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With rules settled, Senate moves on to arguments

by Harvest Prude
Posted 1/22/20, 12:41 pm

WASHINGTON—The first day of the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump lasted until the wee hours of Wednesday morning as Democrats and Republicans clashed over the rules that will govern the proceedings.

What did they settle on? Democrats wanted to add new witnesses at the beginning of the trial. After 12 hours of deliberation, the Republican majority overruled them with a party-line vote of 53-47. Senators will hear opening arguments first and then have an opportunity to submit written questions. They can return to the topic of additional witnesses later. Chief Justice John Roberts rebuked both House impeachment manager Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., and White House counsel Pat Cipollone for one tense exchange, reminding them that “they are addressing the world’s greatest deliberative body.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., allowed some changes to the rules, including automatically submitting the House’s impeachment inquiry evidence to the Senate trial record. House managers and defense lawyers will also stretch their 24 hours of arguments over three days instead of two. Arguments get underway Wednesday afternoon.

Dig deeper: Read my report on the four themes of this impeachment process.

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Harvest Prude

Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.

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