alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.

Mitch McConnell’s latest bid to save Trump is about to blow up in his GOP colleagues' faces: report

Mitch McConnell’s latest bid to save Trump is about to blow up in his GOP colleagues' faces: report
Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

In a commentary for MSNBC, contributor Steve Benen echoed former Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake (R) who made the case that history will not look kindly upon Republican senators who are planning to give Donald Trump a pass in his impeachment trial, saying they are all on trial now.


With multiple Republican senators facing uphill battles for re-election in 2020 with Trump likely heading the ticket, the MSNBC contributor claimed that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has made their task even harder with the impeachment trial rules he hopes to impose on the Senate.

As NBC notes, “Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., will allot each side a total of 24 hours to present their arguments in President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, but the time must be confined to two working days, according to the text of his organizing resolution, which NBC News obtained Monday. The proposal also suggests that none of the evidence collected as part of the House’s impeachment inquiry will be admitted automatically. Instead, according to the text, the Senate will vote later on whether to admit any documents.”

“Not to put too fine a point on this, but it appears the fix is in – or at least it will be, if McConnell’s plan is implemented,” Benen explained. “The timing of the announcement was itself notable: the Senate GOP leadership team had a month to present a proposed set of rules for the presidential impeachment trial, but McConnell waited until last night to unveil them, narrowing the window for members to evaluate the blueprint and craft possible amendments.”

Referring to Flake’s comment directed at his former colleagues (“President Trump is on trial. But in a very real sense, so are you. And so is the political party to which we belong.”) Benen writes, “McConnell’s blueprint includes no guarantees of witness testimony, no guarantees that senators will be able to consider new evidence, and no guarantees that the trial will even allow the evidence collected through the House impeachment investigation to be admitted in the Senate proceedings.”

“To be sure, that may yet change. There will be votes, for example, on proposed amendments to the Senate majority leader’s proposed game plan. What’s more, senators will have opportunities once the trial is underway to vote on introducing information, including witness testimony, and a handful of Republicans have expressed a willingness to do so,” he added, before bluntly noting, “But that’s not the blueprint the GOP leadership has in mind.”

You can read the whole opinion piece here.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

Close