Sen. Kennedy defends McConnell for working with president during impeachment trial

Sen. Kennedy defends McConnell for working with president during impeachment trial
© Greg Nash

Sen. John KennedyJohn Neely KennedyMORE (R-La.) defended Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellAn August ultimatum: No recess until redistricting reform is done After police rip Trump for Jan. 6, McCarthy again blames Pelosi The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - US gymnast wins all-around gold as Simone Biles cheers from the stands MORE (R-Ky.) for working with President TrumpDonald TrumpMyPillow CEO to pull ads from Fox News Haaland, Native American leaders press for Indigenous land protections Simone Biles, Vince Lombardi and the courage to walk away MORE as he prepares for the impeachment trial in the Senate. 

The Louisiana senator reacted to Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiBill would honor Ginsburg, O'Connor with statues at Capitol The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - US gymnast wins all-around gold as Simone Biles cheers from the stands The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - A huge win for Biden, centrist senators MORE’s (R-Alaska) comment that she was “disturbed” by McConnell’s remark that he would be in “total coordination” with the White House throughout the impeachment trial.

“I think Sen. McConnell is entitled to his opinion and his approach. So is Sen. Murkowski. So is Sen. Schumer,” he told CNN’s “State of the Union,” referring to Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerAn August ultimatum: No recess until redistricting reform is done Biden to meet with 11 Democratic lawmakers on DACA: report Schumer's moment to transform transit and deepen democracy MORE (D-N.Y.).

Kennedy added that the Constitution, the rules in the Senate and past impeachments show that “there’s virtually no substantive rules” when it comes to impeachment trials.

“I can only speak for me,” he said. “I’m going to keep an open mind. I’m going to be fair to both sides.”

The Louisiana Republican called the House impeachment proceedings “unnecessarily unfair” and said he hopes the Senate trial provides a "level playing field" 

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The House impeached the president on two articles after a months-long inquiry. The Senate will try Trump, but its Republican majority is unlikely to vote to remove him.

McConnell has said he does not intend to be impartial during the trial, which has sparked concerns among Senate Democrats about fairness. The Senate majority leader has also rejected Democrats' push for more witnesses and documents.