Senate Republicans give Donald Trump the rigged show trial that he wanted

In a huge break with precedent, the Republican led Senate today voted down 11 attempts on the part of Senate Democrats to ensure that pertinent documents and witnesses would be introduced during the trial of Donald J. Trump.

In the history of the United States of America, there have been 15 impeachment trials in the U.S. Senate, and every single one of them had witnesses provide testimony. Senators historically, it would seem, felt as though, in order to honor their sworn oath to provide “impartial justice,” they had to actually hear from witnesses, as well as examine all of the relevant evidence. That, however, isn’t going to happen here. [McConnell says that they may decided to hear from witnesses and examine evidence after the both sides make their cases, but I think we all know that’s bullshit.]

Here, for those of you who might have missed it, is Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, one of the House Impeachment Managers, laying it all out in front of the Senate earlier today, showing how many witnesses had been heard from in each of these 15 impeachment trials that have been held in the history of the U.S. Senate.

And it’s not just the case that members of the Senate considered evidence and heard from witnesses in the past. Here’s a breakdown showing how the Senate trial of Donald J. Trump, under the rules passed in a 53-47 vote along strict party lines tonight, will be considerably different than that of William Jefferson Clinton, our last U.S. president to be impeached.

Adam Schiff had the following to say on this subject earlier today. “All of documents in the Clinton trial were turned over prior to the trial,” he said. “All 90,00 pages of them so that they could be used in the House’s case. None of the documents have been turned over by the president in this case.”

So why is it that the rules, as passed by the Republican controlled Senate tonight, are so drastically different this time? Why is it that this trial is going to look so different than every other impeachment trial in the history of the Senate. Here, again, is Congressman Adam Schiff, addressing the full Senate earlier today as one of the appointed House Impeachment Managers.

You would think that an administration with nothing to hide would welcome an opportunity to present evidence. It seems, however, that’s not the case. And, for what it’s worth, they aren’t just blocking evidence and witnesses from seeing the light of day. The Republicans making the President’s case in front of the Senate today, also lied repeatedly about the House impeachment investigation. Here, for example, is Trump attorney Pat Cipollone saying that House Republicans had been kept from participating in House depositions. This, of course, is a baldfaced lie.

It’s a small ray of sunshine in on an otherwise shitty day for American democracy, but it’s worth pointing out, when talking about these repeated lies and pattern of obstruction, that Senator Elizabeth “A trial without all of the evidence isn’t a trial – it’s a cover-up” Warren just said that, when she’s elected to replace Donald Trump in the White House, one of her first official acts will be to “investigate the corruption during the Trump administration and hold officials accountable for illegal activity.” And one would hope that perhaps individuals like Cipollone, who continue to lie for Donald Trump, in spite of the overwhelming that he withheld vital military aid from an ally at war in hopes for forcing said ally to announce a sham investigation into his primary domestic rival, might actually be held to account.

One more quote before I call it quits for the night. Here’s House Impeachment Manager Val Demings on this coordinated attempt by Mitch McConnell and the Republicans to keep these witnesses and evidence from the American people.

Now do me a favor and call your Senators, OK?

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  1. iRobert
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    Trump will be fine.

    GOP Senators not so much.

  2. Posted January 22, 2020 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Watch the Democratic Party’s press conference live now:

  3. Anonymous
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    Trump said at Davos today that he was comfortable with the status of the impeachment trial because he’s been successful in withholding the evidence. “Honestly, we have all the material,” he said. “They don’t have the material.” He’s admitting it.

  4. Senator Chuck Schumer
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    “The White House defense were unprepared, confused and totally unconvincing. White House counsel resorted to the kind of histrionics you see on Fox News evening broadcasts.”

  5. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    The House disallowed Republicans the ability to call witnesses. I thought the Senate is supposed to try the case presented by the House. Now after sitting on the “urgent” impeachment for weeks they turn it over but want to add to it!

  6. Posted January 22, 2020 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    Watch the Impeachment trial here live now:

  7. Frosted Flakes
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    Schiff is a liar.

  8. Frosted Flakes
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    Why though? There is no way that people would lie like this just because they hate Trump or want power back. No. People lie like this when they are afraid of losing their individual rights because they are guilty of doing something illegal. I just can’t believe someone would lie like this just because they hate Trump.

  9. Anonymous
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    Conservative lawyer George Conway on GOP treatment of the impeachment trial: “What are they afraid of? …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.”

  10. Lynne
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    Interesting that you don’t see that it is Trump who is doing the lying, FF As usual, you dismiss anyone who disagrees with you as a liar. It is tired and boring.

  11. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    “FF As usual, you dismiss anyone who disagrees with you as a liar.”

    Frosted Flakes employs reason to back up his statements unlike you so it is understandable you would characterize him in a way that makes sense to you.

  12. Kit
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    SCHIFF: “If POTUS was fighting corruption, why would he hide it from us? … why wouldn’t he be proud to tell Congress, ‘I’m holding up aid & I’m holding it up because I’m fighting corruption.’ Why wouldn’t he? Because of course it wasn’t true. There’s no evidence of that.”

