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"If the trial is rigged to keep hidden the most damning, most important, most relevant evidence, then it's not a trial. Nor is it an acquittal. It's a cover-up."

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GOP Accused of 'Greatest Cover-Up Since Watergate' as Senate Set to End First Witness-Less Impeachment Trial in US History

"If the trial is rigged to keep hidden the most damning, most important, most relevant evidence, then it's not a trial. Nor is it an acquittal. It's a cover-up."

by Jake Johnson, staff writer

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Friday accused the Republican Party of orchestrating the "greatest cover-up since Watergate" as the Senate prepared to debate and vote on whether to allow witnesses to testify in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial.

 

The Senate is widely expected as early as Friday evening to oppose permitting witnesses, given swing vote Sen. Lamar Alexander's (R-Tenn.) announcement late Thursday that he will vote no. Alexander's decision sparked widespread anger and the trending Twitter hashtag #LamarAlexanderIsACoward.

Schumer said during a press conference Friday that if the Senate votes against allowing witnesses, "the president's acquittal will be meaningless."

 

"This is about truth, and today the Senate will vote on whether witnesses and documents are allowed in this trial," said Schumer. "The importance of this vote is self-evident."

SCHUMER: "If my Republican colleagues refuse to even consider witnesses & documents in the trial, this country is headed towards the greatest coverup since Watergate ... [Trump] will conclude he can do it again, & Congress can do nothing about it. He can try to cheat again." pic.twitter.com/5vNB1tIQ9p

— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 31, 2020

The Senate at 1pm ET is scheduled to begin four hours of debate on whether to approve witnesses, followed by a vote. If the Republican-controlled chamber decides against allowing witnesses, it will be the first time in U.S. history the Senate has held an impeachment trial without witness testimony, according to PolitiFact.

 

A final vote on whether to acquit or remove Trump could come as early as Friday evening, but anonymous Republican senators and aides told Politico the trial could extend until next week if House Democratic impeachment managers push for more time to make closing arguments.

 

Just ahead of the Senate debate on witnesses, the New York Times reported that former national security adviser John Bolton—one of the potential witnesses in the trial—alleges in an unpublished book manuscript that Trump instructed him in May of 2019 to help with the "pressure campaign to extract damaging information on Democrats from Ukrainian officials."

 

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) tweeted Thursday night that the Senate will be "disgraced" if it votes to acquit Trump without hearing witness testimony or considering documentary evidence that the White House has withheld from Congress.

 

"If the trial is rigged to keep hidden the most damning, most important, most relevant evidence, then it's not a trial," wrote Murphy. "Nor is it an acquittal. It's a cover-up."

Progressive advocacy groups on Friday urged the U.S. public to continue calling their senators to demand witnesses:

WE HAVE A NUMBER FOR THAT! 
Call the Senate: 855-912-2982 https://t.co/xQAPiHkXBb

— MoveOn (@MoveOn) January 31, 2020

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, wrote in a pair of tweets Friday morning that "history will judge us for what happens next."

"Faith in our American institutions is at an all-time low," said Warren. "The fact that GOP senators are covering up the president's corruption with a sham impeachment trial without witnesses documents doesn't help."

Americans deserve to know that the President is using the power of his/her office to work in the nation’s interest, not his own personal interest. And they deserve a Senate with the political courage to stand up to a President that has abused his power & corrupted our government.

— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) January 31, 2020

Karen Hobert Flynn, president of government watchdog group Common Cause, warned in a letter (pdf) sent to every U.S. senator Thursday that ending the trial without witnesses "could undermine our democracy for generations."

 

"This is much bigger than President Trump," Hobert Flynn wrote. "Preventing witnesses, evidence, and transparency in President Trump's impeachment trial potentially undermines the Constitution for generations."

 

"Americans deserve nothing less than the full truth," she added. "They deserve to see a fair trial, and they are watching closely to see if Senate Republicans fulfill their constitutional duty to serve as an impartial jury or blindly conduct a rigged trial."

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No one should pretend, as do 249 out of 250 Republican members of Congress, that there is insufficient evidence to even open an impeachment inquiry. Trump has committed more criminal and unconstitutional conduct than any previous president …

 

Article 1. Donald J. Trump, in violation of his oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, and to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has obstructed the administration of justice:

 

1. He attempted to fire Mueller. The Mueller report found “substantial evidence . . . that the President’s attempts to remove the Special Counsel were linked to the Special Counsel’s oversight of investigations that involved the President’s conduct.”

