Day: January 21, 2020

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For Senators, No Coffee, No Cellphones, No Talking…


The impeachment trial of President Trump exchanged the ceremony of last week’s opening session for a bruising battle over rules on Tuesday, as a somber Capitol Hill adjusted to new restrictions on lawmakers and the press—and buckled down for contentious days and long nights ahead.

“It’s miserable,” said

Sen. Jim Inhofe

(R., Okla.), who sat through the impeachment trial of former President Clinton 21 years ago.

Under rules proposed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, arguments could last late into the night, possibly testing the fortitude of Mr. Inhofe, 85, and four other octogenarian members of the chamber.

“Doesn’t bother me a bit,” said Mr. Inhofe, “if I can stay awake!”

After complaints from Democrats and some Republicans, Mr. McConnell agreed Tuesday morning to spread out arguments by House impeachment managers and the White House defense team over eight-hour days rather than 12-hour days, but the possibility of late-night sessions remains.

Less controversial was the ban on lawmakers bringing their cellphones and iPads inside the chamber, though some senators did keep on their Apple Watches. The senators, who will act as the jury, were admonished to remain silent during the trial “on pain of imprisonment.”

“That’s a tough job for people that like to talk around here,” said

Sen. Mike Braun

(R., Ind.).

Democratic leader Chuck Schumer could be seen briefly whispering to an aide seated next to him, and at one point

Sen. Chuck Grassley

(R., Iowa) asked

Sen. Cory Gardner

(R., Colo.) a question. Mr. Gardner appeared to mouth the words, “one hour,” and held up a finger.

Passing notes is a no-no, too, as are crossword puzzles, snacks or coffee.

The coffee ban was already causing

Sen. Kevin Cramer

(R., N.D.) some anxiety.

“I drink coffee from the minute I wake up until bedtime…It’s the only drug that I use or abuse, with the exception of occasional Ibuprofen,” Mr. Cramer confided. “So my biggest challenge is to drink enough coffee to stay awake, but not drink so much that I, you know, that I’m, ah, uncomfortable in the chamber.” (Senators say they are pretty sure they can leave when necessary to go to the bathroom, but with CSPAN and all eyes in the press gallery trained on them, a discreet exit could prove difficult.)

“Due to my poor seniority, I’m in the back row with a lot of room to maneuver,” said Mr. Braun, whose location puts him mostly out of the live TV shots. “So, that’s one advantage of where I’m sitting.”

Hours before the trial got under way, a heavier security presence than usual made it clear this was no ordinary day. U.S. Capitol Police, out in force, frequently stopped reporters and staffers to check IDs. Areas of the building where journalists typically run free, chasing down senators on the way to votes, were closed off for 15 minutes before Tuesday’s session began and 15 minutes after.

Rep. Adam Schiff and the other House impeachment managers speak to the media in the Capitol Tuesday.


Photo:

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/Newscom/Zuma Press

After going through security to get into the Capitol complex, reporters also had to pass through a metal detector to get into the press gallery balcony overlooking the Senate chamber, where seating was assigned by number.

Lawmakers did their best to steer through the increased hallway traffic.

“First game rule is: nobody takes my shoes off,”

Sen. Lisa Murkowski

(R., Alaska) said after a crush of reporters greeted her in the Senate basement and she had to adjust one of her shoes.

Senators have a lengthy reading list to help them while away the time as they sit quietly in the chamber. House Democrats and the White House filed legal briefings over the weekend—some of them more than 100 pages long. Senators are just starting to dig into those, and a few said they planned to bring printouts into the chamber, where they will have access to them during the trial.

“I’m about 25 pages into it,” said

Sen. Chris Coons

(D., Del.) of the administration’s brief.

Before Chief Justice

John Roberts

arrived to preside on Tuesday afternoon, Senate pages in navy blue jackets put glasses of ice water on each senator’s wooden desk.

Speaking in Davos, Switzerland, President Trump touted recent trade wins and a strong U.S. economy. WSJ’s Gerald F. Seib explains that his remarks were directed to U.S. voters, as well as senators who are kicking off the impeachment trial in Washington. Photo: Jason Alden/Bloomberg

There was no typical bipartisan mingling ahead of the trial, though the two legal teams did make a slight effort to reach across the aisle. House Intelligence Committee Chairman

Adam Schiff

(D., Calif.) shook hands with Pat Cipollone, the lead counsel for the president.

It was clear that Republican senators knew the president’s team well.

