Schumer hails McConnell's concessions on trial rules but says witnesses is bigger issue

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerMcConnell accuses Democrats of sowing division by 'downplaying progress' on election security Warren, Schumer introduce plan for next president to cancel ,000 in student debt Schumer lashes out at Trump over 'blue states' remark: 'What a disgrace' MORE (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday hailed two concessions Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell focuses on confirming judicial nominees with COVID-19 talks stalled McConnell accuses Democrats of sowing division by 'downplaying progress' on election security Warren, Schumer introduce plan for next president to cancel ,000 in student debt MORE (R-Ky.) made on the resolution setting the rules for President TrumpDonald John TrumpHR McMaster says president's policy to withdraw troops from Afghanistan is 'unwise' Cast of 'Parks and Rec' reunite for virtual town hall to address Wisconsin voters Biden says Trump should step down over coronavirus response MORE’s impeachment trial, arguing it shows the GOP leader is feeling political heat. 

“The public is understanding how unfair Senator McConnell’s trial rules are and Republican Senators are beginning to tell him to change them. The real test will be if they pressure Senator McConnell to allow witnesses and documents,” Schumer said in a statement.

Separately, Schumer told reporters, “The pressure that we have put on them and on Republican senators has gotten them to change.” 

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McConnell made two last-minute changes to the draft of the organizing resolution he circulated Monday evening, which Schumer had slammed before the trial as “nothing short of a national disgrace.”

The GOP leader agreed to give House prosecutors more time to make their opening arguments — three days instead of two — and added language to allow evidence compiled in the House impeachment inquiry to be automatically submitted into the Senate’s trial record.

He made them after receiving pushback from moderate Republicans, including Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsThe Hill's Campaign Report: Biden asks if public can trust vaccine from Trump ahead of Election Day | Oklahoma health officials raised red flags before Trump rally Gideon leads Collins by 12 points in Maine Senate race: poll Senate leaders quash talk of rank-and-file COVID-19 deal MORE (Maine) and Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanRomney undecided on authorizing subpoenas for GOP Obama-era probes Congress needs to prioritize government digital service delivery House passes B bill to boost Postal Service MORE (Ohio), at a lunch meeting Tuesday afternoon.

“Senator Collins and others raised concerns about the 24 hours of opening statements in 2 days and the admission of the House transcript in the record,” Annie Clark, a spokeswoman for Collins, said. 

“Her position has been that the trial should follow the Clinton model as much as possible. She thinks these changes are a significant improvement,” Clark added.