Trump seizes on viral clip of Nadler giving final answer over Schiff
President Trump on Friday seized on a viral clip of House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), who appeared to catch impeachment manager colleague Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) by surprise when he stepped to the microphone to deliver a final answer to senators in the Senate impeachment trial.
Rep. Jerry Nadler got up to get the last word in for the night. Rep. Adam Schiff, the lead impeachment manager, got up and tried to get Nadler’s attention: “Jerry. Jerry. Jerry.” pic.twitter.com/M5K2OBXoK1
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) January 31, 2020
“Jerry, Jerry, Jerry,” Schiff could be heard saying as Nadler quickly walked past him to deliver the final answer from House impeachment managers for the night.
The moment was catnip for the president, who has repeatedly gone after Schiff and Democrats during his impeachment trial.
“Nadler ripped final argument away from Schiff, thinks Shifty did a terrible job. They are fighting big time!” Trump tweeted as footage of the moment made its way around social media on Friday morning.
The moment came late Thursday at the end of a 16-hour period where senators posed questions to House managers and the president’s defense team. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), who is running for president, asked a final question giving House managers the opportunity to “provide any other comments the senate would benefit from hearing before we adjourn for the evening.”
Nadler is seen getting up from his seat and making his way to the microphone to give the closing statement, appearing to catch Schiff off guard.
Members of the president’s legal team and Senate staff visible on camera can be seen smiling as the scene unfolded.
Spokespeople for Schiff and Nadler did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Nadler used the final remarks to reiterate the need for witnesses and dismiss Trump’s defense as a series of distractions meant to divert attention from the question of whether the president abused his power in pressuring Ukraine to investigate his political rivals.
“The House managers have proved that question beyond any doubt,” he said.
Schiff, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, led the House impeachment inquiry before it moved to a full vote, and he has served as the lead House manager throughout the trial, doing the bulk of the speaking in laying out the case against the president.
Schiff delivered closing remarks during each of the three days of opening arguments for the House managers, making it even more surprising that Nadler would have the final word on Thursday.
Nadler’s performance during the trial has irked Republican senators at times, with a few expressing indignation at his suggestion last week that the Senate would be complicit in a cover-up if they do not call witnesses.
Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said late Thursday he would not vote in favor of subpoenaing witnesses and additional documents, making it increasingly likely the trial will move to an acquittal vote later Friday.
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