Senate leaders anticipate articles of impeachment will be “heading the Senates way soon,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said on Friday.
McConnell criticized House Democrats for their treatment of the impeachment inquiry, claiming they developed “cold feet” after the partisan vote to impeach President Donald Trump.
“By spring, Speaker Pelosi told the country Impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless theres something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I dont think we should go down that path, because it divides the country,” he said, speaking on the Senate floor in Washington. “That was the speaker less than a year ago.”
He also referenced comments House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) made during President Bill Clintons impeachment in 1999, when Nadler said an impeachment push shouldnt be favored by only one party.
“Democrats have let Trump Derangement Syndrome develop into a kind of dangerous partisan fever that our founding fathers were afraid of,” he added.
“And then, just before the holidays, this sad spectacle took another turn. As soon as the partisan impeachment votes had finished, the prosecutors began to develop cold feet. Instead of sending articles to the Senate, they flinched. They flinched. Thats right. The same people who spent weeks screaming that impeachment was so serious and so urgent that it couldnt wait for due process now decided it could wait indefinitely while they check the political winds and look for new talking points.”
McConnell dismissed the idea that Pelosi could pressure Senate leaders into holding the kind of trial she wants, reiterating he wants to follow the precedent set during the Clinton trial. The two-phase process allows the prosecutors and defense, or House lawyers and Trumps representatives, to present their cases to the Senate before senators then vote on whether to allow witnesses.
Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) have called for witnesses to be subpoenaed for the Senate trial, including acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney.
Schumer said on the Senate floor that the “issue holding up the Senate trial” is “whether there will be witnesses or documents.”
“The Republican leader hasnt given one good reason why there shouldnt be relevant witnesses or relevant documents,” he added.
Trump was impeached on Dec. 18, 2019, for abuse of office and obstruction of Congress.
Pelosi later Friday responded to McConnell, writing: “For several months, the House has subpoenaed documents and witnesses which the President stonewalled. These cases are now in the courts. While the House nevertheless was able to obtain compelling evidence of impeachable conduct, Leader McConnell knows full well that the Presidents obstructionRead More – Source