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Politics No tweeting: Senators have to keep quiet, stay off iPhones, and remain seated during Trump's impeachment trial

22:20  15 january  2020
22:20  15 january  2020 Source:   businessinsider.com

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The rules for senators during President Donald Trump's impeachment trial effectively turn them into high school students.

Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell are posing for a picture© Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

They are not allowed to use their iPhones, they have to keep quiet, and they must remain seated during the process.

"During the impeachment proceedings, standing will not be permitted on the floor and this requirement will be strictly enforced. Accordingly, all senators are requested to remain in their seats at all times they are on the Senate floor during the impeachment proceedings," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a letter on Wednesday.

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  McConnell tells Republicans he expects impeachment trial next week He said he expects impeachment articles delivered as early as Friday.While senators and aides cautioned that McConnell does not have inside intelligence, the remarks serve as key scheduling advice for senators. Most Republicans are now gearing up for the relentless pace of the impeachment trial to start on Monday or Tuesday.

Senators cannot take electronic devices into the chamber during the trial, which means they will not be live-tweeting the proceedings.

"We will not have our electronic devices. I just saw a piece of cabinetry in the cloakroom where we will be required to turn over our iPads and our iPhones," GOP Sen. John Cornyn of Texas said earlier this week, per The Hill.

In addition to the letter from McConnell and Schumer, senators were sent a "decorum guidelines" document that outlined some of the rules for the trial, including:

Senators are politicians, not jurors — they should act like it

  Senators are politicians, not jurors — they should act like it All senators should be ready to combat the partisan impeachment articles and fight to find out the real truth — not just the story presented by the left’s impeachment managers.As the Senate prepares to begin its impeachment trial, Democratic politicians and their allies in the press have pushed a narrative that the Senate must act as an "impartial jury." They have blasted Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) for saying he's "not impartial" and continue to use the language of a jury to browbeat Republicans into passivity. But that narrative is flat-out false - impeachment was created by the Founders as a political exercise, and that's never changed.

  • "Senators should plan to be in attendance at all times during the proceedings."
  • "Senators will only have the opportunity for limited speech at the trial. Members should refrain from speaking to neighboring Senators while the case is being presented."
  • "Reading materials should be confined to only those readings which pertain to the matter before the Senate."
  • "No use of phones or electronic devices will be allowed in the Chamber. All electronics should be left in the Cloakroom in the storage provided."
  • "Should votes be required during the proceedings, Senators will stand and vote from their seats."
  • "Pages will continue to be available to relay messages outside the Chamber, and the pages also will be responsible for relaying Senators' written questions to the Chief Justice through the staff of the Parliamentarian."
  • "During the course of the proceedings the Chief Justice should be referred to as 'Mr. Chief Justice.'"
  • "The well of the Senate will not be accessible to senators during the impeachment trial. Please refrain from coming between the chief justice and the managers and counsel. Members should also refrain from using the doors to the lobby when the Senate is sitting in trial."
  • "Access to the Senate floor for senators will be through the Ohio Clock door and cloakrooms until the trial begins. Following the chief justice's arrival in the chamber, all entries and exits will be through the cloakrooms. Members that choose to use the Ohio Clock door should immediately proceed to the cloakroom to store all electronic devices prior to taking their seat in the chamber."

There will also be restrictions on reporters, which was revealed on Tuesday and has raised criticism - including from Republicans.

Ex-White House Ethics Chief Calls McConnell A 'Perjurer' After Senator Takes Impeachment Oath: He Said 'The Exact Opposite'

  Ex-White House Ethics Chief Calls McConnell A 'Perjurer' After Senator Takes Impeachment Oath: He Said 'The Exact Opposite' Richard Painter, who served as former President George W. Bush's top ethics lawyer, called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell a "perjurer" after the senator took an oath swearing impartiality in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. © Mark Wilson/Getty Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell speaking to the press on January 7, 2020 in Washington D.C. McConnell has explicitly indicated he has no intention of being impartial, vowing to work closely with White House counsel and Trump as the trial approached.

"There's an effort to limit the press. I'm going to vote against that if I'm allowed to vote. I think it's a huge mistake. US senators are grown women and grown men," GOP Rep. John Kennedy of Louisiana told Politico reporter Burgess Everett on Wednesday. Kennedy added: "If they don't want to make a comment, they know how to say no comment."

As Insider's Eliza Relman reported on Tuesday: Citing security concerns, the Senate will force credentialed reporters to remain inside a single press pen and won't allow them to walk up to and interview senators in the hallways, as is custom.

The House on Wednesday announced impeachment managers designated to act as prosecutors during the trial and voted to transmit the articles of impeachment against Trump to the Senate.

The Senate is still finalizing all of the rules for the trial, which includes deliberations over witnesses.

McConnell told reporters on Tuesday he expects opening arguments in the impeachment trial to begin on Tuesday, January 21.

Protester interrupts Senate impeachment trial, yelling 'Schumer is the devil' .
The man was arrested and charged with unlawful conduct.The protester was tackled and escorted out of the gallery within seconds. Jeffries, one of the seven House impeachment managers tasked with presenting the case against Trump, resumed his remarks, but the protester continued to scream loudly just outside the chamber, on the third floor near the press gallery.

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