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Pelosi weighs timing of Trump impeachment trial

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PELOSI: "I'm not going to be telling you when it is going... but we are... we are ready."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi kept the plans to begin the Senate impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump close to the vest on Thursday, saying she'd consult with her fellow Democrats in the two chambers of Congress, both of which they now control.

PELOSI: "We will be in a number, a few days when I'll be talking with the managers as to when the Senate will be ready for the trial of the then-president of the United States for his role in instigating an insurrection."

A source familiar with the planning said Pelosi could send the article of impeachment to the Senate as early as Friday. The single article charges Trump with inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol in a failed attempt to prevent Congress from formally certifying President Joe Biden's victory, a case Pelosi said was cut and dried.

PELOSI: "He showed a path to the Capitol and the lawlessness took place, a direct connection in one day over and above all of the other statements he had made before."

The House voted last week to make Trump the first president in U.S. history to be impeached two times. Now it is up to the Senate to decide whether Trump is guilty of the impeachment charge and whether to block him from seeking office ever again.

While the Democrats narrowly took control of the Senate on Wednesday, at least two-thirds of the 100 senators are required to convict Trump.

MARCO RUBIO: "That is nothing but the politics of resentment and retribution."

Some Senate Republicans have argued that Congress should not put a former president on trial and that doing so will further divide the country.

PELOSI: "No."

Pelosi disagreed.

PELOSI: "Just because he's now gone - thank God - you don't say to a president, 'Do whatever you want in the last months of your administration, you're going to get a get-out-of-jail card free,' because people think we should make nice nice and forget that people died here on Jan. 6... I think that would be harmful to unity."

Under Senate rules, the trial would start a day after the House delivered the article of impeachment. But some Democrats have hinted that a delay might be engineered in order to keep Biden's legislative agenda and Senate confirmations for his appointments on track.

Video Transcript

NANCY PELOSI: I'm not going to be telling you when it is going. But we are-- we are ready.

- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi kept the plans to begin the Senate impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump close to the vest on Thursday, saying she'd consult with her fellow Democrats in the two chambers of Congress, both of which they now control.

NANCY PELOSI: We will be, in another few days, when I'll be talking with the managers as to when the Senate will be ready for the trial of the then-president of the United States for his role in instigating an insurrection.

- A source familiar with the planning said Pelosi could send the article of impeachment to the Senate as early as Friday. The single article charges Trump with inciting the January 6 attack on the US Capitol in a failed attempt to prevent Congress from formally certifying President Joe Biden's victory-- a case Pelosi said was cut and dried.

NANCY PELOSI: He showed a path to the Capitol, and the lawlessness took place-- a direct connection in one day over and above all of the other statesments-- statements he had made before.

- The House voted last week to make Trump the first president in US history to be impeached two times. Now it's up to the Senate to decide whether Trump is guilty of the impeachment charge and whether to block him from seeking office ever again. While the Democrats narrowly took control of the Senate on Wednesday, at least 2/3 of the 100 senators are required to convict Trump.

MARCO RUBIO: That is nothing but the politics of resentment and retribution.

- Some Senate Republicans have argued that Congress should not put a former president on trial, and that doing so will further divide the country.

NANCY PELOSI: No.

- Pelosi disagreed.

NANCY PELOSI: Just because he's now gone-- thank god-- you don't say to a president, do whatever you want in the last months of your administration, you're going to get a get-out-of-jail card free-- because people think we should make nice-nice and forget that people died here on January 6. I think that would be harmful to unity.

- Under Senate rules, the trial would start a day after the House delivered the article of impeachment. But some Democrats have hinted that a delay might be engineered in order to keep Biden's legislative agenda and Senate confirmations for his appointments on track.