Sen. Jim Risch

(R., Idaho) patted Mr. Cipollone on the back, and

Jay Sekulow

and Mr. Cipollone shared a laugh with

Sen. John Cornyn

(R., Texas).

Pam Bondi

and

Sen. Marsha Blackburn

(R., Tenn.) hugged ahead of the trial.

Democratic senators talked to the impeachment managers, especially those like Reps.

Jerrold Nadler

of New York and

Zoe Lofgren

of California who have served in the House for decades.

Most senators carried notebooks or folders. Several thick binders were distributed to Democratic senators. As the trial started, some started scribbling furiously.

Actress Alyssa Milano sat in the front row of the gallery and appeared to be referencing notes. Former Arizona GOP Sen. Jeff Flake, who often spoke against Mr. Trump’s policies, was in the gallery later in the day, sitting by himself. Republican

Rep. Louie Gohmert

of Texas, a vocal Trump ally, entered about an hour into arguments and grabbed a chair at the back.

As Mr. Cipollone gave his closing arguments, some senators didn’t hide their reactions. GOP Sens.

Ben Sasse

of Nebraska and Tim Scott of South Carolina exchanged glances approvingly when the president’s counsel talked about the House Intelligence Committee conducting its investigation behind closed doors.

When Mr. Cipollone said that Mr. Schiff’s Republican colleagues weren’t allowed to take part in the investigation—an inaccurate statement, because GOP members of the Intelligence Committee as well as two other panels were welcome to attend the depositions—Mr. Coons and

Sen. Amy Klobuchar

of Minnesota looked at each other and shook their heads.

Not every senator made it through the debate awake. Mr. Risch dozed, with his face in his hand, while Democrats made their case that the Senate should subpoena documents. A spokeswoman for the senator didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Write to Lindsay Wise at lindsay.wise@wsj.com and Natalie Andrews at Natalie.Andrews@wsj.com

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UPDATE: Antonio Brown Reportedly Facing Felony Battery Charges After Incident At FL Home…


HOLLYWOOD (CBSMiami) – There’s a heavy police presence at Antonio Brown’s residence Tuesday evening, and multiple reports believe it’s linked to a battery on his property.

The Hollywood Police Department told CBS4 News that they are interviewing witnesses and will be releasing information soon.

“The cops have been at this house a lot lately,” said neighbor Kathy Capuano. “Last week the cops were here, something with his baby mama, we’re not really sure.”

According to TMZ, a police source said Brown has been accused of felony battery and burglary. TMZ’s source said it stems from an incident with a driver who works for a moving company.

CBS4’s Hank Tester reports the large moving van departed, followed by a bevvy of police cruisers.

According to ESPN’s Cameron Wolfe, the Hollywood police were investigating Brown for possible battery at his home. Wolfe went on to report that a source told ESPN it’s not believed to be a domestic situation.

“I don’t want my kids to be seeing famous athletes causing trouble, so as a parent that bothers me,” a neighbor said in regards to Tuesday’s incident.

The Hollywood Police Department, which has responded to three incidents involving Brown in the past three months, recently cut ties with Brown following an outburst aimed at officers responding to a domestic dispute.

Brown, who recorded the encounter on his phone and posted it on Instagram, was screaming at Chelsie Kyriss, the mother of three of his children, to get off his property.

Brown could be heard accusing Kyriss, who was there to pick up the kids for school, of trying to steal his Bentley.

Kyriss was allegedly evicted from the house and was only allowed to be there to take the children.

When police arrived, Brown became irate when officers tried to get a good grasp on the situation.

As a result of the profanity-laced tirade, which includes a staggering 14 f-bombs in the first 21 seconds of video, the department said Brown is no longer welcome as a benefactor and volunteer with the PAL youth football team.

Brown’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, reportedly dropped him until Brown can seek counsel.



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The JFK Mistress Gunned Down in Cold Blood…


People who knew her could never forget her. And people who have read about her since her murder have been haunted by her story, which lies at the heart of America’s ultimate undying narrative of romance and conspiracy. 



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DC COMICS' first Asian American GREEN LANTERN Lantern is boy who fights racism…


When the author Minh Lê began thinking of ways he could put his own spin on the story of the classic DC Comics character the Green Lantern, he suddenly recalled the jade ring his late grandmother always wore.

Lê’s grandmother, Ton Nu Tuy-Nhan, had brought the ring with her when she and the rest of the family fled Vietnam as refugees during the Vietnam War. As Lê began developing the storyline for his middle-grade graphic novel “Green Lantern: Legacy,” which DC Comics is set to release Tuesday, he realized that making his main character a Vietnamese American boy who is granted supernatural powers through a jade ring he inherits from an elder would be a perfect fit for the story he wanted to tell.

