House leaders square off on impeachment, Pelosi may send articles next week

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Like many, she'd prefer a serious trial on the allegations that President Donald Trump conditioned the release of $391 million in congressionally approved military aid to Ukraine on the Ukraine government announcing investigations into Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son Hunter.

An impeachment trial against Donald Trump will be set in motion in the Senate next week, according to a letter sent on Friday by the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, to colleagues.

"There will be no unfair new rule book written exclusively for President Trump", McConnell said Thursday. He implicitly argued that it would be breaking Senate precedent to call witnesses - which would be true except for the niggling detail that witnesses were called in every single one of the previous 15 Senate impeachment proceedings.

"This process is not only unfair but created to deprive senators and the American people of crucial documents and testimony". The 2020 election will also play into the trial timeline, with the five Democratic senator-candidates likely hoping to get back on the campaign trail ahead of the February 3 Iowa caucuses - assuming they haven't already taken place.

McConnell had accused Pelosi of delaying the transmission of the articles out of a sense of embarrassment on the part of Democrats, he said, in the weakness of the case.

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At the same time, Mr McConnell signed on to a resolution from Sen Josh Hawley, R-Mo., to allow for the dismissal of articles of impeachment if the House doesn't transmit them in 25 days.

A new profile in TIME says that Pelosi "had been mulling the tactic since she heard former Nixon White House counsel John Dean float the idea on CNN on December 5".

"I will be consulting with you at our Tuesday House Democratic Caucus meeting on how we proceed further", Ms Pelosi wrote.

And pointing specifically to the report from the Wall Street Journal, Warren emphasized that the president "told his associates that he was under pressure to take Soleimani - and these were important senators who were going to be important to him during the impeachment process". She has put the House majority and her own speakership, her place in history, on the line.

The speaker has given no indication of who she is thinking of appointing but Nadler and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff are expected to be on the list along with a slate of diverse lawmakers. Former Trump national security adviser John Bolton's surprise offer to testify if subpoenaed by the Senate has already been rejected by McConnell. "Here you have a clear case where they hate Trump so much that they won't even commend American troops for killing one of the world's worst terrorists, which is what the resolution is about". Feinstein said. "If it isn't, don't send it over". During Bill Clinton's impeachment trial, Republicans sent 13 managers to the Senate but Pelosi may opt for a smaller group.

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