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Politics McConnell, Schumer issue ground rules for impeachment trial

19:40  15 january  2020
19:40  15 january  2020 Source:   rollcall.com

McConnell says he has enough Republican votes to begin Trump's trial without witnesses

  McConnell says he has enough Republican votes to begin Trump's trial without witnesses The process cannot get started until Nancy Pelosi sends the House-passed articles to the Senate."We have the votes once the impeachment trial has begun to pass a resolution — essentially the same as, very similar to, the 100-to-nothing vote in the Clinton trial," McConnell told reporters.

Senators and their staffs officially learned Wednesday of access restrictions and decorum practices in and around the Senate chamber during the upcoming impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., left, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., in Louisville, Ky., in 2018.© Timothy D. Easley Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., left, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., in Louisville, Ky., in 2018.

In a Dear Colleague letter signed by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Charles E. Schumer of New York, senators were advised of limits on guest and staff access to the Capitol building’s Senate wing.

Senators and House members will be allowed access, as will staffers with special impeachment trial credentials (the normal hard passes will not be sufficient). In addition, visitors to the Capitol for official business will need to be escorted through the tunnels from the Senate office buildings by staffers with the proper special credential.

Schumer indicates Pelosi may soon send impeachment articles to Senate

  Schumer indicates Pelosi may soon send impeachment articles to Senate Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi may finally be ready to send the Senate the articles of impeachment for President Trump that the House passed last month, now that it is clear Democrats will not win a pretrial agreement for witness testimony. © Provided by Washington ExaminerSchumer, a New York Democrat who is working very closely with Pelosi on the timing for delivering the two impeachment articles, said the new information would allow Pelosi to decide which Democratic lawmakers should serve as impeachment managers who would deliver the articles to the Senate and present the case to lawmakers there.

“Access to any floor of the Senate Wing of the Capitol is restricted daily, beginning 30 minutes prior to all proceedings involving the exhibition or consideration of the Articles of Impeachment against the President of the United States and daily, beginning 30 minutes prior to all times that the United States Senate is sitting for trial with the Chief Justice of the United States presiding,” McConnell and Schumer wrote Wednesday.

Also eligible for Senate-side access are people who hold gallery tickets to view the proceedings, as well as aides with floor privileges under the normal Senate rules (provided they have the impeachment trial overlay) and members of the press (who also have been advised they need the special credentials).

Trump re-ups calls for Biden, Schiff testimony at impeachment trial

  Trump re-ups calls for Biden, Schiff testimony at impeachment trial The president’s remarks come after Trump huddled privately Wednesday with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell at the White House.“I’m going to leave it to the Senate, but I’d like to hear the whistleblower, I’d like to hear ‘shifty’ Schiff, I’d like to hear Hunter Biden and Joe Biden,” Trump told reporters at a White House event.

Visitor gallery tickets are being allocated to individual Senate offices, and the daily passes may be used more than once on the day in which they are valid, which could make Senate offices a hot spot for handing off the passes to view the proceedings.

Committees will each get two of the special credentials, and personal offices will each get one, according to the leaders.

As for the behavior of the senators themselves, a separate bulletin released on Wednesday affirms that there will be no electronic devices in the chamber for use by the senators during the trial. The notice also reminds senators that they need to keep quiet during the proceedings in the chamber.

Slideshow by photo services

McConnell defends his impeachment trial rules as even-handed and fair

  McConnell defends his impeachment trial rules as even-handed and fair U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell called his proposed rules for President Trump's impeachment trial a "fair road map.""Today, we will consider and pass an organizing resolution that will structure the first phase of the trial," McConnell said Tuesday, shortly before the trial got rolling.

“Upon the announcement of the arrival of the Chief Justice, Senators should all silently rise at their desks and remain standing until the Chief Justice takes his seat,” the notice says. “Similarly, when the Chief Justice departs, Senators should rise and remain standing until he has exited the chamber.”

In accordance with impeachment trial rules, requests of the chief justice such as motions and questions for impeachment managers are supposed to be made in writing by senators.

The letter from Schumer and McConnell also effectively includes confirmation of media access restrictions which CQ Roll Call reported Tuesday. Senators are being told to refer questions about media access to the Senate wing of the Capitol to the Senate media gallery staff.

Tuesday night, Rules and Administration ranking Democrat Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., expressed opposition to the press restrictions, which include an additional layer of screening to enter the Senate chamber and a “pen” on the second floor of the Capitol restricting the ability of members of the media to question senators.

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Schumer unveils amendment listing documents he wants for Senate impeachment trial .
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., released the text of his amendment to the Senate's impeachment rules that would subpoena a wide variety of documents from the White House before House impeachment managers begin their opening statement. The amendment asks for records of documents, communications, notes, phone conversations and meetings from the White House, the National Security Council and a number of individuals who played small or large roles in the Ukraine scandal that led to President Trump's impeachment proceedings in the House.

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