Impeachment trial of President Trump

By Meg Wagner, Mike Hayes, Veronica Rocha and Fernando Alfonso III, CNN

Updated 10:56 p.m. ET, January 22, 2020
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10:47 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

George Conway: This is a "day of reckoning" for Republican senators

Conservative attorney George Conway said he's "deeply saddened" by the way GOP senators have handled the impeachment trial so far.

CNN's Jake Tapper just asked him: "How do you feel when you see the Republican party going against these basic rules that you consider to be important?"

"I'm deeply saddened," he said. "It's very upsetting. And this is a moment, I think, of reckoning — not just for the country and for the rule of law and for the Constitution."

Conway continued: 

"It's a very specific day of reckoning for the Republican senators who took this oath and the Republican party generally. Are they going to stand for lies instead of truth? Are they going to stand for gaslighting instead of reality? Are they going to just do the bidding of this one man and put his interests over those of the country? That's what this is about."

Watch here:

10:10 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

George Conway says there should be witnesses at impeachment trial

Conservative attorney George Conway told CNN's Jake Tapper moments ago that he's in favor of hearing from witnesses.

"This is a trial where they should want to hear the evidence," said Conway, who is married to Trump adviser, Kellyanne Conway. 

He continued:

"If they're so sure that the evidence will exonerate President Trump, then, yeah, let's hear from John Bolton. We should hear from Pompeo, we should hear from Mulvaney."
10:42 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

George Conway: Republicans "don't want to hear the evidence because they know the truth"

Conservative lawyer George Conway said Republicans "must be afraid of something" since some have said they do not want new evidence at trial.

"What are they afraid of? What are they afraid of?" Conway asked. "They're going to hear evidence they don't like? They must be afraid of something. And that's the thing that I find most disturbing about it — is they don't want to hear the evidence because they know the truth. They know he's guilty. And they don't want to hear the evidence because they don't want the American people to see it, too."

Watch here:

10:40 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

George Conway: Democrats "out-classed" Trump's legal team

Conservative lawyer George Conway said the Democratic House manager "out-classed" President Trump's legal team at the impeachment trial yesterday.

"Well, I think the managers simply out-classed Trump's lawyers," he told CNN.

He continued:

"The managers were prepared. They were thoughtful. They were factual. They were logical. They were dignified. Trump's lawyers, on the other hand, were dissembling, and distorting and even lying."
10:03 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

George Conway is on CNN now

Attorney George Conway is speaking to CNN following a contentious day in the impeachment trial of President Trump.

You can watch the interview in the video player at the top of this page.

9:57 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

How one 2020 Democrat is balancing his campaign with the Senate impeachment trial

Mark Wilson/Getty Images
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate and Sen. Michael Bennet issued a statement this morning laying out his plans for balancing being a juror in President Trump’s impeachment trial with his campaign itinerary.

“Michael will be present for the duration of the trial and believes it would be a dereliction of duty for Senators to do otherwise,” Bennet campaign spokesperson Shannon Beckham said in a statement. “Given his focus on New Hampshire, he can take advantage of more frequent flights to maximize his time there when the trial is not in session.”

Bennet also reiterated his stance that he would not conduct any campaign fundraising while the impeachment trial is in session, according to the campaign statement.

Bennett is one of four sitting US senators running for President. The others are Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

9:35 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

Trump's legal team isn't expected to make a motion to dismiss case

From CNN's Manu Raju

Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images
Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

Trump's defense team is not expected to make a motion to seek dismissal of the case today, according to sources familiar with the defense team's plans.

Democrats at the moment are also not expected to make any motions today, according to sources familiar with the House managers' plans. 

What this is about: Both sides had until 9:00 a.m. ET to file any potential motions they wanted considered ahead of opening arguments today.

This means that when the Senate trial reconvenes at 1:00 p.m. ET they are expected to go straight into arguments, beginning with the House managers. 

9:07 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

What to watch before the trial kicks off today

From CNN's Phil Mattingly

The Senate impeachment trial gavels into session today at 1 p.m. ET. But there's plenty happening on Capitol Hill this morning.

Moments ago, at 9 a.m. ET, there was a deadline for both House Managers and the White House defense team to file any motions they want considered at the start of the day’s proceedings.

We don’t know what the content of these motions will be nor how many have been offered — but they should be released by the two sides at some point this morning.

Here's what else we're keeping an eye on this morning:

  • 11 a.m. ET: Any responses to those filed motions must be filed
  • 11:30 a.m. ET: Senators will meet for lunch behind close doors with their respective parties.
  • 12:30 p.m. ET: Senate leaders may give opening remarks on the Senate floor — but this is not set and may not happen.
8:47 a.m. ET, January 22, 2020

Catch up: Here's what happened while you were sleeping

From CNN's Phil Mattingly

Alex Edelman/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Alex Edelman/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Debate on the Senate trial rules stretched late into the night: About 12 hours after the trial's 1 p.m. ET start time yesterday, the rules for the opening stage were set.

If you went to bed as the debate dragged on, here's what you missed:

  • Every Democratic amendment was killed: The US Senate voted to table 11 Democratic amendments to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's organizing resolution. Each amendment — save for one — was tabled (in other words, killed) 53-47 along party lines. One was tabled 52-48: Sen. Susan Collins was the only Republican to break ranks at any point during the amendment votes, joining with all Democrats to vote against tabling an amendment that would’ve provided more response time to Wednesday’s trial motions. 
  • Chief Justice John Roberts admonished both sides: About 20 minutes before 1 a.m. ET, the back and forth between House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler and White House lawyers Pat Cipollone and Jay Sekulow got so sharp and personal that both sides were admonished by Roberts. It was gentle, but firm. 
  • Republicans say it was a "good day": McConnell summarized the day as he trolled the Senate halls at 2 a.m. ET, saying, “It was a good day.”