Senate braces for trial as impeachment gets underway
With much of the week devoted to the pomp and circumstance of the articles of impeachment, the impeachment trial against President Donald J. Trump is now in the hands of the Senate. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi kicked off the proceedings Wednesday by naming her team of seven impeachment managers including Reps. Jerry Nadler of New York and Adam Schiff of California -- all with a strong background boasting experience as litigators and what she dubbed "comfort in the courtroom -- an asset Democrats hope to emphasize in their case against Mr. Trump
"The emphasis is on litigators. The emphasis is on comfort level in the courtroom,". "The emphasis is on making the strongest case to protect our Constitution."
While managers will serve as prosecutors in the Senate trial, they may also respond to arguments presented by the president's defense team and answer written questions from senators.
Meanwhile, the Trump White House is preparing for a what they predict to be a speedy process, arming their own defense team with a roster of former litigators themselves, including former independent counsel Ken Starr, most known for his work during the Clinton impeachment trial, and frequent cable news Trump defender Alan Dershowitz.
Mr. Trump himself had remained largely out of the fray when it came to the impeachment process on Capitol Hill this week, but broke his silence in an Oval Office meeting Thursday, once again decrying the probe as a "hoax."
"I think it should go very quickly, it's a hoax, everybody knows that. It's a complete hoax," he said.
As the articles were formally delivered to the Senate and Chief Justice John Roberts sworn-in to oversee the impeachment proceedings, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell hailed that the probe had finally made it under his purview.
"The House's hour is over. The Senate's time is at hand. It's time for this proud body to honor our founding purpose," McConnell announced on the floor of the Senate.
Trade wins for Trump
Amid a deeply political process, members of Congress managed come together in a moment of bipartisanship and deliver on one of Mr. Trump's key 2016 campaign promises --- pushing through the revamped NAFTA deal dubbed USMCA, or the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement in a 89-10 vote on Thursday,
The deal with has yet to be signed by Mr. Trump, hands the president a legislative victory just before the Senate began pre-trial proceedings for his upcoming impeachment trial. The deal includes provisions to tighten rules for making and selling cars, improve access to markets for farmers, mandate inspections of factories for labor violations and establish new digital trade rules.
The vote came just one day after another trade win for the administration as the president and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He formally signed the long-awaited Phase One trade pact after months of back and forth negotiations and the exchanging of tit-for-tat tariffs between the two nations.
"Face the Nation" Guest Lineup:
- Former National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn
- Represenative Jerry Nadler, Judiciary Committee Chairman, @RepJerryNadler
- Senator John Cornyn, @JohnCornyn
- Susan Page ,Washington Bureau Chief, USA Today @SusanPage
- Gerald Seib Executive Washington Editor, Wall Street Journal @GeraldFSeib
- Ed O'Keefe, CBS News Political Correspondent, @edokeefe
- Weijia Jiang, CBS News White House Correspondent, @weijia
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