/OnPolitics: Trumps defense team took things back to 1998

OnPolitics: Trumps defense team took things back to 1998

You guys! President Trump’s defense team finished their opening arguments early and sent the Senate impeachment trial to the Q&A stage. 

It’s kind of a big deal for those of us who have literally watched every moment of the trial as part of our jobs to help you good people stay informed. So let’s discuss how that happened. 

Trump’s team with receipts from 1998

Pat Cipollone, the White House counsel, closed the defense of President Donald Trump in the Senate trial with a warning that lowering the bar for impeachment and removal from office would set a historic precedent that would leave future presidents vulnerable to a Congress led by a different party.

 Rep. Jerry Nadler, for example, warned against an impeachment of Clinton that would be supported by one party. So far no Republicans have supported Trump’s impeachment in committee or on the House floor.

Be real, you would eat Cheetos too

Throughout the trial, senators have dozed off, passed notes, munched on snacks and sometimes laughed or shaken their heads in disapproval. Here’s some of what else you couldn’t see if you’ve watched the trial on TV.  

  • Senators, including Tom Cotton, R-Ark., Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Pat Toomey, R-Pa., were spotted with the spinners during the trial
  • Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., filled out a crossword puzzle, surreptitiously putting it under a piece of paper on his desk.
  • Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., got up and walked to the back of the chamber, taking off her black heels and taking a deep sigh. When she went back to her desk, she wrapped herself in a red shawl.
  • Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., snacked on a bag of Cheetos in the back row of the chamber one evening last week, quietly crunching as proceedings resumed after a dinner break. 
  • Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, shut his eyes during a presentation by House impeachment managers and was the first spotted by USA TODAY to fall asleep. But he wasn’t the only one. 

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