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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "Trump, Donald J" (Page 67)

Impeachment Trial Live: Highlights and Takeaways

Here’s what you need to know:

Video

Westlake Legal Group 21dc-live-mcconnellsub-videoSixteenByNine3000 Impeachment Trial Live: Highlights and Takeaways United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate Schumer, Charles E Schiff, Adam B Republican Party Politics and Government McConnell, Mitch impeachment Democratic Party

A debate is under way in the Senate over the ground rules the majority leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, has proposed for President Trump’s trial.CreditCredit…Erin Schaff/The New York Times

The Senate convened shortly after 1 p.m. on Tuesday to start in earnest the impeachment trial of Mr. Trump, who faces charges that he abused the power of his office and obstructed Congress. Senators were warned that they had to remain quiet, a skill that they rarely exercise in the Senate chamber, or face imprisonment.

The first order of business was a debate over the format of the trial, a draft of which Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, released on Monday. Democrats spent the morning lashing out against Mr. McConnell’s plan, accusing him and other Republicans of trying to cover up Mr. Trump’s actions.

Unlike most other debates in the Senate, the elected senators did not do the actual debating. Instead, the seven House impeachment managers, who are serving as prosecutors in the case, and Mr. Trump’s legal defense team argued over the rules that will govern the proceedings.

The Senate voted 53 to 47 to table the first proposed amendment to Mr. McConnell’s rules proposal. The top Democrat in the chamber, Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, had proposed an amendment to subpoena Mr. Trump’s acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to provide documents and records related to the Trump administration’s pressure campaign on Ukraine.

The administration refused last year to hand over the documents to the Democratic-led House during its impeachment inquiry. Democrats have argued that the documents are critical to the Senate for conducting a fair trial.

After the vote, the impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team began debating Mr. Schumer’s second proposed amendment to the rules, which called for the subpoena of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for State Department documents related to Ukraine, including communications about withholding military aid, a decision at the center of the two impeachment charges against the president.

Less than a day after releasing his rules proposal and drawing outrage from Democrats, Mr. McConnell submitted to the Senate a modified version with two significant changes. The most notable was a provision to automatically enter evidence collected during the House impeachment inquiry into the trial record. The earlier version of Mr. McConnell’s proposal would have put the decision of whether to admit the House evidence to a Senate vot

Mr. McConnell also gave the House impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team an additional day to argue their cases under the proposed rules the Senate began considering Tuesday afternoon. The initial proposal gave each side up to 24 hours over two days — a time frame Democrats criticized because it could push key testimony into early morning hours, when most Americans would be sleeping.

Each side still gets a total of 24 hours to present, but spreading it across three days will give both legal teams more time to lay out their cases and end the days earlier.

Mr. McConnell made the changes after key Republican senators, including Susan Collins of Maine, argued that the rules for Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial should not deviate significantly from the rules used during the only modern precedent, the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton in 1999.

Ms. Collins, a moderate Republican who is likely to face a tough re-election bid later this year, has significant sway with Mr. McConnell, as her votes could change the outcome of the trial.

.

Even as Democrats lodged an unexpected victory Tuesday with the changes Mr. McConnell made to his proposed rules for the trial, they are still hoping to persuade some Republicans to join them in making other changes to the proceedings that Mr. McConnell opposes.

“The real test will be if they pressure Senator McConnell to allow witnesses and documents,” Mr. Schumer said in a statement during a brief break in the trial.

Mr. McConnell’s plan would have the Senate vote first on whether they want to consider new evidence at all, even as more details from key witnesses emerged in recent weeks and John R. Bolton, Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser, said he would testify if subpoenaed. Mr. Bolton, for instance, has firsthand accounts of some of the White House’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to benefit Mr. Trump.

A majority of senators would have to agree to consider new evidence, and then they would vote on admitting specific witnesses or documents individually.

While the Senate trial commenced with hours of debate over the format of Mr. Trump’s trial, the president met with world leaders at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where he trumpeted the strong American economy, heaping praise upon himself.

But when Democrats called for the White House counsel, Pat A. Cipollone, to turn over documents related to the Ukraine matter, the White House hit back with a sharp statement on Mr. Trump’s behalf.

“The Democrats are an utter joke — they have no case, and this latest political stunt proves it,” said Hogan Gidley, a White House spokesman. “The idea that the counsel to the president has to turn over protected documents and confidential information is ludicrous, and to imply he can’t represent the president of the United States in an impeachment proceeding is completely absurd.”

Earlier on Tuesday, when Mr. Trump was asked a question about the impeachment trial, taking place thousands of miles away, he said, “That whole thing is a hoax.”

Mr. Trump is expected to be back in Washington Wednesday evening.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Barr Once Contradicted Trump’s Claim That Abuse of Power Is Not Impeachable

Westlake Legal Group merlin_167087664_56e46adf-c059-4a7a-9bc2-bc7067fec242-facebookJumbo Barr Once Contradicted Trump’s Claim That Abuse of Power Is Not Impeachable United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Russian Interference in 2016 US Elections and Ties to Trump Associates Presidents and Presidency (US) Mueller, Robert S III Law and Legislation Justice Department impeachment Ethics and Official Misconduct Dershowitz, Alan M Constitution (US) Barr, William P

WASHINGTON — Scholars have roundly rejected a central argument of President Trump’s lawyers that abuse of power is not by itself an impeachable offense. But it turns out that another important legal figure has contradicted that idea: Mr. Trump’s attorney general and close ally, William P. Barr.

In summer 2018, when he was still in private practice, Mr. Barr wrote a confidential memo for the Justice Department and Mr. Trump’s legal team to help the president get out of a problem. The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, was pressuring him to answer questions about whether he had illegally impeded the Russia investigation.

Mr. Trump should not talk to investigators about his actions as president, even under a subpoena, Mr. Barr wrote in his 19-page memo, which became public during his confirmation. Mr. Barr based his advice on a sweeping theory of executive power under which obstruction of justice laws do not apply to presidents, even if they misuse their authority over the Justice Department to block investigations into themselves or their associates for corrupt reasons.

But Mr. Barr tempered his theory with a reassurance. Even without the possibility of criminal penalties, he wrote, a check is in place on presidents who abuse their discretionary powers — impeachment.

The fact that the president “is ultimately subject to the judgment of Congress through the impeachment process means that the president is not the judge in his own cause,” he wrote.

He added, “The remedy of impeachment demonstrates that the president remains accountable under law for his misdeeds in office,” quoting from a 1982 Supreme Court case.

Mr. Barr has long embraced a maximalist philosophy of executive power. But in espousing the view that abuse of power can be an impeachable offense, he put himself squarely in the mainstream of legal thinking. Most constitutional scholars broadly agree that the constitutional term “high crimes and misdemeanors” for which an official may be impeached includes abuse of power.

