Trump impeachment trial day 12: All the latest updates

2020-02-03 19:00
US President Donald Trump speaks during a press conference at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. (AFP)

US President Donald Trump speaks during a press conference at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. (AFP)

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The impeachment trial of US President  Donald Trump enters its 12th day on Monday, following a Senate vote that rejected calling new witnesses, and all but assures an acquittal for the president. 

The House managers and Trump's defence team will present up to four hours of closing argument on Monday. The final vote on acquitting or convicting the president is scheduled for Wednesday. 

More: 

House managers, who act as prosecutors, had faced an uphill battle from the start, with a two-thirds Senate vote needed to remove Trump from office. Republicans have 53 seats in the 100-member chamber. Democrats had hoped that new witnesses and evidence - particularly in light of reported revelations in an unpublished book by former National Security Advisor John Bolton - might have changed the dynamic in the partisan proceedings. 

As the trial begins its 12th day, here are all the latest updates as of Monday, February 3:

Top Democratic presidential candidates on Capitol Hill on day of Iowa Caucus

Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar will all be in Washington, DC, for at least part of the day before the Iowa caucus begins on Monday night. 

"I'm starting my day heading to the Senate floor for the impeachment trial. I have a job to do—a constitutional duty. And I think Iowans understand that experience matters. Being in the arena matters. Fighting for the truth matters," Klobuchar said on Twitter. 

What happens next? 

The House managers and Trump's defence on Monday will present up to four hours of closing arguments.

The trial will then be recessed and the Senate will hold a regular session to hear speeches from senators, who will explain why they are voting to acquit or convict Trump. Chief Justice John Roberts will not be present for this session.

On Tuesday, speeches by senators will continue. That night, Trump is scheduled to deliver his annual State of the Union address to both chambers of the US Congress at 21:00 local time (02:00 GMT).

On Wednesday, the trial will resume with a final vote expected on the acquittal or conviction of President Trump by 16:00 (21:00 GMT). A super majority, 67 senators, would need to vote in favour of convicting the president - which is considered extremely unlikely. 

What happened on Friday?

After a day of debate, the Senate voted 51-49 to block allowing more evidence from being introduced in the trial. Two Republicans, Senators Susan Collins and Mitt Romney, broke from party ranks and voted to be able to subpoena new witnesses and documents.

During the debate that preceded the vote, Democratic House managers argued that new evidence had emerged since the House concluded their inquiry. That, coupled with the White House's categorical denial to participate in the investigation, required that new evidence be introduced, they said.  

Trump's defence team, meanwhile, argued that allowing new evidence would tie up the Senate for weeks and blamed the House Democrats for rushing their investigation. Lawyers for Trump, in light of a revelation recounted in former National Security Advisor John Bolton's unpublished book, also argued that even if the president had tied aid to Ukraine to politically motivated investigations, it would not constitute an impeachable offence.

Read more about what happened on Friday here

Who are the House Managers?

Seven House managers have presented the case for removing the president from office over 12 days of the trial. 

 Who is on the president's defence team? 

Read more about the key players who have shaped the trial here

Read more on:    donald trump  |  us
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