 

2. Trump attempted to curtail Mueller’s investigation. Mueller found “that the President’s effort to have [Attorney General Jeff] Sessions limit the scope of the Special Counsel’s investigation to future election interference was intended to prevent further investigative scrutiny of the President’s and his campaign’s conduct.”

 

3. He ordered White House counsel Donald McGahn to falsify the record to conceal his attempts to fire Mueller. Mueller found that Trump “acted . . . in order to deflect or prevent further scrutiny of the President’s conduct.”

 

4. He fired FBI Director James B. Comey, Mueller found, because of “Comey’s unwillingness to publicly state that the President was not personally under investigation.”

 

Moreover, Mueller wrote, by firing Comey “the President wanted to protect himself from an investigation into his campaign,” because he knew “that a thorough FBI investigation would uncover facts about the campaign and the President personally that the President could have understood to be crimes or that would give rise to personal and political concerns.” Trump showed awareness of guilt by advancing “a pretextual reason to the press and the public for Comey’s termination.”

 

5. He tried to dissuade Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, Michael Cohen, Roger Stone, and other witnesses from cooperating with the government. The non-cooperation of Manafort and Stone, in particular, made it impossible to establish the exact nature of the relationship between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.

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Article II. Donald J. Trump, in violation of his oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, and to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, failed to defend America from foreign election interference. As a candidate, he welcomed Russian intervention in the 2016 election and refused to notify the proper authorities of contacts between his campaign and representatives of Russia and WikiLeaks.

 

As president, he denied that the Russian attack had even occurred, accepted Russian President Vladimir Putin’s false denials of responsibility, and showed no interest in determining the full scale of the attack. He repeatedly called the Russia investigation a “hoax” and a “witch hunt” even though Mueller determined “that there were multiple, systematic efforts to interfere in our election” and that “the matters we investigated were of paramount importance.”

 

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Article III. Donald J. Trump, in violation of his oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, and to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, attempted to investigate and prosecute his political opponents. On three occasions, Mueller found, Trump asked the Justice Department to initiate investigations of Hillary Clinton. More recently, Trump and his attorney, Rudolph W. Giuliani, attempted to initiate an investigation of Joe Biden.

 

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Article IV. Donald J. Trump, in violation of his oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, and to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, failed to produce papers and testimony as duly directed by Congress. Trump obstructed at least 20 inquiries relating to his taxes, business records, the Mueller investigation and other matters.

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Article V. Donald J. Trump, in violation of federal campaign finance laws, conspired with his attorney Michael Cohen in order to conceal alleged relationships with adult film actress Stormy Daniels and Playboy playmate Karen McDougal before the 2016 election.

 

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Article VI. Donald J. Trump, in violation of his oath to uphold Article 1, section 9 of the Constitution (“No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by law”), attempted to misuse his emergency powers to spend funds on a border wall that Congress did not appropriate.

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Article VII. Donald J. Trump, in violation of his oath to uphold the emoluments clauses (which forbid the president from accepting benefits from foreign and state governments without the permission of Congress) retains ownership of a global business empire which allows him to benefit from dealings with foreign and state governments.

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Trump has committed more criminal and unconstitutional conduct than any previous president in U.S. history. If they refuse to impeach him, members of Congress will violate their own oaths to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

 

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No one should pretend, as do 249 out of 250 Republican members of Congress, that there is insufficient evidence to even open an impeachment inquiry. Trump has committed more criminal and unconstitutional conduct than any previous president …

 

This man Rump, any new radical right wing slob and the greater majority of the radical right wing anti american conservatives should never get reelected ever. Are real moderate republicans not paying attention? There is not a worthwhile GOP candidate on the slate anywhere.

 

Liberals and moderates must vote Bernie Sanders for President, put Elizabeth Warren in control of the financial industry and Alexandria Cortez as Chief of Staff.

How many times and ways has Pres Trump and associates committed obstruction of justice? Many

 

No one should pretend, as do 249 out of 250 Republican members of Congress, that there is insufficient evidence to even open an impeachment inquiry. Trump has committed more criminal and unconstitutional conduct than any previous president …

 

Blame the entire GOP for allowing Trump to be a dictator aka a party that will not stand up for Americans, the Constitution or the Bill of Rights. The party with no spine.

 

Blame the other criminals for NOT saying NO I will not violate the law,

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No one should pretend, as do 249 out of 250 Republican members of Congress, that there is insufficient evidence to even open an impeachment inquiry. Trump has committed more criminal and unconstitutional conduct than any previous president …

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Ok, you do know (hopefully by now after being told at 4,567 times) That the Senate deliberates on the evidence the house presents. They do not call witnesses. LEARN SOMETHING FOR GODS SAKE PLEASE!

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