But in a 110-page brief on Monday, Mr. Trump’s impeachment team — led by Pat A. Cipollone, the White House counsel and a former aide to Mr. Barr in the first Bush administration, and Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer Jay Sekulow — portrayed the article of impeachment claiming that Mr. Trump abused his power in the Ukraine affair as unconstitutional because he was not accused of an ordinary crime.

“House Democrats’ novel conception of ‘abuse of power’ as a supposedly impeachable offense is constitutionally defective,” they wrote. “It supplants the framers’ standard of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ with a made-up theory that the president can be impeached and removed from office under an amorphous and undefined standard of ‘abuse of power.’”

Contrary to what Mr. Barr wrote 20 months ago, the Trump defense team also insisted that the framers did not want Congress to judge whether presidents abused their discretion and made decisions based on improper motives.

“House Democrats’ conception of ‘abuse of power’ is especially dangerous because it rests on the even more radical claim that a president can be impeached and removed from office solely for doing something he is allowed to do, if he did it for the ‘wrong’ subjective reasons,” the Trump team wrote.

A spokeswoman for Mr. Barr declined to comment. A spokesman for Mr. Trump’s impeachment defense team did not respond to a request for comment about the tensions.

But Mr. Barr’s view was no passing thought. His 2018 memo emphasized that presidents who misuse their authority by acting with an improper motive are politically accountable, not just in elections but also via impeachment.

Between elections, “the people’s representatives stand watch and have the tools to oversee, discipline, and, if they deem appropriate, remove the president from office,” he wrote. “Under the framers’ plan, the determination whether the president is making decisions based on ‘improper’ motives or whether he is ‘faithfully’ discharging his responsibilities is left to the people, through the election process, and the Congress, through the impeachment process.”

The result of Mr. Barr’s main argument in 2018 and the Trump team’s theory in 2020 is identical: Both posited that facts were immaterial, both in a way that was convenient to counter the threat Mr. Trump faced at that moment.

If Mr. Barr’s obstruction of justice theory is correct — and many legal scholars reject it — then Mr. Mueller had no basis to scrutinize Mr. Trump’s actions that interfered with the Russia investigation.

Similarly, if the Trump impeachment team’s theory is correct, the Senate has no basis to subpoena documents or call witnesses. The lawyers are implying that even if Mr. Trump did abuse his power to conduct foreign policy by trying to coerce Ukraine into announcing investigations that could help him in the 2020 election, the Senate should acquit Mr. Trump anyway.

Another member of Mr. Trump’s legal team, Alan Dershowitz, a professor emeritus at Harvard Law School and criminal defense lawyer, is expected to make a presentation to the Senate trial this week laying out in detail the theory that abuses of power are not impeachable without an ordinary criminal violation.

Critics of Mr. Dershowitz’s arguments have pointed to the seeming tension with comments he made in 1998, when he did not have a client facing impeachment for abuse of power: “If you have somebody who completely corrupts the office of president and who abuses trust and who poses great danger to our liberty, you don’t need a technical crime.”

In an interview this week, Mr. Dershowitz argued that his position now was not inconsistent with what he said in 1998, pointing to his use then of the phrase “technical crime” and saying that he is arguing today that impeachment requires “crimelike” conduct.

Mr. Dershowitz went further on Tuesday, saying on Twitter that he had not thoroughly researched the question in 1998 but recently has done so. “To the extent therefore that my 1998 off-the-cuff interview statement suggested the opposite,” he wrote, “I retract it.”

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Partisan Rules Debate Rages as Senate Opens Trump Impeachment Trial

Westlake Legal Group merlin_167515650_3288b414-7e82-43a4-82e5-792618f110cb-facebookJumbo Partisan Rules Debate Rages as Senate Opens Trump Impeachment Trial United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate Schumer, Charles E Republican Party Presidential Election of 2020 McConnell, Mitch impeachment House of Representatives Democratic Party Collins, Susan M

WASHINGTON — A divided Senate began the impeachment trial of President Trump on Tuesday in utter acrimony, as Republicans refused to commit to hearing from witnesses Democrats demanded and moderate Republicans forced last-minute changes to rules that had been tailored to the president’s wishes.

The debate, convened just after 1 p.m. in a Senate chamber transformed for the occasion, marked the substantive beginning of the third presidential impeachment trial in American history. It was the culmination of weeks of rhetorical sparring between the two parties over whether and when to call witnesses and new evidence that Mr. Trump blocked from House investigators.

Standing in the well of the Senate, the Democratic House impeachment managers pleaded with senators, who were sworn to silence, to reject proposed rules from the majority leader, Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, that would delay a debate over witnesses and documents until the middle of the trial, with no guarantee that they would ever be called.

The question of calling new evidence, said Representative Adam B. Schiff of California, the lead manager, was an “even more important question than how you vote on guilt or innocence.”

“If the Senate votes to deprive itself of witnesses and documents, the opening statements will be the end of the trial,” he said. “To say let’s just have the opening statements and then we’ll see means let’s have the trial, and maybe we can just sweep this all under the rug.”

Senate Democrats planned a series of amendments for later in the day to try to commit the chamber to subpoenaing four specific witnesses and tranches of documents. With Republicans in firm control of their 53-to-47 majority, each was expected to fail. But the issue of witnesses is expected to resurface later in the trial, after opening arguments and a question period, when the rules allow votes on whether and whom to subpoena.

At the heart of the trial are charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress against the president approved last month nearly along party lines by the Democratic-led House. They assert that Mr. Trump used the power of his office to enlist a foreign power for help in the 2020 election by pressuring Ukraine to announce investigations of his political rivals while withholding as leverage nearly $400 million in military aid and a White House meeting for its president, and then stonewalled congressional attempts to investigate.

Mr. Trump’s legal team argues that the charges are baseless and amount to criminalizing a president’s prerogative to make foreign policy decisions as he sees fit and to shield from Congress documents relating to the conduct of his duties. They also claim — in a break with most constitutional scholars — that because the articles of impeachment do not outline a specific violation of a law, Mr. Trump cannot be impeached.

But on Tuesday, the debate focused on whether his trial would be fair or not.

“This initial step will offer an early signal to our country: Can the Senate still serve our founding purpose?” Mr. McConnell said.

But under pressure from Republican moderates, Mr. McConnell made some last-minute changes to the set of rules he unveiled on Monday, which would have squeezed opening arguments by both sides into two 12-hour marathon days and refused to admit the findings of the House impeachment inquiry into evidence without a separate vote later in the trial.

Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Rob Portman of Ohio, among others, objected to those proposals, which were a departure from procedures adopted unanimously by the Senate for the 1999 trial of President Bill Clinton, on which Mr. McConnell had promised to model his rules. At a luncheon with Republican senators in the Capitol just before the trial was to begin, Ms. Collins and Mr. Portman raised their objections privately, according to aides familiar with the conversation, and Mr. McConnell submitted a revised copy of the resolution — with lines crossed out and changes scrawled in the margins — when it was time for the debate.

