The impeachment trial of President Donald Trump will start Friday, with Trumps lawyers and House impeachment managers led by Reps. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) and Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) making concluding arguments. Votes for or against calling impeachment witnesses are expected today.
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Nadler Not on Floor
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), an impeachment manager, said he wont be on the House floor to deal with his ailing wife in New York City.
“In December, following the House Judiciary Committee markup of the Articles of Impeachment against President Donald J. Trump, my wife was admitted to the hospital where she was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer. She has undergone surgery and is taking further steps to address the spread of the cancer,” Nadler said.
I am sorry to not be able to stay in Washington for the conclusion of the Senate impeachment trial but I need to be home with my wife at this time. We have many decisions to make as a family. I have every faith in my colleagues and hope the Senate will do what is right.
— (((Rep. Nadler))) (@RepJerryNadler) January 31, 2020
Nadler added: “On Monday, I will be in New York with her to meet with doctors, determine a path forward, and begin her treatment. I am sorry to miss some of the Senate Impeachment Trial, which is of critical importance to our democracy.”.
House Managers Ask Senate for One Week for Witnesses
The House impeachment managers have asked the Senate for one more week so witnesses can testify in the case. However, with Sen. Lisa Murkowskis (R-Alaska) statement that she will vote against witnesses, a Democratic measure to call them up seems likely to fail.
Democrats need four Republicans to vote. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) indicated that he will not vote in favor of witnesses.
On the Senate floor, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), a manager from the House, said they need “one week” to listen to witnesses in the trial.
“I will make an offer to opposing counsel, who says this will stretch on indefinitely if you decide to have a single witness,” Schiff said.
“Lets cabin the depositions to one week. I think we can. I think we should. I think we must,” he continued.
Trump Denies Asking Bolton to Put Zelensky, Giuliani in Contact
President Donald Trump on Friday said he did not tell former national security adviser John Bolton to set up a meeting between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and personal attorney Rudy Giuliani.
“I never instructed John Bolton to set up a meeting for Rudy Giuliani, one of the greatest corruption fighters in America and by far the greatest mayor in the history of N.Y.C., to meet with President Zelensky,” Trump said in a statement. “That meeting never happened.”
The New York Times reported Friday afternoon that Bolton said in a forthcoming book that Trump directed him to place Zelensky in contact with Giuliani.
Murkowski Against Voting for Witnesses
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) revealed Thursday that she will not vote in favor of calling witnesses in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump after a weeks worth of speculation about whether she would be a key swing-vote to help the Democrats, but she admitted that “Congress has failed.”
In a statement, Murkowski explained that House Democrats “chose to send articles of impeachment that are rushed and flawed” before she “carefully considered the need for additional witnesses and documents.”
“Given the partisan nature of this impeachment from the very beginning and throughout, I have come to the conclusion that there will be no fair trial in the Senate,” she wrote. “I dont believe the continuation of the process will change anything.”
Murkowski also said that some of her colleagues in the Senate tried to politicize the trial and attack presiding officer Chief Justice John Roberts.
“We have already degraded this institution for partisan political benefit, and I will not enable those who wish to pull down another,” she added. “We are sadly at a low point of division in this country.”
Murkowski Not Sure
Moderate GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) has not signaled how she will vote for witnesses.
“Im going to go back to my office and put eye drops in so I can keep reading,” Murkowski told reporters Thursday. “Ive been forming a lot of thoughts so thats going to be my job now at almost 11:00.”
There has been speculation that Murkowski could join Democrats in voting to call witnesses, including former national security adviser John Bolton.
GOP Senator: Trial Might Go Until Next Week
Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), a member of the GOP leadership, said that the impeachment trial could slog into next week and interfere with the Iowa caucuses and State of the Union address.
“My guess is it probably is going to carry us over to the first part of next week, but obviously we have the Iowa caucuses on FebRead More – Source