Democrats: McConnell impeachment trial rules a 'cover-up,' 'national disgrace'

Senate Democrats slammed Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump's election delay red herring On The Money: Unemployment debate sparks GOP divisions | Pandemic reveals flaws of unemployment insurance programs | Survey finds nearly one-third of rehired workers laid off again OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Trump signs major conservation bill into law | Senate votes to confirm Energy's No. 2 official | Trump Jr. expresses opposition to Pebble Mine project MORE (R-Ky.) on Monday night over his proposed rules for President TrumpDonald John TrumpMark Kelly clinches Democratic Senate nod in Arizona Trump camp considering White House South Lawn for convention speech: reports Longtime Rep. Lacy Clay defeated in Missouri Democratic primary MORE's impeachment trial, accusing the GOP leader of a "cover-up." 
 
The rules would condense the total number of days allowed for opening arguments compared to the Clinton trial. Though House managers and Trump's team would both get 24 hours, the same as in 1999, they would have to use that time within two days per side. 
 
 
“After reading his resolution, it’s clear Senator McConnell is hell-bent on making it much more difficult to get witnesses and documents and intent on rushing the trial through," Schumer said in a statement.  
 
Schumer added that the rules would turn the looming Senate trial into a "cover-up," and warned that any senator who supports it "will be voting to hide information and evidence from the American people." 
 
McConnell unveiled the text of his resolution on Monday night. In addition to shortening the total number of days both sides get for opening arguments, the resolution does not allow evidence from the House impeachment inquiry to be entered into the Senate trial record until after the question of additional witnesses and documents receives consideration.

Instead, the McConnell resolution includes a vote after opening arguments and questions from senators on “whether it shall be in order to consider and debate under the impeachment rules any motion to subpoena witnesses or documents."

"Let’s be 100% clear - the only reason to restrict the impeachment managers to 24 hours over 2 days is to make sure the evidence is presented in the dead of the night, when no one is watching. It’s not about finding the truth or honoring our duty. It’s all about the coverup," Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyDemocrats want Biden to debate Trump despite risks Connecticut senators call for Subway to ban open carry of firearms Democrats optimistic about chances of winning Senate MORE (D-Conn.) tweeted. 

 
He added that "these are not the Clinton rules. They are the McConnell rules, designed around a central goal of whitewashing the President’s corruption." 
 

A Senate GOP leadership aide noted that if a majority of the Senate rejects calling witnesses, then "no party or Senator will be permitted to move to subpoena any witness or documents." If a simple majority votes to call witnesses then it would set up a process where both sides can make motions to call witnesses and the Senate would vote on them. 

"These guys REALLY don’t want documents and witnesses and we should stop pretending that we don’t know why," Sen. Brian SchatzBrian Emanuel SchatzLobbying world Overnight Defense: House passes defense bill that Trump threatened to veto | Esper voices concerns about officers wearing military garb Senate rejects broad restrictions on transfers of military-grade equipment to police MORE (D-Hawaii) said in a tweet. 
 
 
Schumer vowed that Democrats will force votes on the floor on Tuesday to "address the many flaws in this deeply unfair proposal and to subpoena the witnesses and documents we have requested.”
 
 
McConnell is likely to have the 51 votes to block Democrats from changing the rules resolution on the floor on Tuesday, and ultimately enact it over their objections. 
 
Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisMichelle Obama supporters urge Biden to pick former first lady as running mate Michelle Obama wishes Barack a happy birthday: 'My favorite guy' Harris endorses Democrat in tight California House race MORE (D-Calif.) warned that senators who oppose witnesses will be held "accountable for their votes tomorrow."

"It’s clear McConnell and Trump want to ignore sworn evidence. And they don’t want firsthand witnesses to Trump’s misconduct," she tweeted.
 

Sen. Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsThe Global Fragility Act provides the tools to address long-term impacts of COVID Coronavirus Report: The Hill's Steve Clemons interviews Thomas Isett Coronavirus Report: The Hill's Steve Clemons interviews Dr. Kate Broderick MORE (D-Del.) said the rules look "more like a cover up than a fair trial."  

"His proposed rules would rush the presentation of the case, erect barriers to witnesses, and even delay admission of evidence already in the record," he said in a statement. "I hope some of my Republican colleagues will see how unfair this proposal is and vote with Democrats tomorrow to revise these unworkable rules."