When his resolution was read aloud on the Senate floor, two days had been extended to three and the House’s records would be automatically admitted into evidence, although Mr. McConnell inserted a provision not included in the 1999 rules that would allow Mr. Trump’s team to move to throw out parts of the House case.

The historically rare debate was rendered even more unusual by Senate rules that prohibit senators from speaking on the chamber floor for the duration of the proceedings and empower the House managers and White House defense lawyers to argue aloud over the proposals instead. The effect was that on the trial’s first day, the Senate chamber split cleanly into partisan factions, with the managers siding with Senate Democrats and Mr. Trump’s lawyers taking the place of the Republicans.

Pat A. Cipollone, the White House counsel, rose first and addressed the senators, urging them to support Mr. McConnell’s proposed rules, which he called “a fair way to proceed” and getting in a jab at House Democrats’ delay in transmitting the articles of impeachment to the Senate.

“We believe that once you hear those initial presentations, the only conclusion will be that the president has done nothing wrong,” Mr. Cipollone said, “and that these articles of impeachment do not begin to approach the standard required by the Constitution.”

Locked in silence, senators were able to speak only before the proceeding began or during brief breaks. Speaking to reporters on Tuesday morning, Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader, pledged to force votes later in the day on about a half-dozen amendments that would, if adopted, direct the Senate to subpoena documents and witnesses that evaded House investigators.

“It is completely partisan. It was kept secret until the eve of the trial,” he said. “The McConnell rules seem to have been designed by President Trump and for President Trump, simply executed by Leader McConnell and Senate Republicans.”

Specifically, he planned to force votes on records housed at the White House, State Department and Defense Department, and to compel testimony from four current and former Trump administration officials who were blocked from speaking with the House: John R. Bolton, the former White House national security adviser; Mick Mulvaney, the acting White House chief of staff; Robert B. Blair, an adviser to Mr. Mulvaney; and Michael Duffey, a White House budget official.

Mr. McConnell promised to move to table each amendment so it could not be adopted, but the debate could take hours.

“This is the fair road map for our trial,” he said in a speech on the Senate floor not long after Mr. Schumer’s remarks. “We need it in place before we can move forward. So the Senate should prepare to remain in session today until we complete this resolution and adopt it.”

Even after Tuesday’s changes, Mr. McConnell’s proposal makes way for potentially the fastest presidential impeachment trial in American history, particularly if the Senate declines to call witnesses.

Only two other American presidents have stood trial in the Senate for high crimes and misdemeanors. Andrew Johnson was impeached in 1868, and his trial took the better part of three months, featuring testimony from dozens of witnesses and extended periods for discovery, before he was ultimately acquitted by just a single vote. Mr. Clinton was tried in 1999 on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice. That proceeding lasted five weeks, included testimony from just three witnesses and resulted in an overwhelming acquittal.

Without witnesses, Mr. Trump’s trial could conclude by the end of January. If senators ultimately do call witnesses, that timeline could stretch weeks longer.

Just an hour or so before the trial began, the seven House managers submitted one final written rebuttal to arguments put forward against their charges by Mr. Trump’s lawyers. In 34 detailed pages, they rejected the lawyers’ assertion that abuse of power was not an impeachable offense and that Mr. Trump had acted legally when he ordered administration officials not to appear for questioning in the House or provide documents for the impeachment inquiry.

Catie Edmondson and Emily Cochrane contributed reporting.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Impeachment Trial Live: Highlights and Takeaways

Here’s what you need to know:

Video

Westlake Legal Group 21dc-live-mcconnellsub-videoSixteenByNine3000 Impeachment Trial Live: Highlights and Takeaways United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate Schumer, Charles E Schiff, Adam B Republican Party Politics and Government McConnell, Mitch impeachment Democratic Party

A debate is under way in the Senate over the ground rules the majority leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, has proposed for President Trump’s trial.CreditCredit…Erin Schaff/The New York Times

The Senate convened shortly after 1 p.m. on Tuesday to start in earnest the impeachment trial of Mr. Trump, who faces charges that he abused the power of his office and obstructed Congress. Senators were warned that they had to remain quiet, a skill that they rarely exercise in the Senate chamber, or face imprisonment.

The first order of business was a debate over the format of the trial, a draft of which Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, released on Monday. Democrats spent the morning lashing out against Mr. McConnell’s plan, accusing him and other Republicans of trying to cover up Mr. Trump’s actions.

Unlike most other debates in the Senate, the elected senators did not do the actual debating. Instead, the seven House impeachment managers, who are serving as prosecutors in the case, and Mr. Trump’s legal defense team argued over the rules that will govern the proceedings.

The Senate voted 53 to 47 to table the first proposed amendment to Mr. McConnell’s rules proposal. The top Democrat in the chamber, Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, had proposed an amendment to subpoena Mr. Trump’s acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to provide documents and records related to the Trump administration’s pressure campaign on Ukraine.

The administration refused last year to hand over the documents to the Democratic-led House during its impeachment inquiry. Democrats have argued that the documents are critical to the Senate for conducting a fair trial.

After the vote, the impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team began debating Mr. Schumer’s second proposed amendment to the rules, which called for the subpoena of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for State Department documents related to Ukraine, including communications about withholding military aid, a decision at the center of the two impeachment charges against the president.

Less than a day after releasing his rules proposal and drawing outrage from Democrats, Mr. McConnell submitted to the Senate a modified version with two significant changes. The most notable was a provision to automatically enter evidence collected during the House impeachment inquiry into the trial record. The earlier version of Mr. McConnell’s proposal would have put the decision of whether to admit the House evidence to a Senate vot

Mr. McConnell also gave the House impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team an additional day to argue their cases under the proposed rules the Senate began considering Tuesday afternoon. The initial proposal gave each side up to 24 hours over two days — a time frame Democrats criticized because it could push key testimony into early morning hours, when most Americans would be sleeping.

Each side still gets a total of 24 hours to present, but spreading it across three days will give both legal teams more time to lay out their cases and end the days earlier.

Mr. McConnell made the changes after key Republican senators, including Susan Collins of Maine, argued that the rules for Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial should not deviate significantly from the rules used during the only modern precedent, the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton in 1999.

Ms. Collins, a moderate Republican who is likely to face a tough re-election bid later this year, has significant sway with Mr. McConnell, as her votes could change the outcome of the trial.

.

Even as Democrats lodged an unexpected victory Tuesday with the changes Mr. McConnell made to his proposed rules for the trial, they are still hoping to persuade some Republicans to join them in making other changes to the proceedings that Mr. McConnell opposes.

