Impeachment Trial: Democrats Detail Trump-Ukraine Timeline In Opening Arguments
House Democrats presented an exhaustive account of President Trump's efforts to pressure Ukraine on the second day of the Senate impeachment trial, walking senators through a detailed timeline to argue the president abused his power and should be removed from office.
Led by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, the seven impeachment managers presented a mountain of evidence collected in the House's months-long investigation into the president's dealings with Ukraine. They punctuated their presentations with video clips and excerpts of hours of public testimony in the House from officials who witnessed many of the events in question, as well as the president's own words.
In a lengthy speech to kick off the proceedings, Schiff accused the president of orchestrating a "corrupt scheme" by using military aid to Ukraine and a coveted White House visit as leverage to pressure the Ukrainian president to pursue investigations into his political rivals, including the Bidens.
"President Trump solicited foreign interference in our democratic elections, abusing the power of his office to seek help from abroad to improve his reelection prospects at home," Schiff said. "When he was caught, he used the powers of that office to obstruct the investigation into his own misconduct."
As senators drifted in and out of the chamber over the course of eight hours, he urged them to consider what kind of precedent they would set if they allow Mr. Trump to remain in office, framing impeachment as the only way to deter future presidents from engaging in similar behavior.
"If this conduct is not impeachable, then nothing is," Schiff said.
The Senate will reconvene at 1 p.m. for the second of three days of opening arguments by the House managers.
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