On the opening day of just the third presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history, the Senate approved the rules for the trial of President Trump in a party-line vote, following a nearly 13-hour marathon session. Republican senators rejected 11 amendments from Democrats to subpoena documents and witnesses, including former national security adviser John Bolton. Democrats repeatedly accused the Republican leadership of orchestrating a cover-up by blocking witnesses at this stage in the trial. This is House impeachment manager Jerry Nadler.
Rep. Jerrold Nadler: “Ambassador Bolton has made clear that he is ready, willing and able to testify about everything he witnessed. But President Trump does not want you to hear from Ambassador Bolton. And the reason has nothing to do with executive privilege or this other nonsense. And the reason has nothing to do with national security. If the president cared about national security, he would not have blocked military assistance to a vulnerable strategic ally in the attempt to secure a personal political favor for himself. No, the president does not want you to hear from Ambassador Bolton, because the president does not want the American people to hear firsthand testimony about the misconduct at the heart of this trial.”
The Senate trial comes a month after the House impeached Trump for pressuring Ukraine to investigate his political rival Joe Biden. Since the House vote to impeach Trump, more evidence has come to light about the Trump administration’s actions, but it remains unclear if any of this evidence will be presented to the Senate. Just before midnight, the Office of Management and Budget released nearly 200 pages of heavily redacted records related to the Trump administration’s handling of aid to Ukraine.