Here is How Questioning From Senators Will Be Handled During the Impeachment Trial Today

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Posted: Jan 29, 2020 7:00 AM
Here is How Questioning From Senators Will Be Handled During the Impeachment Trial Today

Source: (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

After five days of opening arguments from Democrat impeachment managers and attorneys representing President Donald Trump, Senators will now be able to submit their questions to each side. Here is how things will work. 

Like in the Clinton trial, Republicans and Democrats will alternate questions. The questions will only be directed toward Democrat House managers and attorneys representing President Trump. Senators are not allowed to ask each other questions and cannot directly challenge answers once they were given. Questions will not be asked by Senators directly, but instead will be submitted in writing to Chief Justice John Roberts, who will then read them out loud. The questions cannot be asked anonymously and must be signed by the Senators submitting the question. Questions can also be submitted as a group and around a dozen questions will be allowed before Majority Leader Mitch McConnell calls for a break. Democrat managers and attorneys for the President can take as much time as they'd like to answer submitted question. There is no time limit on their response. 

Like previous days, the Senate will convene at 1 pm et to begin. 

Sixteen hours have been allotted for questioning. When the questioning period is over, the Senate will vote on whether to call new witnesses not previously interviewed during the House inquiry. As of Tuesday night, McConnell reportedly does not have enough votes to block additional and new witnesses from being called or subpoenaed. 

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A source with knowledge of McConnell’s comments confirmed to Fox Business that the Kentucky Republican told people in a private meeting Tuesday that the GOP did not have the votes to block impeachment witnesses. A second source stressed that McConnell said he didn’t yet have the votes, with other sources saying Senate GOP leadership didn’t think the fight was over, and conversations were ongoing. The Wall Street Journal first reported McConnell’s comments.