War powers measure has majority support in US Senate: Democrats

Speaker of the US House Nancy Pelosi, joined by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff leaves a lengthy closed-door meeting with the Democratic Caucus at the Capitol in Washington

The House speaker was expected to also announce on Tuesday the lawmakers who will prosecute Donald Trump in the Senate impeachment trial following her meeting with the caucus earlier in the morning.

In a joint statement, Schiff, Nadler, House Oversight Committee Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel (D-NY) noted on Tuesday that the addition of materials obtained from Parnas and the other classified evidence demonstrates "there is more evidence relevant to the President's scheme, but they have been concealed by the President himself".

Senate rules dating to 1886, Tribe said, give the upper chamber of Congress "no jurisdiction to begin its impeachment trial until the articles have been submitted by the House to the Senate".

"We now have the 51 votes that we need for the version that's the bipartisan version", said Democratic Senator Tim Kaine, who introduced the measure meant to force Trump to seek authority from Congress if military hostilities with Iran last for more than 30 days. The caucus chose to vote Wednesday to finally hand over the two articles.

The Speaker said the House will vote to transmit the charges and name the House managers for the case.

Senators Sanders of Vermont, Warren of MA and Klobuchar of Minnesota all made the stage for January's primary debate - but the three candidates could face being taken off the campaign trail as the impeachment trial moves to their chamber this week.

McConnell ... simply refused to negotiate or compromise, insisting that some variant of the rules that governed the [Bill] Clinton impeachment trial would be followed - notwithstanding the crucial ambiguities in that position, the obvious differences in the Clinton and Trump situations, and other such factors.

The action will launch the Senate proceeding, only the third presidential impeachment trial in United States history, a dramatic endeavor coming amid the backdrop of a politically divided nation and an election year.

"The emphasis is making the strongest possible case to protect and defend our Constitution, to seek the truth for the American people", Pelosi told a news conference.


Democrats have been pushing Republicans, who have the majority in the Senate, to consider new testimony, arguing that fresh information has emerged during Pelosi's monthlong delay in transmitting the charges. Despite what you may hear from our colleagues on the other side of the aisle, not to mention those in the media who carry their water, this trial will be open and evenhanded. Republicans and Democrats are likely to clash over the issue of whether to call new witnesses.

The White House is steeling itself for a trial that could present damaging evidence against the USA leader on national television.

'I might not. Or I might, ' the senator, who is retiring at the end of the year, said. McConnell is hesitant to call new witnesses who would prolong the trial. They are considering whether to allow a vote on such a motion to dismiss and another to subpoena testimony from new witnesses. Rand Paul of Kentucky warned that if witnesses are allowed, defence witnesses could also be called.

'I'm not going to be voting for witnesses prior to the opening arguments. But I presume I'll be voting for that after, ' another moderate Republican, Senator Mitt Romney, told reporters.

Romney has publicly feuded with Trump in the past.

The White House is also preparing its defense of Trump with White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and Trump's personal lawyer Jay Sekulow expected to hold speaking roles in the trial.

Trump has consistently painted the charges against him as part of a witch-hunt and again took to Twitter on Tuesday evening to decry his impeachment in the House as "the most lopsided & unfair basement hearing in the history of Congress!"

"Do these sound like leaders who really believe we are in a constitutional crisis, one that requires the ultimate remedy?"

Both Collins and Romney claim they will not vote to immediately dismiss the trial - and since Republicans have 53 seats and 51 are required to approve motions, the resolution will not pass.

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