“There was something about that imagery and iconography of the character that felt really familiar,” Lê said of the Green Lantern, who was introduced to comics readers in 1940.

“That’s when I thought of that image of my grandmother and her jade ring. Once I had that picture in my head, the rest of the story kind of fell into place,” he said in an interview.

“Green Lantern: Legacy” marks the first time the character has been depicted as an Asian American. The original comic introduced readers to a white New Yorker named Alan Scott, but in recent years the Green Lantern has diversified. In 2012, readers were introduced to Simon Baz, a Muslim American of Lebanese descent, and the first female Green Lantern, a Latin American woman named Jessica Cruz, was unveiled in 2013.

Illustrated by the Singaporean artist Andie Tong, “Green Lantern: Legacy” explores the story of Tai Pham, an introspective middle schooler who lives in an apartment above the store his grandmother diligently runs. Tai’s world is rocked one day when he puts on his grandmother’s ring and realizes that he is the Green Lantern. As he comes into his powers, the ordinarily quiet Tai realizes that it is his job to protect his neighborhood from racist bullies while building on the legacy his grandmother began in Vietnam.

The Morning Rundown

Get a head start on the morning’s top stories.

Pages from ‘Green Lantern: Legacy.’DC Comics

Lê, himself the father of two children, said writing the book made him realize just how critical the middle school years can be.

“I always say that kids of this age are very much living their own origin story,” he said. “Writing for a middle-grade audience means writing about what it means to navigate the world.”

Lê said that as he was growing up in a family of refugees and immigrants, he found it particularly powerful to be given the chance to remake an iconic American character into a story about a Vietnamese American boy and his grandmother. But that responsibility also came with a fair bit of pressure.

“With that meaning comes a lot of anxiety as you are writing,” he said. “You’re trying to represent a culture that is so personal while also trying to get all of the details right.”

A particularly poignant moment occurs when young Tai gets a glimpse of what life was like in Vietnam at the height of the war. Even more shocking is the moment he learns that, as the Green Lantern, he’ll be continuing a legacy that began with his grandmother.

“When Tai is introduced to the Green Lantern mythology, they talk to him about creativity, and he says, ‘Well, my grandmother was never creative,'” Lê said, adding that it is then pointed out to Tai that migration, by its nature, is a creative act.

“To me, that was a moment to pay tribute to not only my grandmother but to that whole generation of people who uprooted themselves and came to this country with almost nothing but the fortitude and creativity to carve out a life,” he said.

Pages from ‘Green Lantern: Legacy.’DC Comics

It was also personally significant that Lê had the chance to tell a very different story about the Vietnam War from the one typically told to young American readers.

“When you go to the bookstore or library growing up, there’s this huge section on Vietnam, but it’s all about the Vietnam War. Books about Vietnam as a country and Vietnamese people are only there as the backdrop to American historical trauma,” he said. “So to be able to write a story that centers our community — where we’re not just background characters or sidekicks but the actual heroes of the story — was really meaningful.”

But telling a story that embodied his grandmother’s courage came with its own difficulties. As in many refugee families, Lê’s relatives were often hesitant to talk about life during the war or the struggles they faced during their early years in the United States.

“The stories of my family’s departure from Vietnam in particular weren’t stories I grew up with. It wasn’t something our family talked about,” he said. “I wanted to talk about that, too, because we have such a rich history, but there is also so much pain there.”

Pages from ‘Green Lantern: Legacy.’DC Comics

Ultimately, Lê hopes, readers of all backgrounds and ages will embrace their own powers, superheroic or otherwise.

“Anyone has the potential to be a hero and to step up when it matters,” he said. “For readers to come away from this to look at the real-life heroism that surrounds them on a daily basis — that would be a huge win for me.”



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Lose First Battle to Subpoena White House…


Democrats lost the first round in President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial when the Senate voted down an attempt by Chuck Schumer to subpoena a cache of documents from the White House regarding the Ukraine.

Lawmakers tabled Schumer’s amendment 53-47 on a strict party line vote.   

Schumer wanted to subpoena documents from the administration related to Trump’s communications with the president of the Ukraine and on intra-administration communication on the with holding – and later release – of U.S. military aid to the Ukraine.

The Senate Democratic Leader plans to push a series of amendments in Tuesday’s hearing to amend Mitch McConnell’s resolution on how Trump’s trial will proceed.

