The Senate Impeachment Trial: 8 Things You Need to Know

The Daily Signal | 1/20/2020 | Staff
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The House of Representatives has chosen members to participate in the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, and they have presented the articles of impeachment to the Senate.

This is only the third impeachment trial of a president in our nation’s history, with the others occurring in 1868 for Andrew Johnson and 1999 for Bill Clinton.

Things - Senate - Prepares - Trump - Trial

Here are eight things you need to know as the Senate prepares to begin Trump’s impeachment trial.

When will the trial start, and how long will it last?

Jan - Senate - President - Pro - Tempore

On Jan. 16, Senate President Pro Tempore Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, administered the oath to Chief Justice John Roberts, who will preside over the trial.

Roberts, in turn, administered the oath to all senators. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced that the trial itself will begin at 1:00 p.m. on Jan. 21.

Clinton - Impeachment - Weeks - Johnson - Weeks

The Clinton impeachment took five weeks, and Johnson’s lasted 11 weeks. The Senate’s impeachment trial rules, adopted in 1986, mandate that the trial should begin at noon and last until the Senate decides to adjourn, Monday through Saturday, “until final judgment shall be rendered.”

2. What happens at the trial?

Trial - Trial - Similarities - House - Managers

An impeachment trial is not like a run-of-the-mill trial, but it does have some similarities. House managers will act as the prosecution, presenting the case for impeachment to the senators, whose role is a combination of judge and jury.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., announced the seven members of the House who will serve as the managers, including Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y.

Team - Lawyers - President - Defense - White

A team of lawyers will put on the president’s defense, including White House Counsel Pat Cipollone; Trump’s personal attorney, Jay Sekulow; and former independent counsel Ken Starr, whose investigation into the Whitewater controversy led to Clinton’s impeachment.

Roberts will preside over the trial, consistent with Article 3, Section 6 of the...
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