Schumer to colleagues running for White House: Impeachment comes first

Schumer to colleagues running for White House: Impeachment comes first
© Greg Nash

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSanders defends vote against USMCA: 'Not a single damn mention' of climate change Schumer votes against USMCA, citing climate implications Senators are politicians, not jurors — they should act like it MORE (D-N.Y.) says Democratic colleagues running for president, such as Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti rips Sanders over handling of feud with Warren On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans MORE (D-Mass.) and Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti rips Sanders over handling of feud with Warren On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans MORE (I-Vt.), should prioritize the Senate impeachment trial over campaigning ahead of the Iowa caucuses.

The trial could tie up senators on the Senate floor for the entire month of January, right before the first contest of the Democratic primary calendar scheduled in Iowa for Feb. 3.

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With the possibility of close votes on procedural questions such as what witnesses should be called to the Senate floor, Schumer says colleagues should make the trial their first priority, even if it might tread on their campaign plans.

“This has to come first. This is one of the most solemn decisions that anyone has to make and I’ve told all members of my caucus that scheduling concerns are secondary to doing this the right way,” Schumer told reporters Tuesday.

A Senate trial is expected to begin after New Year’s Day but Schumer and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDems plan marathon prep for Senate trial, wary of Trump trying to 'game' the process Senate GOP mulls speeding up Trump impeachment trial Republicans will pay on Election Day for politicizing Trump's impeachment MORE (R-Ky.) still have to sit down to negotiate a resolution to set the rules and parameters of the trial.

In addition to Sanders and Warren, who are at the top of polls along with former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hillicon Valley: Biden calls for revoking tech legal shield | DHS chief 'fully expects' Russia to try to interfere in 2020 | Smaller companies testify against Big Tech 'monopoly power' Hill.TV's Krystal Ball on Sanders-Warren feud: 'Don't play to the pundits, play to voters' MORE, Sens. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans Poll: Sanders holds 5-point lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire MORE (D-Minn.), Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerDNC announces new criteria for New Hampshire debate The Hill's Campaign Report: Sanders, Warren feud rattles Democrats The Hill's Morning Report — President Trump on trial MORE (D-N.Y.) and Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans Klobuchar on missing campaigning for impeachment: 'I can do two things at once' MORE (D-Colo.) are also running for the party’s presidential nomination.

A Senate trial would put a major crimp in their schedule.

Senate rules generally call for the chamber to be in session six days a week to hear the case presented by the House impeachment managers and the defense presented by President TrumpDonald John TrumpNational Archives says it altered Trump signs, other messages in Women's March photo Dems plan marathon prep for Senate trial, wary of Trump trying to 'game' the process Democratic lawmaker dismisses GOP lawsuit threat: 'Take your letter and shove it' MORE’s legal team.

During that time, senators are required to sit in their seats and listen to the evidence without speaking. They may submit questions and proposals for motions to the presiding chair, who would be Chief Justice John Roberts.

Schumer said he’s waiting for an invitation from McConnell to discuss next month’s schedule.

“As soon as he’s ready,” Schumer said.