  13. Frosted Flakes
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    It is not that hard of a question to answer is it? I wonder if Schiff took a poll to find out what percentage of American’s would be unable to easily answer that question?

  14. Lynne
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    HW, I consider it a compliment that someone as unfamiliar with actual reason as you display here thinks I am bad at such things.

  15. Wobblie
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

    Aloha they have an iron clad obstruction case. Graham knows it. He blew a nut during their last break. They are scared of the political consequences of their cravenness.

  16. iRobert
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    The GOP Senators will protect Trump regardless of what he has done. They are being extorted by the same interests that installed and protect Trump. The GOP Senators are being set up. They’re re-election bids are being destroyed. Trump will be re-installed and Democrats will be handed control of the senate.

  17. iRobert
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

    Their re-election bids are being destroyed. It’s part of the plan.

    The “white hats,” as HW refers to them, or shadow government, as I refer to them, are forcing the GOP to self-destruct while at the same time protecting Trump for purposes of running a continued distraction.

  18. iRobert
    Posted January 22, 2020 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    Lindsey Graham is obviously going through some things.

  19. Heidi Przybyla by proxy
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    Wondering why the Senate may, for the first time in history, not hear from witnesses in an impeachment trial?

    *Kindly* pound this into your head:
    A majority of the Senate represents 18% of the population.

    (h/t @Redistrict)

  20. Hyborian Warlord
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    “HW, I consider it a compliment that someone as unfamiliar with actual reason as you display here thinks I am bad at such things.”

    Good one

  21. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    I really don’t have a good grasp of the motives which are driving the shadow government (or “white hats” as HW refers to them). But it does appear that they will protect Trump from being removed from office, and will ensure his reelection. They seem also to be fine with, or even intent on, sacrificing GOP reputations and careers. They’ve already marginalized many previously very influential GOP leaders.

  22. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    No offense, Lynne, but since I found out you’re not black, I’ve lost interest in anything you’ve had to say. This blog doesn’t need any more pasty white voices.

  23. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    I’m sorry, I mean “pastey white voices.” We really need some people of color here…or even just one would help. Jean can’t speak for everybody. Though I know she tries.

    It doesn’t seem like a lot to ask. It’s not Mark’s fault as far as I know. He just somehow repels black people.

  24. Jean Henry
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Gosh– I wonder why more people of color don’t comment here when there are so many fine commentators like yourself with whom they can engage, iRobert?

    Maybe they just need to listen to more of your version of MLK Jr

  25. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    What’s my version of MLK, Jr.?

    I have never stated any “version” of MLK, Jr.

    I believe he was a brilliant strategist, and I have never objected to anything he ever did, said or wrote.

    You are insane, Jean. You think you can read other people’s minds. You can’t even read your own.

  26. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    You may recall (or maybe you won’t, considering your deteriorating mental state) that you suggested your comprehension and strategies regarding racism were superior to those of Dr. MLK, Jr., due to all the knowledge made available after his assassination 52 years ago. I would say that is evidence that you have a “version” of MLK that is not accurate.

    I would be ecstatic to have an actual black person commenting here, rather than having to stomach your insane attempts to speak for them. Anything would be better than having to continue reading your bullshit. I guess it’s probably wishful thinking though, to expect that you would defer to them. It’s more likely, I suppose, that you would dismiss them somehow and reclaim your imagined position as the authority here.

  27. Lynne
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

    iRobert. OK. That is your prerogative but also an interesting statement by one of the very overrepresented group of white men here. FWIW, I once tried to get a friend who is black to come here and she laughed at me and after she read the comments decided that she has enough sexism and racism in her life already. I understand that and haven’t tried recruiting anyone since. It would be nice to have more diverse commenters but I am not sure it is going to happen.

    We had a nice discussion about how it isn’t the responsibility of marginalized people to educate white men about sexism and racism though. Or white women about racism.

  28. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    It was nice that you tried, Lynne. Maybe ask a black man next time. We need to hear from an actual black person. You and Jean just don’t cut it.

    Was I the last person here to find out you weren’t black?

    I gave your opinions a lot more consideration when I thought you were. Now you’re just another privileged white voice this blog doesn’t need.

    Jean is going to continue pretending to speak for everybody. Even though nobody would choose Jean to speak for them. Jean is the last person any group, movement or individual would want speaking for them. But that’s all we’re going to get here until actual spokespeople come here to comment regularly.

  29. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

    Black people also avoided Mark’s shadow art fail like the plague. You and Jean can’t blame that on me. I avoided it too…and probably for the same reasons.

  30. Lynne
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

    My new boyfriend is a black man. I suppose I could go Lysistrata on him and make him come here but I actually like him so I probably won’t LOL

  31. Lynne
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

    I had no idea anyone here thought I was a black woman. I would have corrected them if I had. I am no Rachel Dolezal!

  32. iRobert
    Posted January 23, 2020 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    I definitely understand, Lynne. I certainly wouldn’t recommend anyone I like come here to read or comment.

    Maybe if one of his friends is around too much, you can tell him to represent here. We’re desperate. Tell him about Jean. Maybe he’ll have compassion for us.

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