DemDaily: Defense Closes in Chambers and On Air. Trial Day Seven

January 29, 2020

The seventh day of the impeachment trial of President Donald J. Trump brought to a close the prosecution and defense phase of the historic trial.

Both the House Managers and the President's lawyers argued their case over three days each.
Senators will then have up to 16 hours Wednesday and Thursday to submit questions in writing to both sides, to be read out loud by Chief Justice John Roberts. A vote on whether to call witnesses and subpoena further documents is expected Friday.

Day Seven
President Trump's attorneys wrapped up their final oral arguments Tuesday at 3pm, concluding their defense after just two hours on the floor, and ending with a plea by lead counsel Pat Cipollone to reject the articles of impeachment. "It is time to end this here and now."

Bolton's Book is scheduled for a March release (NBC News stream)

The defense's final day was overshadowed by the release Sunday of transcripts of former National Security Advisor John Bolton's unpublished book that confirm, firsthand, Trump's abuse of his power in the Ukraine scheme.

Subsequent excerpts released Monday also reveal conversations and meetings Bolton had with senior administration officials that directly tie them to the President's quid-pro-quo demand that Ukraine announce investigations of political opponent Joe Biden and his son Hunter.

Included are those with US Attorney General Bill Barr, whom Bolton has known for decades, in which they discussed shared concerns that the President was intervening in Justice Department matters to grant "personal favors" for autocratic leaders in China and Turkey.

The revelations in Bolton's book, titled, "The Room Where It Happened," have increased calls for him and other witnesses to testify, including by some of the moderate Republican members needed to vote in favor of subpoenas.

Immediately following the close of the trial, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) held a closed-door strategy session with fellow GOP Senators, emerging with the acknowledgement that they didn't have the votes at present to block a call for witnesses and avoid a prolonged trial. McConnell had hoped for a speedy trial and acquittal, most significantly before Trump's State of the Union address next Tuesday, February 4th.

Biden Attack Ad playing in Iowa (Click)

Next week also marks the beginning of the presidential primaries, with the first-in-the-nation Iowa caucus on Monday, February 3rd.

Yesterday, Senator Rick Scott (R-FLA), who is reportedly considering a presidential run in 2024, released an ad attacking former Vice President Joe Biden, repeating allegations made by Republicans in the impeachment trial.

The ad is airing in Iowa ahead of the critical first test of voters for the Democratic candidates.

Scott, an ardent Trump ally, opens the ad by saying as "one of the jurors in the US Senate," he wants to "thank the Democrats for badly botching this impeachment charade, and for spending so much time in a cover up for Joe Biden. The real story here is the corruption Joe Biden got away with."

Next Up
The Question and Answer phase of the trial begins today, Wednesday, January 29th, at 1:00pm ET.

DemList will keep you informed.


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Kimberly Scott

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Sources: New York Times, CNN, The Hill

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