“The real test will be if they pressure Senator McConnell to allow witnesses and documents,” Mr. Schumer said in a statement during a brief break in the trial.

Mr. McConnell’s plan would have the Senate vote first on whether they want to consider new evidence at all, even as more details from key witnesses emerged in recent weeks and John R. Bolton, Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser, said he would testify if subpoenaed. Mr. Bolton, for instance, has firsthand accounts of some of the White House’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to benefit Mr. Trump.

A majority of senators would have to agree to consider new evidence, and then they would vote on admitting specific witnesses or documents individually.

While the Senate trial commenced with hours of debate over the format of Mr. Trump’s trial, the president met with world leaders at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where he trumpeted the strong American economy, heaping praise upon himself.

But when Democrats called for the White House counsel, Pat A. Cipollone, to turn over documents related to the Ukraine matter, the White House hit back with a sharp statement on Mr. Trump’s behalf.

“The Democrats are an utter joke — they have no case, and this latest political stunt proves it,” said Hogan Gidley, a White House spokesman. “The idea that the counsel to the president has to turn over protected documents and confidential information is ludicrous, and to imply he can’t represent the president of the United States in an impeachment proceeding is completely absurd.”

Earlier on Tuesday, when Mr. Trump was asked a question about the impeachment trial, taking place thousands of miles away, he said, “That whole thing is a hoax.”

Mr. Trump is expected to be back in Washington Wednesday evening.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Impeachment Live: Highlights and Takeaways

Here’s what you need to know:

Video

Westlake Legal Group 21dc-live-mcconnellsub-superJumbo Impeachment Live: Highlights and Takeaways United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate Schumer, Charles E Schiff, Adam B Republican Party Politics and Government McConnell, Mitch impeachment Democratic Party

A debate is under way in the Senate over the ground rules the majority leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, has proposed for President Trump’s trial.CreditCredit…Erin Schaff/The New York Times

The Senate convened shortly after 1 p.m. on Tuesday to start in earnest the impeachment trial of Mr. Trump, who faces charges that he abused the power of his office and obstructed Congress. Senators were warned that they had to remain quiet, a skill that they rarely exercise in the Senate chamber, or face imprisonment.

The first order of business was a debate over the format of the trial, a draft of which Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, released on Monday. Democrats spent the morning lashing out against Mr. McConnell’s plan, accusing him and other Republicans of trying to cover up Mr. Trump’s actions.

Unlike most other debates in the Senate, the elected senators will not be doing the debating. Instead, the seven House impeachment managers, who are serving as prosecutors in the case, and Mr. Trump’s legal defense team will argue over the rules that will govern the proceedings. The first round of the debate on Tuesday lasted less than two hours, which was the total amount of time allowed.

After a brief recess, the House managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team started to debate an amendment from the top Democrat in the Senate, Chuck Schumer of New York, which included calling for the subpoena of Mr. Trump’s acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to provide documents and records related to Trump objectives with Ukraine.

Less than a day after releasing his rules proposal and drawing outrage from Democrats, Mr. McConnell submitted to the Senate a modified version with two significant changes. The most notable was a provision automatically entering evidence collected during the House impeachment inquiry into the trial record. The earlier version of Mr. McConnell’s proposal would have put the decision of whether to admit the House evidence to a Senate vote.

Mr. McConnell also gave the House impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team an additional day to argue their cases under the proposed rules the Senate began considering Tuesday afternoon. The initial proposal gave each side up to 24 hours over two days — a time frame Democrats criticized because it could push key testimony into early morning hours, when most Americans would be sleeping.

Each side still gets a total of 24 hours to present, but spreading it across three days will give both legal teams more time to lay out their cases and end the days earlier. Mr. McConnell made the changes after key Republican senators, including Susan Collins of Maine, argued that the rules for Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial should not deviate significantly from the rules used during the only modern precedent, the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton in 1999. In that trial, the Senate gave each side 24 hours to present their opening arguments, with no other limit on how the time was used.

Ms. Collins, a moderate Republican who is likely to face a tough re-election bid later this year, has significant sway with Mr. McConnell, as her votes could change the outcome of the trial.

Even as Democrats lodged an unexpected victory Tuesday with the changes Mr. McConnell made to his proposed rules for the trial, they are still hoping to persuade some Republicans to join them in making other changes to the proceedings that Mr. McConnell opposes.

“The real test will be if they pressure Senator McConnell to allow witnesses and documents,” Mr. Schumer said in a statement during a brief break in the trial.

Mr. McConnell’s plan would have the Senate vote first on whether they want to consider new evidence at all, even as more details from key witnesses emerged in recent weeks and John R. Bolton, Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser, said he would testify if subpoenaed. Mr. Bolton has firsthand accounts of some of the White House’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to benefit Mr. Trump.

A majority of senators would have to agree to consider new evidence, and then they would vote on admitting specific witnesses or documents individually.

While the Senate trial commenced with hours of debate over the format of Mr. Trump’s trial, the president met with world leaders at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where he trumpeted the strong American economy, heaping praise upon himself.

But when Democrats called for the White House counsel, Pat A. Cipollone, to turn over documents related to the Ukraine matter, the White House hit back with a sharp statement on Mr. Trump’s behalf.

“The Democrats are an utter joke — they have no case, and this latest political stunt proves it,” said Hogan Gidley, a White House spokesman. “The idea that the counsel to the president has to turn over protected documents and confidential information is ludicrous, and to imply he can’t represent the president of the United States in an impeachment proceeding is completely absurd.”

Earlier on Tuesday, when Mr. Trump was asked a question about the impeachment trial, taking place thousands of miles away, he said, “That whole thing is a hoax.”

President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, whose call with Mr. Trump led to the whistle-blower complaint that jump-started the impeachment inquiry, is also at the Davos forum. It was unclear if the two world leaders would meet at some point.

While impeachment loomed large over Mr. Trump and his aides, the president’s economic policies drew a favorable response among the wealthy audience at Davos, many of whom were wary of what a progressive Democrat taking over the Oval Office could mean for them.

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Impeachment Live Stream: Highlights and Takeaways

Here’s what you need to know:

Video

Westlake Legal Group 21dc-live-mcconnellsub-videoSixteenByNine3000 Impeachment Live Stream: Highlights and Takeaways United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate Schumer, Charles E Schiff, Adam B Republican Party Politics and Government McConnell, Mitch impeachment Democratic Party

A debate is under way in the Senate over the ground rules the majority leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, has proposed for President Trump’s trial.CreditCredit…Erin Schaff/The New York Times

The Senate convened shortly after 1 p.m. on Tuesday to start in earnest the impeachment trial of Mr. Trump, who faces charges that he abused the power of his office and obstructed Congress. Senators were warned that they had to remain quiet, a skill that they rarely exercise in the Senate chamber, or face imprisonment.