Next Schumer will push to subpoena relevant documents from the State Department. 

But McConnell has made clear he has the votes among his Republican majority to shoot down any Democratic legislative maneuvers. 

Thus far Democrats have been running out the clock. The resolution McConnell proposed and each amendment Schumer has to it is entitled to two hours of debate time on the Senate floor – an hour for each side to make its case.  

Trump’s trial got off to an angry clash as Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff accused the president of engaging in a ‘corrupt’ effort to get Ukraine to help him ‘cheat’ in his reelection.

Schiff, a California Democrat who is heading a team of impeachment managers, made his case before 100 senators seated at their desks – telling them they must provide for a ‘fair trial’ that lets each side make its case. But his initial argument, put forward over the rules of the trial themselves, didn’t keep him from digging into the Ukraine affair that constitutes the first article of impeachment against him.

President Trump ‘seeks the full and complete destruction of a co-equal branch of government,’ said Schiff, who played video of Trump saying the Constitution’s Article II gives him the power to ‘do whatever I want.’

On Ukraine, Schiff accused Trump of ‘soliciting a foreign power to help him cheat in the next election.’

He called for a full trial complete with appearances by witnesses – including by acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and forced out national security advisor John Bolton. 

‘You may never know the full scope of the president’s misconduct or those around him, and neither will the American people’ without hearing from them, Schiff said.

Democrats blasted the rules put to a vote by Republicans as a ‘cover-up’ and Republicans unifying around a common procedure that sets up late night political drama.

But in one possible concession to push-back, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell put forward a rules package allowing for 24 hours of debate for each side spread over three days – rather than two. The earlier timetable would have ensured debates as late as 2 or 3 am. He made the change under pressure from Sen. Susan Collins of Maine and others – the first indication that McConnell had to trim his preferences to maintain support from a small group of centrists.

‘Senator Collins and others raised concerns about the 24 hours of opening statements in 2 days and the admission of the House transcript in the record. Her position has been that the trial should follow the Clinton model as much as possible. She thinks these changes are a significant improvement,’ Collins spokesperson Annie Clark said in a statement. 

President Trump weighed in with a tweet from Switzerland, where he attending meetings in Davos.

‘READ THE TRANSCRIPTS!’ Trump wrote.  

'READ THE TRANSCRIPTS!' Trump wrote fro Switzerland

‘READ THE TRANSCRIPTS!’ Trump wrote fro Switzerland

The fireworks began At 1.17pm, as Chief Justice John Roberts took the chair – 17 minutes behind schedule – and began by swearing in James Inhofe, the Oklahoma Republican who missed the formal swearing in last week.

It is a dramatic moment in history: the Senate will now adjudicate just the third impeachment trial of a U.S. president, with Trump and his ‘perfect’ call to Ukraine on trial before a jury of 100 senators – 53 of them from the party the president has dominated for three years. 

He is accused of abusing his power by withholding military aid from Ukraine in an attempt to force an investigation of Joe Biden, the 2020 Democratic frontrunner, and of obstructing Congress by refusing to cooperate with its investigating into Ukraine.

Mindful that process can shape the outcome, Democrats unloaded over proposed rules to govern the trial unveiled by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell off Kentucky that set up a rush of 12-hour days and late night Senate sessions.

Those procedures don’t automatically allow for the full written record from the House or witnesses Democrats are demanding be heard during the course of the trial.

‘Leader McConnell wants the process rushed with as little evidence as possible in the dark of night,’ fumed Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York Tuesday morning.  

Those rules must be debated in the Senate and voted on, and Schumer said he will insist on amendments, but vowed not to be ‘dilatory.’ 

‘If proved, the president’s actions are crimes against democracy itself,’ said Schumer in remarks on the Senate floor. 

Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chairman who will lead the Democrats’ prosecution of Donald Trump called the rules an attempt to ‘rig’ the trial.

