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

Sen. Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenImpeachment trial begins with furor over rules Fox's Bill Hemmer sees sizable viewer increase for debut in Shep Smith's former time slot Roberts under pressure from both sides in witness fight MORE (D-Md.) questioned whether Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump admin releases trove of documents on Ukrainian military aid The Hill's Morning Report - Trump trial begins with clashes, concessions What to watch for on Day 2 of Senate impeachment trial MORE (R-Ky.) will “try to rig” the impeachment trial by teaming up with President TrumpDonald John TrumpRouhani says Iran will never seek nuclear weapons Trump downplays seriousness of injuries in Iran attack after US soldiers treated for concussions Trump says Bloomberg is 'wasting his money' on 2020 campaign 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 PelosiOvernight Health Care: Justices won't fast-track ObamaCare case before election | New virus spreads from China to US | Collins challenger picks up Planned Parenthood endorsement Why Senate Republicans should eagerly call witnesses to testify Trump health chief: 'Not a need' for ObamaCare replacement plan right now 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 SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerDemocratic senator blasts 'draconian' press restrictions during impeachment trial Feds seek 25-year sentence for Coast Guard officer accused of targeting lawmakers, justices Clinton: McConnell's rules like 'head juror colluding with the defendant to cover up a crime' 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.