The first order of business was a debate over the format of the trial, a draft of which Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, released on Monday. Democrats spent the morning lashing out against Mr. McConnell’s plan, accusing him and other Republicans of trying to cover up Mr. Trump’s actions.

Unlike most other debates in the Senate, the elected senators will not be doing the debating. Instead, the seven House impeachment managers, who are serving as prosecutors in the case, and Mr. Trump’s legal defense team will argue over the rules that will govern the proceedings. The first round of the debate on Tuesday is expected to last two hours.

The House impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team will each have an additional day to argue their cases under the proposed rules the Senate began considering Tuesday afternoon.

This is a change from Mr. McConnell’s initial proposal, which gave each side up to 24 hours over two days — a time frame Democrats criticized because it could push key testimony into early morning hours, when most Americans would be sleeping.

Each side still gets a total of 24 hours to present, but spreading it across three days will give both legal teams more time to lay out their cases and end the days earlier.

Mr. McConnell made the change after key Republican senators, including Susan Collins of Maine, argued that the rules for Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial should not deviate from the rules used during the only modern precedent, the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton in 1999.

Ms. Collins, a moderate Republican who is likely to face a tough re-election bid later this year, has significant sway with Mr. McConnell, as her votes could change the outcome of the trial.

For weeks, Mr. McConnell, who has significant control over how the trial unfolds, has said Mr. Trump’s trial would be modeled after the Senate’s structure for Mr. Clinton’s trial.

But the proposal Mr. McConnell released Monday evening had some significant differences, including a provision that would speed up the time allowed for opening arguments. It would also allow admitting the records generated by the House impeachment inquiry into evidence only if a majority of senators agree to doing so. In the Clinton trial, those records were admitted automatically. Mr. McConnell appeared to walk back that change Tuesday. The rules he submitted to the Senate would automatically enter the evidence collected by the House impeachment inquiry into the Senate record of the trial.

Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of New York and one of seven House impeachment managers who will argue for impeaching President Trump during the Senate trial, said Tuesday that a key element of the rules for Mr. Clinton’s trial was that they were agreed on by the Senate’s top Republican and Democrat.

Mr. McConnell’s Democratic counterpart, Mr. Schumer of New York, was not consulted.

Democrats have also pushed for the trial rules to allow for calling witnesses and admitting new documents into evidence. Mr. McConnell’s plan would have the Senate first vote on whether they want to consider new evidence at all. If a majority of senators agreed to do so, then they would vote on admitting specific witnesses or documents individually.

Mr. Schiff said what Mr. McConnell had offered did “not describe the process for a fair trial.”

Mr. Schumer said the first amendment he planned to offer to Mr. McConnell’s rules would require the Senate to subpoena White House documents related to the charges against Mr. Trump.

While the Senate trial commenced with hours of debate over the format of Mr. Trump’s trial, the president met with world leaders at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where he trumpeted the strong American economy, heaping praise upon himself.

But when Democrats called for the White House counsel, Pat A. Cipollone, to turn over documents related to the Ukraine matter, the White House hit back with a sharp statement on Mr. Trump’s behalf.

“The Democrats are an utter joke — they have no case, and this latest political stunt proves it,” said Hogan Gidley, a White House spokesman. “The idea that the counsel to the president has to turn over protected documents and confidential information is ludicrous, and to imply he can’t represent the president of the United States in an impeachment proceeding is completely absurd.”

Earlier on Tuesday, when Mr. Trump was asked a question about the impeachment trial, taking place thousands of miles away, he said, “That whole thing is a hoax.”

President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, whose call with Mr. Trump led to the whistle-blower complaint that jump-started the impeachment inquiry, is also at the Davos forum. It was unclear if the two world leaders would meet at some point.

While impeachment loomed large over Mr. Trump and his aides, the president’s economic policies drew a favorable response among the wealthy audience at Davos, many of whom were wary of what a progressive Democrat taking over the Oval Office could mean for them.

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Impeachment Live Stream: Highlights and Takeaways

Here’s what you need to know:

Video

Westlake Legal Group 21dc-live-mcconnellsub-videoSixteenByNine3000 Impeachment Live Stream: Highlights and Takeaways United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate Schumer, Charles E Schiff, Adam B Republican Party Politics and Government McConnell, Mitch impeachment Democratic Party

A debate is under way in the Senate over the ground rules the majority leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, has proposed for President Trump’s trial.CreditCredit…Erin Schaff/The New York Times

The Senate convened shortly after 1 p.m. on Tuesday to start in earnest the impeachment trial of Mr. Trump, who faces charges that he abused the power of his office and obstructed Congress. Senators were warned that they had to remain quiet, a skill that they rarely exercise in the Senate chamber, or face imprisonment.

The first order of business was a debate over the format of the trial, a draft of which Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, released on Monday. Democrats spent the morning lashing out against Mr. McConnell’s plan, accusing him and other Republicans of trying to cover up Mr. Trump’s actions.

Unlike most other debates in the Senate, the elected senators will not be doing the debating. Instead, the seven House impeachment managers, who are serving as prosecutors in the case, and Mr. Trump’s legal defense team will argue over the rules that will govern the proceedings. The first round of the debate on Tuesday is expected to last two hours.

The House impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team will each have an additional day to argue their cases under the proposed rules the Senate began considering Tuesday afternoon.

This is a change from Mr. McConnell’s initial proposal, which gave each side up to 24 hours over two days — a time frame Democrats criticized because it could push key testimony into early morning hours, when most Americans would be sleeping.

Each side still gets a total of 24 hours to present, but spreading it across three days will give both legal teams more time to lay out their cases and end the days earlier.

Mr. McConnell made the change after key Republican senators, including Susan Collins of Maine, argued that the rules for Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial should not deviate from the rules used during the only modern precedent, the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton in 1999.

Ms. Collins, a moderate Republican who is likely to face a tough re-election bid later this year, has significant sway with Mr. McConnell, as her votes could change the outcome of the trial.

For weeks, Mr. McConnell, who has significant control over how the trial unfolds, has said Mr. Trump’s trial would be modeled after the Senate’s structure for Mr. Clinton’s trial.

But the proposal Mr. McConnell released Monday evening had some significant differences, including a provision that would speed up the time allowed for opening arguments. It would also allow admitting the records generated by the House impeachment inquiry into evidence only if a majority of senators agree to doing so. In the Clinton trial, those records were admitted automatically. Mr. McConnell appeared to walk back that change Tuesday. The rules he submitted to the Senate would automatically enter the evidence collected by the House impeachment inquiry into the Senate record of the trial.

Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of New York and one of seven House impeachment managers who will argue for impeaching President Trump during the Senate trial, said Tuesday that a key element of the rules for Mr. Clinton’s trial was that they were agreed on by the Senate’s top Republican and Democrat.