Prosecuting the case: Adam Schiff starts the Democrats' case - saying senators need to call for witnesses and documentart evidence immediately

Prosecuting the case: Adam Schiff starts the Democrats’ case – saying senators need to call for witnesses and documentart evidence immediately

Republican side: Mitch McConnell unveiled trial rules which would prevent witnesses being called until after senators have asked questions of the prosecution and defense

Republican side: Mitch McConnell unveiled trial rules which would prevent witnesses being called until after senators have asked questions of the prosecution and defense - and Pat Cipollone, the president's White House counsel and lead attorney, who has never been heard speaking on television before, supported him

Republican side: Mitch McConnell unveiled trial rules which would prevent witnesses being called until after senators have asked questions of the prosecution and defense – and Pat Cipollone, the president’s White House counsel and lead attorney, who has never been heard speaking on television before, supported him

Beginning: Chief Justice John Roberts started the trial at 1.17pm, marking the real beginning of only the third ever impeachment trial of a president

Beginning: Chief Justice John Roberts started the trial at 1.17pm, marking the real beginning of only the third ever impeachment trial of a president

Opening: The Senate's sergeant-at-arms Michael Stenger formally warns senators to be silent, as the Democratic impeachment managers sit to the left and the Trump defense to the right

Opening: The Senate’s sergeant-at-arms Michael Stenger formally warns senators to be silent, as the Democratic impeachment managers sit to the left and the Trump defense to the right

Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chairman who will lead the Democrats' prosecution of Donald Trump called the rules an attempt to 'rig' the trial.

Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chairman who will lead the Democrats’ prosecution of Donald Trump called the rules an attempt to ‘rig’ the trial.

Senate minority leader, Charles Schumer, D-NY.,and Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, went head-to-head over procedure before the formal start of the trial

Senate minority leader, Charles Schumer, D-NY.,and Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, went head-to-head over procedure before the formal start of the trial

Senate minority leader, Charles Schumer, D-NY.,and Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, went head-to-head over procedure before the formal start of the trial

White House Counsel Pat Cipollone arrives for the Senate impeachment trial of US President Donald Trump at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 21, 2020. Democrats complained that he is also a fact witness to the case

White House Counsel Pat Cipollone and attorney Jay Sekulow (L), members of US President Donald Trump's defense team, arrive for the Senate impeachment trial of Trump at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 21, 2020

White House Counsel Pat Cipollone arrives for the Senate impeachment trial of US President Donald Trump at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 21, 2020. Democrats complained that he is also a fact witness to the case

House Democratic impeachment managers, Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., flanked by Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., left, and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., arrive for a news conference at the Capitol

House Democratic impeachment managers, Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., flanked by Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., left, and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., arrive for a news conference at the Capitol

Chief Justice John Roberts is presiding over the trial

Chief Justice John Roberts is presiding over the trial

House managers and White House lawyers each sat at opposing benches on either side of the Senate chamber. Senators were crequired to remain seated at their desks

House managers and White House lawyers each sat at opposing benches on either side of the Senate chamber. Senators were crequired to remain seated at their desks

 

Ready for action: Mitch McConnell makes his way to the Senate chamber to speak - firing the starting gun on a drawn-out debate on how the trial will take place

Ready for action: Mitch McConnell makes his way to the Senate chamber to speak – firing the starting gun on a drawn-out debate on how the trial will take place

'When the Russia investigation failed it then devolved into Ukraine.,' said lawyer for Donald Trump Jay Sekulow

‘When the Russia investigation failed it then devolved into Ukraine.,’ said lawyer for Donald Trump Jay Sekulow

Attorney Martin Raskin (C) and attorney Jane Raskin (R) arrive along with other members of the defense team for US President Donald J. Trump for the Senate impeachment trial in the US Capitol

Attorney Martin Raskin (C) and attorney Jane Raskin (R) arrive along with other members of the defense team for US President Donald J. Trump for the Senate impeachment trial in the US Capitol

'READ THE TRANSCRIPTS!' tweeted President Trump from Davos, where he had meetings scheduled with world leaders including Swiss President Simonetta Sommaruga

‘READ THE TRANSCRIPTS!’ tweeted President Trump from Davos, where he had meetings scheduled with world leaders including Swiss President Simonetta Sommaruga

Key figure: Moderate Republican Mitt Romney is now at the center of the storm over whether witnesses will be called

Key figure: Moderate Republican Mitt Romney is now at the center of the storm over whether witnesses will be called

READ THE ARTICLES OF IMPEACHMENT AGAINST DONALD TRUMP

In 1,414 words, the articles of impeachment passed by the House of Representatives lay out two charges against President Donald Trump.

Article I: Abuse of Power

Using the powers of his high office, President Trump solicited the interference of a foreign government, Ukraine, in the 2020 United States Presidential election.

He did so through a scheme or course of conduct that included soliciting the Government of Ukraine to publicly announce investigations that would benefit his reelection, harm the election prospects of a political opponent, and influence the 2020 United States Presidential election to his advantage.

