McConnell Gives an Update: Does Pelosi Have the Courage to Hand Over Articles of Impeachment For a Trial?

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Posted: Jan 03, 2020 3:30 PM
McConnell Gives an Update: Does Pelosi Have the Courage to Hand Over Articles of Impeachment For a Trial?

Source: (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is back in Washington D.C. today and gave an update from the floor on impeachment. 

"The Senate will soon have to address some of the deepest institutional questions contemplated by our Constitution. We’ll have to decide whether we are going to safeguard core governing traditions or let short-term partisan rage overcome them," McConnell said. 

Before members of Congress went home for the Christmas and New Year recess, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced she would not be sending the articles of impeachment against President Trump to the Senate until she believed McConnell would conduct a "fair trial." During his remarks, McConnell stressed the Senate cannot move forward without the articles. 

"Ultimately House Democrats cared more about attacking President Trump than keeping their promises. So they rushed through a slapdash investigation. They decided not to bother with the standard legal processes for pursuing witnesses and evidence," he said. "Democrats have let 'Trump derangement syndrome' develop into the kind of dangerous partisan fever that our founding fathers were afraid of."

He also pointed out they did a sloppy job and want a do-over in the Senate, which isn't happening.

"We’ve heard it claimed that the same House Democrats who botched their own process should get to reach into the Senate and dictate our process. We’ve heard claims that it’s a problem that I have discussed trial mechanics with the White House, even as my counterpart the Democratic Leader is openly coordinating political strategy with Speaker Pelosi, who some might call the 'prosecution.' And we’ve heard claims that any senators who have formed opinions about House Democrats’ irresponsible and unprecedented actions as they played out in view of the entire nation should be disqualified from the next phase. Obviously this is all nonsense," he continued, calling Pelosi's demands to mold the Senate trial a non-starter. "Their turn is over. They have done enough damage. It’s the Senate’s turn now -- to render sober judgment as the framers envisioned. But we can’t hold a trial without the articles. The Senate’s own rules don’t provide for that. So, for now, we are content to continue the ordinary business of the Senate while House Democrats continue to flounder. For now."

"But if they ever muster the courage to stand behind their slapdash work product and transmit their articles to the Senate, it will be time for the United States Senate to fulfill our founding purpose," he concluded. 

As for a timeline, the House won't continue with any voting until Tuesday, January 7. Pelosi's office has given no indication about when or if she will be transmitting the articles of impeachment to Senate.