Mr. McConnell’s Democratic counterpart, Mr. Schumer of New York, was not consulted.

Democrats have also pushed for the trial rules to allow for calling witnesses and admitting new documents into evidence. Mr. McConnell’s plan would have the Senate first vote on whether they want to consider new evidence at all. If a majority of senators agreed to do so, then they would vote on admitting specific witnesses or documents individually.

Mr. Schiff said what Mr. McConnell had offered did “not describe the process for a fair trial.”

Mr. Schumer said the first amendment he planned to offer to Mr. McConnell’s rules would require the Senate to subpoena White House documents related to the charges against Mr. Trump.

While the Senate trial commenced with hours of debate over the format of Mr. Trump’s trial, the president met with world leaders at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where he trumpeted the strong American economy, heaping praise upon himself.

But when Democrats called for the White House counsel, Pat A. Cipollone, to turn over documents related to the Ukraine matter, the White House hit back with a sharp statement on Mr. Trump’s behalf.

“The Democrats are an utter joke — they have no case, and this latest political stunt proves it,” said Hogan Gidley, a White House spokesman. “The idea that the counsel to the president has to turn over protected documents and confidential information is ludicrous, and to imply he can’t represent the president of the United States in an impeachment proceeding is completely absurd.”

Earlier on Tuesday, when Mr. Trump was asked a question about the impeachment trial, taking place thousands of miles away, he said, “That whole thing is a hoax.”

President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, whose call with Mr. Trump led to the whistle-blower complaint that jump-started the impeachment inquiry, is also at the Davos forum. It was unclear if the two world leaders would meet at some point.

While impeachment loomed large over Mr. Trump and his aides, the president’s economic policies drew a favorable response among the wealthy audience at Davos, many of whom were wary of what a progressive Democrat taking over the Oval Office could mean for them.

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Trump Focuses on Economy at Davos, Seeking a Counter to Impeachment

Westlake Legal Group 21prexy-davos1sub-promo-facebookJumbo-v2 Trump Focuses on Economy at Davos, Seeking a Counter to Impeachment United States Politics and Government United States Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Switzerland High Net Worth Individuals Global Warming Ethics and Official Misconduct Davos (Switzerland)

DAVOS, Switzerland — President Trump swept into this glitzy Alpine village on Tuesday, full of flattery as he schmoozed with global business leaders, as if there were no talk of removing him from office and no impeachment trial unfolding 4,000 miles away in Washington.

Mr. Trump appeared to relish the escape offered by the World Economic Forum and the friendly — to his face, at least — crowd of elites in the snow-covered Alps. He was in a jovial mood, according to people who spoke with him, engaging in animated conversations with chief executives like Brian Moynihan of Bank of America, Sundar Pichai of Alphabet and Marc Benioff of Salesforce.

He congratulated them on their companies’ stock performances and joked that he should have bought shares but that he had been forced to sell his holdings when he took office. As Mr. Trump and his family members darted between meetings in makeshift pavilions, they studiously avoided questions about the drama back home, where the Senate was expected to begin a fierce partisan squabble over the rules for putting the president on trial.

Mr. Trump’s trip to Davos was his first appearance on the international stage since Speaker Nancy Pelosi sent the articles of impeachment to the Senate. Before he arrived in the Swiss town, the open question, as always with Mr. Trump, was how much he would stray from his script and vent his grievances about his legal and political predicament.

But Mr. Trump stuck to his prepared remarks, making inflated claims about his role in a global economic recovery and touting a message of America’s supremacy. When reporters asked him about the impeachment trial, he swatted it away as “just a hoax.”

“America’s economy was in a rather dismal state,” Mr. Trump said during his 30-minute speech. “Before my presidency began, the outlook for many economies was bleak.”

Although the economy’s recovery after its plummet was central to President Barack Obama’s legacy, Mr. Trump said that his administration had created a “roaring geyser of opportunity” and proclaimed that “the American dream is back bigger, better and stronger than ever before.”

Addressing a global audience, Mr. Trump delivered what amounted to a version of his campaign speech, speaking little of international alliances and touting America’s supremacy in the world.

At a conference that has dedicated itself this year to the issue of global warming, Mr. Trump also took a swipe at those demanding action. He announced that the United States would join an initiative to plant a trillion trees that was launched at the event, but he also declared that “we must reject the perennial prophets of doom” and that it was “not a time for pessimism.”

Former Vice President Al Gore, who was seen leaving Mr. Trump’s speech, declined to comment on the president’s remarks.

Mr. Trump arrived in Switzerland on Tuesday morning, taking a ride in Marine One over the Alps, from Zurich to Davos. The altitude increased the sense that the bitter partisan fight that would take place in the Capitol was a world away.

As his motorcade made its way through twisty, snow-covered streets to the Davos Congress Centre, a group of nine Swiss tenors entertained the crowd with a version of “Ranz des vaches,” a mellifluous song for calling home cows.

It was a more peaceful serenade than the songs that typically precede Mr. Trump’s entrance onstage, like “Macho Man” by the Village People and “Sympathy for the Devil” by the Rolling Stones.

Mr. Trump was also a more mellow version of himself.

He highlighted the first phase of his trade deal with China and another with Mexico and Canada. And the audience appeared receptive, having warmed to him over the past two years as they have benefited from his policies.

“Lev Parnas is not a topic of conversation at Davos,” said Ian Bremmer, the president and founder of Eurasia Group, a political research and consulting firm.

Mr. Parnas, an associate of Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani, has been on a media tour over the past week, asserting that the president was fully aware of the campaign to pressure Ukraine to investigate Mr. Trump’s political rivals. Democrats have not ruled out trying to call Mr. Parnas as a witness in the impeachment trial.

In Davos, however, television screens were filled with the face of a different Trump antagonist: the teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg, who was the other star speaker of the day. In a speech there, she warned that “our house is still on fire” and that “inaction is fueling the flames by the hour.”

Mr. Trump did not mention Ms. Thunberg by name in his speech. But when he talked about the importance of clean water and clean air, he added that “fear and doubt is not a good thought process.”

His speech also included inflated or false claims that seemed, at times, disconnected from the concerns of an international audience.

“I saved HBCUs. We saved them,” Mr. Trump claimed, referring to historically black colleges and universities. “They were going out and we saved them.” While the administration has increased investment in the schools 14.3 percent, and although a number of them have struggled financially, there is no evidence that they were on the verge of extinction. In the past six years, one has closed and about 100 remain.

Hanging over the conference was also the question of whether Mr. Trump would try to stage a surprise meeting there with President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, even though officials said the optics of such a meeting would be unhelpful to Mr. Trump.

In Davos, however, Mr. Trump may have found the right audience for support to counter the impeachment trial that is dominating the news at home. There was less anxiety about him rippling through the 1 percent set on Tuesday than when he arrived at the annual forum two years ago, fresh off an “America First” campaign filled with promises to rip up international agreements and alliances.

