WASHINGTON, D.C. (WAFB) - The Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump is now underway.
On Tuesday, Jan. 21, senators spent more than 12 hours debating the rules of the trial. The trial continues Wednesday.
U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, MD (R-La.) released the following thoughts about the trial thus far:
“It appears to me it is clearly partisan. It was partisan on the House side; that has carried over. The House has their arguments. They failed to pursue the documents they needed through the court system, and now they complain that they had to do so. We’ll see. I’m listening to both sides with an open mind."
“We spent about 12 hours talking over something that we’re going to talk over once more in four days. We’re going by the same rules agreed by 100 senators, unanimously, under President Clinton’s trial. Democrats are a little bit upset about that. For whatever reason, they want to change those rules from those we had 21 years ago. With that said, we’ll go forward and spend as much time as needed. We were here until 2 a.m."
“It’s so frustrating. There’s opportunity cost, obviously. If you’re spending time doing this, then you’re not working to lower the cost of insulin, as one example. In Louisiana, we would like more effort to be made on National Flood Insurance Program, on coastal restoration. As a member of the Veterans Affairs Committee, I would like to be working on mental health issues for veterans. We lose that opportunity because nothing else happens during this time period. But the House knew that. They still sent the articles over. We’ll deal with it."
“We will see after the initial evidence is presented. They [House managers] claim the evidence they have now is ‘overwhelming.’ If that’s the case, then, obviously, it’s overwhelming, and they’ll be able to make their case without anything additional. We’ll have a vote in four or five days on whether to have more documents or witnesses."
“People ask whether the process can be fair at all. Obviously, you have people running for president on the Democratic ticket who will be casting a vote. Presumably they’ll all vote to get rid of the president since they’re running to get rid of the president. With that said, I do think there will be a thorough vetting of the information, and that the American people can judge and make up their mind if not now, they can make up their mind at the ballot box in November."