It was almost 2 a.m. on Wednesday morning before the final vote came. The Senate, after nearly 13 hours of debate had defeated every amendment offered by Democrats to add witnesses and documents to the impeachment trial of Donald Trump. The trial grew contentious in the early hours of the morning. NBC News writes:
“The vote came just before 2 a.m. Wednesday after Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., one of the House impeachment managers, suggested that senators were voting for a “cover-up,” which drew sharp responses from the president’s legal counsel.
“Chief Justice John Roberts admonished House managers and Trump’s counsel “in equal terms to remember that they are addressing the world’s greatest deliberative body.”
“I do think those addressing the Senate should remember where they are,” Roberts said.“
Under the rules, House managers and the White House will have 24 hours over three days to present their cases. Only then will there be another debate over the possibility of new witnesses and documents.
At the end of the day (early morning), even though Republicans got the trial they wanted, there is an upside for Democrats. The GOP now owns this, writes Politico’s Playbook:
“Politically, though, there is some upside for Democrats. If you accept the argument that President Donald Trump is likely going to be acquitted, isn’t it better for Democrats to own no part of the trial, so they can call it a sham and beat Republicans over the head with it later this year? They will lose these procedural fights, complain loudly about it and wave the trial in the faces of vulnerable Republicans as an example of the party’s fealty to Trump.“
This post contains analysis and opinion.