This time, there was more concern about some of the progressive Democrats running to replace him. Through regulatory rollbacks, tax cuts and the success of the global economy, the president who ran as a populist has benefited many of the chief executives gathered at the event, even those who have taken public positions against some of his policies.

“There are lot of masters of the universe who think he may not be their cup of tea, but he’s been a godsend,” said Mr. Bremmer, of Eurasia Group. “It’s interesting to hear Mike Bloomberg saying he would fund Bernie Sanders’s campaign if he won the nomination. Very few people here would say that.”

Mr. Bloomberg, the billionaire former mayor of New York City who is running for president, has said he is open to spending $1 billion to defeat Mr. Trump, whoever emerges as the Democratic nominee.

During Mr. Trump’s career in New York real estate, entertainment and business, he never cracked the Davos set, whose Fortune 500 chief executives dismissed him as something of a gaudy sideshow.

But the balance of power has shifted. And with progressives like Mr. Sanders and Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts emerging as top-tier candidates in the Democratic primary, a crowd that once rejected Mr. Trump is now more willing to consider him one of its own.

On Tuesday, Mr. Trump happily embraced them back. After his speech, he met with the International Business Council, where he greeted every chief executive personally, according to attendees.

The meeting was less about substance and more about socializing, one attendee said, as Mr. Trump grilled corporate leaders about whether they liked his speech. His daughter, Ivanka Trump, and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, also worked the room.

There were however, still points of contention during the conference for Mr. Trump, who planned to spend almost two days there in bilateral meetings with leaders of Iraq, Pakistan and the Kurdish regional government, as well as sitdowns with corporate chieftains. (The forum is also Mr. Trump’s first trip abroad since the drone attack that killed Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, Iran’s most important military official.)

And topping the conference’s agenda was climate change, an issue where Mr. Trump’s agenda is far out of line with the rest of the attendees. He was preceded onstage by Klaus Schwab, a founder of the Forum, who proclaimed that “the world is in a state of emergency,” and Simonetta Sommaruga, the president of the Swiss Federation, who said that “the world is on fire.”

Mr. Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris Climate Accord, and his administration has expanded the use of coal, played down concerns about climate change and rolled back environmental protections.

The president mocked Ms. Thunberg after she was chosen last month as Time magazine’s Person of the Year. “So ridiculous,” he tweeted. “Greta must work on her anger management problem, then go to a good old-fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Greta, Chill!”

In 2018, Mr. Trump was the first sitting president to attend the forum since President Bill Clinton did so in 2000. Last year, he abruptly canceled his plans to attend, citing a partial government shutdown.

This year, the administration delegation includes Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, as well as Robert Lighthizer, the trade representative. Other members of the administration who were expected to attend were Wilbur Ross, the commerce secretary; Elaine Chao, the transportation secretary; and Eugene Scalia, the labor secretary. Mr. Trump was also accompanied by Mick Mulvaney, the acting chief of staff, and Stephen Miller, his policy adviser and speechwriter.

Keith Bradsher contributed reporting.

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What to Expect as the Trump Impeachment Trial Begins Today

Westlake Legal Group 21dc-whattowatch-facebookJumbo What to Expect as the Trump Impeachment Trial Begins Today United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Senate impeachment

WASHINGTON — After ceremonially opening its impeachment trial of President Trump last week, the Senate reconvenes on Tuesday to begin what is expected to be a bruising partisan fight over the charges that the president abused his office and unconstitutionally obstructed Congress.

The seven Democratic House impeachment managers could begin making their case on the Senate floor on Wednesday, and will be followed by the president’s legal defense team. But first, senators will haggle on Tuesday over the trial rules introduced on Monday by Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader.

What we’re expecting to see: The Senate’s debate over rules and procedures governing the trial will most likely culminate in a party-line vote to adopt Republicans’ preferred approach. The House will also file a rebuttal to Mr. Trump’s written defense.

When we’re likely to see it: A draft of the proposed Republican rules was released Monday evening, but debate will not begin until the trial convenes at 1 p.m. Eastern. The House’s brief is due at noon.

How to follow it: The New York Times’s congressional team will be following the developments on Capitol Hill and reporters covering the White House will get the latest from Mr. Trump’s defense team. Visit nytimes.com throughout the day for live coverage.

When President Bill Clinton went on trial in the Senate 21 years ago, senators came together to adopt a resolution governing the first phase of the trial in a vote of 100 to 0, setting a bipartisan tone they hoped would guide the Senate and the country through a contentious process.

Not this time. Republicans and Democrats are bracing for an initial battle over witnesses and other measures that will almost certainly fracture the Senate along party lines on Day 1.

Mr. McConnell’s proposed rules put off a debate over whether to call witnesses and compel new evidence until the middle of the trial.

Senate Democrats say that may have worked in the past, but this case is different. Mr. Trump systematically blocked testimony in the House impeachment inquiry from a dozen government officials and refused to hand over a single document, and now, Democrats say, the Senate has an obligation to set it right.

They are also displeased that Mr. McConnell is trying to speed up the trial by capping the number of days the managers and defense lawyers have to present their cases, and that his proposal would not automatically include the House’s impeachment evidence as a part of the Senate trial record.

Given the unusual requirements of a Senate impeachment trial, the resolution will be debated in the open not by the senators themselves, but by the House managers and the defense team. acting as proxies for the Democrats and Republicans.

If senators want to engage in their own debate, they will have to go into private session, closing the Senate doors, kicking out reporters and shutting off the television cameras until they reach a resolution.

Democrats are ready to force amendment votes that would call witnesses or evidence to pressure moderate Republicans like Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Cory Gardner of Colorado and others, but Mr. McConnell is expected to hold all 53 Republicans to his position. Each such vote could take up to two hours.

Both sides expect debate to go late into the night.

If the Senate adopts Mr. McConnell’s proposal on Tuesday, the trial could move promptly to opening arguments on Wednesday.

As the prosecution, the House managers will present their case first. They will lay out in detail their case that Mr. Trump pressured Ukraine to announce investigations into his political rivals by withholding almost $400 million in military aid and a White House meeting for its leader — and then concealed it from Congress by blocking witnesses and documents.

Next up will be the president’s defense team — including Ken Starr, the former independent counsel who pursued Mr. Clinton, and Alan Dershowitz, a famed constitutional law scholar — who intend to argue that Mr. Trump was merely acting in the United States’ best interest and that the charges constitute little more than political attack by Democrats.

Like in 1999, both sides are expected to technically have 24 hours to do so. But unlike then, Republicans will insist that they squeeze that time into just two marathon days apiece instead of spreading each side’s argument over three or four days. The opening arguments could be completed on Saturday, or slip into next week.

