Democrats will walk article of impeachment against Trump to Senate today despite growing number of Republican senators saying trial should NOT go ahead
- House managers will walk an impeachment article to the Senate Monday night
- Donald Trump is the first president to be impeached twice
- Senators will be sworn in as the court of impeachment Tuesday
- The main trial will begin Feb. 9
- Senators including Marco Rubio have come out against the trial
- Trump has toyed with starting ‘Patriot Party’ in move that pressures senators
House impeachment managers will carry out the symbolic act of formally walking an impeachment article of Donald Trump to the Senate on Monday – officially beginning the first impeachment of a U.S. president who is out of office.
The act – undertaken by managers selected by Speaker Nancy Pelosi at a time she revealed to Senate on Friday – sets in motion procedures under the rules of the Senate for Trump’s trial.
Only broad outlines of the time-frame are known, but it is now a certainty that the trial will go forward, with the trial itself set to begin in about two weeks.
TAKE 1: House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving and Clerk of the House Cheryl Johnson deliver the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to Secretary of the Senate Julie Adams on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020. A new group of managers will transmit a different article on January 26
The Senate is expected to receive the article around 7 pm tonight, after the managers physically bring a document charging Donald Trump with ‘incitement of insurrection.’
On Tuesday, senators will be sworn in to hear the trial. The trial itself will begin on Feb. 9, under an agreement reached Friday between Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, although many details of how it will go have yet to be worked out.
It was still not clear who would preside over the trial and whether it will be Chief Justice John Roberts.
The Senate trial itself is set to begin January 9, under an agreement reached between Majority Leader Charles Schumer and Sen. Mitch McConnell
The trial will advance even as Senate Republicans have been expressing opposition to the impeachment – even after some of them denounced Trump in the immediate hours after a MAGA mob trashed the Capitol after attending a ‘Stop the Steal’ rally where Trump urged them to ‘fight.’
Among the most emphatic is Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who is up for reelection in Trump’s new home state. ‘I think the trial is stupid, I think it’s counterproductive. The first chance I get to vote to end this trial, I’ll do it.’
He also said it was ‘arrogant’ for the Senate to vote to bar Trump from holding future office – in a procedure laid out in the Constitution.
‘I think that’s an arrogant statement for anyone to make. Voters get to decide that. Who are we to tell voters who they can vote for in the future,’ Rubio told ‘Fox News Sunday.’
But Rubio also said Trump ‘bears responsibility for some of what happened’ when a mob of MAGA supporters ransacked the Capitol during the counting of the electoral votes of Joe Biden’s election victory.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), who opposed an effort to overturn the election during the Electoral Vote count January 6, says he doesn’t think the Senate has the authority under the Constitution to convict an ex-president.
‘The more I talk to other Republican senators, the more they’re beginning to line up’ in agreement, he said, of a conference that stood by Trump throughout his presidency.
‘I think a lot of Americans are going to think it’s strange that the Senate is spending its time trying to convict and remove from office a man who left office a week ago,’ he said.
The GOP senators move toward Trump comes even amid a bombshell New York Times report that a top Justice Department official met with the president in his final weeks in office about an effort to announce a federal investigation into the Georgia election results – and a plan for Trump to fire the acting attorney general after he wouldn’t go along with a probe into baseless allegations of election fraud. Trump reportedly backed down only after a team of top DOJ officials threatened to quit if he went ahead with the plan.
A group of legal scholars have pointed to past impeachments for lower offices even after the occupants had resigned or left office.
Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, who voted for an impeachment article against Trump in January, is among a handle of Republican senators most likely to vote to convict.
‘I believe that what is being alleged and what we saw, which is incitement to insurrection, is an impeachable offense. If not, what is?’ he said.
The two-week pause negotiated by leaders allows for both sides to draft legal briefs.