark. But we will be ready."
Pelosi also said she is looking for "integrity" and "commitment to our Constitution" in selecting House managers for the Senate trial, "which I think describes every member of the House Democratic Caucus."
Rep. Kildee: House managers 'will use every tool' available to call witnesses
Michigan Rep. Dan Kildee, the chief deputy whip of the House Democratic Caucus, said Tuesday on MSNBC that House managers in President Donald Trump's Senate impeachment trial "will use every tool that they have available to them in order to get witnesses called.”
"One, the witnesses that we would like to have had in the House inquiry were blocked by the president and would have been blocked for months and months had we just allowed that time to pass," Kildee said. "I think with the chief justice sitting in the chair, we ought to have a much better chance of getting an order to testify or a subpoena executed upon."
Kildee also said he thinks it's "very possible" that new evidence could be introduced during the trial.
"I mean, obviously, part of the concern is the ability to produce evidence means we're going to have to get our hands on that evidence to get some of the documents that are necessary," Kildee said. "But I'll obviously leave that to the managers."
"We'll make the decision tactically, how to best go at this," he continued. "We what feel very strongly about is that the facts support our contention, the facts support our case that the president abused his authority and attempted to undermine our elections. And when the American public hears that, whether the Senate votes to remove the president or not, the public will be able to draw their conclusions based upon the facts."
McConnell says he expects Trump impeachment trial to start Tuesday
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Tuesday that the Senate's trial of President Donald Trump will likely begin Tuesday.
McConnell said the start date is contingent on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi sending the two articles of impeachment to the Senate on Wednesday, as she said she would if the House approves, and that the Senate would begin preparations for the trial this week.
"The House is likely to finally send the articles over to us tomorrow and we’ll be able to — we believe if that happens — in all likelihood, go through some preliminary steps here this week which could well include the chief justice coming over and swearing in members of the Senate and some other kind of housekeeping measures," McConnell said after a closed-door luncheon with members of the Senate Republican Conference, referring to Chief Justice John Roberts, who will have the job of presiding over the trial.
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McConnell unlikely to pursue dismissal vote on impeachment articles
While President Donald Trump has tweeted that he would like to see the Senate dismiss the impeachment articles against him ahead of a trial, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is unlikely to hold such a vote.
That’s because there is little appetite from Republican members facing difficult re-election races in 2020 to cast a vote that could be seen as overly protective of the president, GOP aides and senators say.
Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., would like to see “2020 Republican incumbents in tough voting situations. So I think recognizing that that's his goal, I think it won't surprise you that we're thinking about that too, and how to avoid that as much as possible."
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