The sparring over witnesses and documents beginning on Tuesday will most likely take center stage at some point next week, after opening arguments are complete and senators have a day or two to question the prosecution and defense.

Under Mr. McConnell’s proposed rules, senators will take an up-or-down vote on whether to even consider calling new witnesses and documents. If a majority says yes, the managers and defense lawyer would then offer individual proposals for votes. If the majority votes no, the trial could move toward a final debate about innocence and guilt based on the evidence already in the public record.

The outcome is anyone’s guess. Democrats need four Republicans to join them if they have a shot at compelling new evidence. Seeking to pressure moderates, retiring lawmakers and those up for re-election in swing states, they have argued aggressively and repeatedly that a trial without witnesses would not only be unprecedented but essentially a Senate-sponsored cover-up of Mr. Trump’s actions.

But even if senators do vote to call witnesses, the president could try to use his executive power or the courts to stop their testimony, delaying the trial indefinitely. The pressure from Republican leaders, who want the trial over promptly, will be strong to skip witnesses regardless.

Or conservative Republicans could try to strike a deal, pairing one witness Mr. Trump wants to testify, like Hunter Biden, with each one that Democrats and a handful of Republicans succeeded in calling. The trial could quickly spool out in unforeseeable directions.

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A Challenge for the Trial: 100 Senators Who Love to Talk, Sitting in Silence

Westlake Legal Group 20dc-tot1-facebookJumbo A Challenge for the Trial: 100 Senators Who Love to Talk, Sitting in Silence Wyden, Ron United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Toomey, Patrick J Tester, Jon Senate Roberts, Pat Roberts, John G Jr Murray, Patty McConnell, Mitch Lankford, James impeachment Graham, Lindsey Feinstein, Dianne Collins, Susan M Clinton, Bill Blunt, Roy D

WASHINGTON — In the Senate, there are few things of more value to a lawmaker than the sound of his or her own voice.

Inside the gilded chamber, senators vocalize their votes — calling out “aye” or “nay” — make speeches on all manner of subjects — meaty policy addresses, weekly odes to exemplary constituents, even acknowledgments of wedding anniversaries — haggle over legislation, and generally sound off to their hearts’ content.

So President Trump’s impeachment trial poses a unique and particularly onerous challenge for the 100 senators of the 116th Congress: a daily vow of silence that will be in effect beginning at 1 p.m. and for the duration of the solemn proceedings, sometimes long into the night.

Senators will be confined to their desks, forced to stash their cellphones in cubbies and barred from speaking, even in hushed tones, as seven House impeachment managers and Mr. Trump’s defense team debate whether the president committed high crimes and misdemeanors.

“Every senator will have some trouble — we are not, by nature, silent,” said Senator Roy Blunt, Republican of Missouri and the chairman of the Senate Rules Committee. “The desire to hear the sound of your own voice will be frustrated by that rule.”

To remind them, sessions of the trial will begin each afternoon with the Senate sergeant-at-arms uttering a dramatic command that dates to 1868 and the nation’s first presidential impeachment trial: “All persons are commanded to keep silence, on pain of imprisonment.” (There is no record of a Senate forcing jail time on one of its own.)

It is a harsh reality for a typically talkative group. Matters of grave historical importance aside, they are unaccustomed to limitations on their ability to chat with colleagues, peruse the selections in the designated candy desk (carefully curated by Senator Patrick J. Toomey, Republican of Pennsylvania), or, in the words of Senator Pat Roberts of Kansas, noisily “mill around like cattle” in the chamber’s well.

“Would that be a record for you, sitting in silence for that amount of time?” Mr. Roberts asked Senator Ron Wyden, Democrat of Oregon, as the pair — both veterans of President Bill Clinton’s impeachment trial in 1999 — rode together recently on the Senate subway.

“My staff would probably say it’d be a record for me,” Mr. Roberts added. (Mr. Wyden, for his part, said he remembered some breaks for conversations and the ability to convey messages to the chief justice overseeing the proceedings.)

“You couldn’t talk to each other; you knew that you didn’t drink a cup of coffee before you went in,” Mr. Roberts said. “It was tough. It was extremely interesting and pertinent, but it was tough.”

Asked about the limitations, Senator James Lankford, Republican of Oklahoma, joked that “all of us are taking bets on Lindsey Graham,” the garrulous South Carolina Republican who spent the Clinton trial as an impeachment manager, making the case that the president should be removed from office for lying about an affair with a White House intern.

“That’s the only one I really know of that I’m really worried about for six hours,” Mr. Lankford said of Mr. Graham.

Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and the majority leader, made the challenge still steeper on Monday when he released proposed rules for the trial that would effectively require each side to squeeze their opening arguments into two 12-hour days — a true marathon of silence for the senators who will hear the case.

Other veterans from Mr. Clinton’s impeachment trial recalled occasionally chafing under the verbal restrictions, even when they were able to take breaks to go to the bathroom or relax in the cloakroom, a private lounge just off the Senate floor.

Senator Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, remembered subtly passing notes to a neighboring senator, Tim Hutchinson, then a freshman Republican from Arkansas, with occasional thoughts until, she said, she got too nervous about getting caught.

“It’s very natural for senators to want to comment on arguments that are being made,” Ms. Collins said in an interview. “And it’s very natural for us to want to have this ongoing commentary with our neighbors while we’re sitting there.”

“And that was before cellphones were prevalent,” she added. “This will be an unusually difficult challenge.”

The restrictions on device usage and talking are akin to the rules placed on a jury in a courtroom. If senators have questions and motions, they are to submit them in writing to Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who will preside over the trial. And when the Senate goes into closed session for debate, the chamber-controlled cameras will turn off — meaning there will be no public viewing of that.

On Thursday, as lawmakers prepared to take the 222-year-old oath of impartiality, there were some indications of the challenges ahead. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Democrat of California, could be seen stealing a glimpse at her cellphone while other senators — including those in pursuit of the presidential nomination — could be seen greeting colleagues while waiting in line to sign an oath book.

There are advantages to the vow of silence, some senators said, arguing that the controlled environment would help them focus and allow them to better digest the nuances of the arguments being made by both the House prosecution and the White House defense.

“We have to listen,” said Senator Patty Murray, Democrat of Washington State and a veteran of the Clinton trial. “We have to hear the evidence, and that’s what we’ll do.”

And at least one of the less technologically dependent senators appeared to be mildly delighted at the opportunity for silence.

“I sit on a tractor for 18 hours a day and my cellphone doesn’t work — this is like heaven to me,” Senator Jon Tester, Democrat of Montana and a farmer, said, chuckling, in a recent interview. “I think it’s going to be really interesting, and not having a cellphone is like — that’s my dream job.”

“I hope this is a case that everybody takes this very, very, very seriously,” he added, his voice growing solemn. “The truth is, this is serious business.”

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