McConnell Itching To Push Senate Impeachment Trial Sans Articles

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Master politician House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) does not play checkers. Instead, she plays political chess, always looking ahead as she implements her political strategies. After the House charged Donald Trump with two articles of impeachment, it appeared she was wielding the upper hand. Then, something happened.

Delaying her move, Pelosi gave Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) some breathing room in his negotiations. The longer she held back on sending the impeachment articles of to the Senate, the more time that allowed other information/facts to surface. Plus it has been driving  the president crazy.

POLITICO offered “a little bit of food for thought:”

‘What if it doesn’t matter if Speaker NANCY PELOSI sends over the impeachment articles?’

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It appeared that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) could:

‘[Actually] conduct an impeachment trial even if Pelosi never sends the articles, should he choose, many people in the Capitol and legal community believe. Congress returns next week.’

According to POLITICO, former federal prosecutor and CNN analyst Eli Honig described how the impeachment process worked:

‘The Constitution stipulates other instances when things must be “transmitted” to the Senate — such as the ratified results of the electoral college vote. It never says anything like that when it comes to impeachment. So, McConnell can hold a trial without the articles. The majority leader has been mum about his intentions thus far, but has said that impeachment will lead to acquittal — something nearly all Capitol watchers believe’.

At this point, Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) said she wanted to see witnesses. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) also indicated she would be interested in them. Still, she has frequently gone right up to the line of voting with the Democrats then backed off. She might actually break with Republicans, since she has been facing a difficult 2020 race. Maine has been turning bluer and bluer.

Thus far, the two women senators and Majority Leader McConnell have been somewhat squishy in their demands. POLITICO indicated one possible response, one of actions:

‘”We will oppose the rules for any impeachment trial that doesn’t include X,” that will be something you should pay attention to. Discomfort is a feeling, not a strategy or demand.’

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Instead, Collins’ said:

“Each of us has to take an oath in which we swear to render impartial justice. As far as what the journey to justice would look like, Collins told NEWS CENTER Maine that she’s open to more evidence and witnesses being presented but only if most senators want that. ‘

The senior Maine senator continued:

“I think we need to hear the opening arguments from the house managers from the President’s attorneys, ask questions ourselves as we did in the Clinton trial and vote on whether we need more witnesses and more documents.’

Collins worried that the two parties’ differences might interfere with one of the legislature’s most serious responsibilities:”

‘The fact is the Clinton trial was less partisan. For example, the two leaders presented to the Senate an approach to begin the trial that was adopted unanimously. It’s hard to envision that happening with the trial of President Trump.”’

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