Impeachment trial of President Trump
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."
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.
"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."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.”
Two sources in communication with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell say he wants this trial done in about 10 days.
It's possible the trial could warp up that quickly — but there's a big caveat here: Both sides can yield time back, so that could change the time frame. And if there's a majority vote to subpoena witnesses or documents, that could change things as well.
But if all 24 hours allotted to each side for opening arguments are used, here's how the schedule could play out:
- Today: Democratic arguments
- Tomorrow: Democratic arguments
- Friday: Democratic arguments
- Saturday: Trump team arguments
- Monday: Trump team arguments
- Jan. 28: Trump team arguments
- Jan. 29: Senator questions
- Jan 30: Senator questions
- Jan 31: Four hours of debate on whether to subpoena witnesses and subpoenas, a vote on witnesses and documents and a vote on other motions; If all votes fail, the Senate could move to the acquittal vote
President Trump is on Twitter quote-tweeting videos of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and going after Democrats for requesting witnesses in the Senate trial.
"Their case was so 'overwhelming' in the House that they need & demand Witnesses in the Senate!" Trump wrote.
Trump is on his way back to the US from Davos, Switzerland.
Here are his tweets: