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Trump: Impeachment timing intended to hurt Sanders

President TrumpDonald TrumpLil Wayne gets 11th hour Trump pardon Trump grants clemency to more than 100 people, including Bannon Trump expected to pardon Bannon: reports MORE on Friday accused Democrats of deliberately diminishing Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Memo: Trump leaves changed nation in his wake Cori Bush dismisses concerns of being 'co-opted' by establishment The Memo: Biden prepares for sea of challenges MORE’s (I-Vt.) chances of winning the party's presidential nomination by keeping him off the campaign trail to serve as a juror in the Senate impeachment trial.

The president in a pair of tweets sought to exploit potential frustration among Democrats by echoing a theory among some lawmakers that Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiThe Memo: Trump leaves changed nation in his wake New York court worker arrested, accused of threats related to inauguration GOP Rep Marjorie Taylor Greene referred to Parkland school shooting as 'false flag' event on Facebook MORE (D-Calif.) was aiding the 2020 candidacy of former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump grants clemency to more than 100 people, including Bannon Scalise bringing Donna Brazile as guest to Biden inauguration Sidney Powell withdraws 'kraken' lawsuit in Georgia MORE by timing impeachment votes to keep Sanders and other candidates in Washington as the Iowa caucuses approach.

"They are rigging the election again against Bernie Sanders, just like last time, only even more obviously," Trump tweeted. "They are bringing him out of so important Iowa in order that, as a Senator, he sit through the Impeachment Hoax Trial."

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"Crazy Nancy thereby gives the strong edge to Sleepy Joe Biden, and Bernie is shut out again," he continued.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyHere's how presidents move into the White House in just hours on Inauguration Day Three more major companies suspend PAC donations after Capitol riots Pence, other GOP officials expected to skip Trump send-off MORE (R-Calif.) and other lawmakers have suggested that Pelosi is hindering senators running for president by withholding impeachment articles from the Senate until earlier this week, during a critical stretch before the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary.

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Sanders and Democratic Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenBiden pick for Pentagon cruises through confirmation hearing Senate Democrats call on Biden to immediately invoke Defense Production Act Biden consumer bureau pick could take over agency on Inauguration Day MORE (Mass.), Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharSenate Democrats call on Biden to immediately invoke Defense Production Act Senate Democrats make democracy reform first bill of new majority Google completes Fitbit acquisition MORE (Minn.) and Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetTop Democrat pushes for tying unemployment insurance to economic conditions 50-50 Senate opens the door to solutions outlasting Trump's moment of violence Build trust in vaccines by investing in community workers MORE (Colo.) are all running for president but will be jurors in the impeachment trial, which will begin in earnest on Tuesday.

Pelosi has repeatedly denied politics were a factor when considering impeachment matters, and she and other Democrats have said they held onto the articles to secure a more fair trial in the Senate.

Sanders, who is at or near the top of most polls in the Democratic primary, conceded Thursday he is worried about losing valuable time on the campaign trail while he sits through an impeachment trial that could last for weeks.

“I would rather be in Iowa today. There’s a caucus there in 2 1/2 weeks. I’d rather be in New Hampshire and Nevada and so forth. But I swore a constitutional oath as a United States senator to do my job and I’m here to do my job,” he said.

The Iowa caucuses are scheduled for Feb. 3. The New Hampshire primary is eight days later, on Feb. 11.