Schumer, McConnell Finalize Framework for Impeachment Trial

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Zachary Evans
·2 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) announced on Monday that he and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) had reached an agreement on the schedule for former President Trump’s impeachment trial.

The House voted in January to impeach Trump for “incitement of insurrection,” accusing the president of inciting a mob of his supporters to amass at the Capitol on January 6. The mob subsequently breached the building, forcing lawmakers to evacuate and leaving five people dead in the riot and its aftermath.

According to the trial framework, the Senate will debate and vote on Tuesday on whether the trial is constitutional. Trump’s defenders and many GOP senators have argued that convicting a president while out of office is unconstitutional, although a small number of Republicans have backed having a trial.

Opening arguments will begin on Wednesday, with House impeachment managers and Trump’s legal team given 16 hours each over a period of four days to present their cases. Next week, each side will take senators’ questions for four hours, and debate will be opened on whether to call witnesses to the trial.

“All parties have agreed to a structure that will ensure a fair and honest Senate impeachment trial of the former president,” Schumer said on the Senate floor on Monday. “The structure we have agreed to is eminently fair.”

McConnell approved of the trial framework, saying it “preserves due process and the rights of both sides. It will give Senators, as jurors, ample time to review the case and the arguments that each side will present.”

The former president’s legal team issued a statement thanking “Senate Republican leadership” for standing “strong for due process.”

“This process will provide us with an opportunity to explain to Senators why it is absurd and unconstitutional to hold an impeachment trial against a private citizen,” the team said.

An impeachment conviction requires the backing of two-thirds of the Senate, meaning 17 Republicans would have to join Democrats to convict Trump. Many Republicans have come out against impeachment in recent days, making it highly unlikely that the former president will be convicted.

More from National Review