Trump impeachment trial: Senators begin questioning period

National

WASHINGTON (WFLA) – All 100 U.S. senators will get a chance over the next two days to ask questions in President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial after hearing opening arguments from both the prosecution and the defense teams.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Tuesday he had reached an agreement with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on the questioning period. It’s set to begin Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET and will last approximately 8 hours. Another 8 hours of questioning is scheduled for Thursday. All questions that will be asked on the Senate floor will be written and submitted to Chief Justice John Roberts.

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The questioning period comes after six days of opening arguments. Democratic House impeachment managers, the prosecutors, used almost all of the 24 hours they were allotted over the course of three days. President Trump’s defense team used less than half of the 24 hours they were given.

Democrats urged the Senate to allow a fair trial by voting to hear from witnesses like John Bolton and Mick Mulvaney. The defense team argued the impeachment trial should end quickly without additional witnesses. President Trump’s team was up against a new twist that surfaced over the weekend: An unpublished draft of Bolton’s book containing new allegations about the military aid that was withheld from Ukraine. In the draft, Bolton says President Trump tied wanted to withhold the aid until Ukraine helped with investigations into Joe Biden.

Since those allegations came out, some Senate Republicans have said they may break rank and vote with Democrats to call new witnesses to testify. If all Democrats vote to call witnesses, at least four Republicans would need to join them for it to actually happen.

The debate and vote on witnesses are expected to happen Friday.

Nexstar is bringing you complete coverage of President Trump’s impeachment trial. Our coverage continues at 12:50 p.m. ET on Wednesday with Evan Donovan, Masha Saeidi and Washington correspondent Joe Khalil.

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