Senate Democrat on impeachment trial: 'If you have a rigged trial there's no exoneration in acquittal'

Sen. Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenGOP tries to take filibuster pressure off Manchin, Sinema Overnight Energy & Environment — Biden set to restore national monuments rolled back by Trump Markey: Senate must pass reconciliation package before global climate summit MORE (D-Md.) questioned whether Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHoyer signals House vote on bill to 'remove' debt limit threat Biden signs bill to raise debt ceiling On The Money — Progressives play hard ball on Biden budget plan MORE (R-Ky.) will “try to rig” the impeachment trial by teaming up with President TrumpDonald TrumpRobert Gates says 'extreme polarization' is the greatest threat to US democracy Cassidy says he won't vote for Trump if he runs in 2024 Schiff says holding Bannon in criminal contempt 'a way of getting people's attention' MORE.

Van Hollen told Jon Karl on ABC’s “This Week” that Senate Democrats are pushing for a “fair trial” where they are permitted to call witnesses and obtain necessary documents. 

"Is Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, going to try to rig this trial, working in lockstep with the president and his lawyers? Or is he going to allow a fair trial?" Van Hollen asked.

"We keep hearing President Trump say he's going to be exonerated," he added. "Look, if you have a rigged trial there's no exoneration in acquittal."

Van Hollen said it was “too early” to tell how many Republicans will support more witnesses and documents in the trial but added that those who vote against it will be “complicit in a cover-up.”

The senator said he believes Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSen. Ron Johnson hoping for Democratic 'gridlock' on reconciliation package Virginia race looms as dark cloud over Biden's agenda  Biden struggles to rein in Saudi Arabia amid human rights concerns MORE (D-Calif.) will send over the articles of impeachment leading to a trial. 

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Pelosi has been withholding the articles from the Senate until the leaders determine the guidelines for the trial. In the meantime, Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden's Supreme Court commission ends not with a bang but a whimper Hispanic organizations call for Latino climate justice in reconciliation Senate to vote next week on Freedom to Vote Act MORE (D-N.Y.) has been pushing McConnell to allow witnesses and documents. 

The House voted to impeach Trump on two articles earlier this month, sending the matter to the Senate for trial. The GOP-majority Senate is expected to acquit the president.