President Trump also sought to pressure the Government of Ukraine to take these steps by conditioning official United States Government acts of significant value to Ukraine on its public announcement of the investigations.

President Trump engaged in this scheme or course of conduct for corrupt purposes in pursuit of personal political benefit. In so doing, President Trump used the powers of the Presidency in a manner that compromised the national security of the United States and undermined the integrity of the United States democratic process.’

Article II: Obstruction of Congress

As part of this impeachment inquiry, the Committees undertaking the investigation served subpoenas seeking documents and testimony deemed vital to the inquiry from various Executive Branch agencies and offices, and current and former officials.

In response, without lawful cause or excuse, President Trump directed Executive Branch agencies, offices, and officials not to comply with those subpoenas. President Trump thus interposed the powers of the Presidency against the lawful subpoenas of the House of Representatives, and assumed to himself functions and judgments necessary to the exercise of the ‘sole Power of Impeachment’ vested by the Constitution in the House of Representatives.

In the history of the Republic, no President has ever ordered the complete defiance of an impeachment inquiry or sought to obstruct and impede so comprehensively the ability of the House of Representatives to investigate ‘high Crimes and Misdemeanors.”

This abuse of office served to cover up the President’s own repeated misconduct and to seize and control the power of impeachment — and thus to nullify a vital constitutional safeguard vested solely in the House of Representatives. 

He told senators: ‘The most important question is the question you must answer today; will the president and the American people get a fair trial? Will there be a fair trial?’

He said if senators don’t allow for witnesses and a full record of documents of the president’s conduct: ‘You may never know the full scope of the president’s misconduct or those around him, and neither will the American people.’ 

‘You have all now sworn an oath to do impartial justice,’ he told them.  ‘That oath binds you. That oath supersedes all else.’

Schiff summoned his most high-powered witness by playing a video tape of Trump himself, speaking inside the White House.

‘I would love to have [Secretary of State] Mike Pompeo, I would love to have Mick [Mulvaney]. I would love to have [Energy Secretary] Rick Perry and many other people testify,’ Trump said in comments played for senators.

The Senate has an opportunity to take the president up on his offer.

Schumer called the rules ‘completely partisan’ and said they ‘seem to be designed by president Trump for President Trump.’

The first would Schumer amendment subpoena the White House for documents related to the holdup of $391 million in aide to Ukraine amid a campaign to get Ukraine to investigate the Bidens. 

But Schumer appeared to acknowledge he might not be able to prevail, with even GOP waverers showing willingness to go along with the package.   

‘We need four Republicans who are willing to stand up for what’s right, who are willing to stand up for what America wants and needs, and not simply bow down to the president,’ said Schumer. 

Trump lawyers and White House lawyers made arguments that might appeal to senators as well as President Trump himself – making sure to bring up an episode that drew Trump’s fury: Schiff’s paraphrase of his infamous July 25 call with the president of Ukraine.

Sekulow bashed Schiff for his opening statement when he paraphrased Trump’s defense strategy.

‘And what we just heard from Manager Schiff: court’s have no role, privileges don’t apply, what happened in the past, we should just ignore,’ Sekulow said in his opening argument on the Senate Floor Tuesday afternoon.

‘In fact, Manager Schiff just said – tried to summarise my colleague’s defence of the president. He said, ‘Not in those words, of course,’ which is not the first time Mr. Schiff has put words into transcripts that did not exist,’ the president’s personal attorney continued.

Sekulow lamented that the Democrats have not yet given the president due process in the impeachment proceedings and don’t intend to quietly allow Republicans to do so in the Senate.

‘Let me quote from the House impeachment report at page 16,’ Sekulow said. ‘Although President Trump has, in times, invoked the motion of due process, an impeachment trial – an impeachment inquiry is not a criminal trial and should not be confused with it.’

Sekulow argued that due process is meant to protect the person who is accused in a case, which in this instant would be Trump. But during the House impeachment probe, none of the witnesses Republicans requested be called to testify were approved by the Democrat majority chamber.

‘Believe me,’ the president’s lawyer continued, ‘what has taken place in these proceedings is not to be confused with due process. Because due process demands, and the Constitution requires that fundamental fairness and due process – we’re hearing a lot about due process – due process is designed to protect the person accused.’ 

During the opening remarks at an Intelligence hearing in September, Schiff paraphrased the essence of a conversation Trump held with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in July – which eventually sparked the whistle-blower complaint that launched the impeachment probe. 

McConnell defended his rules package, and said he had already obtained the support needed to push them through.

Those rules will answer questions such as: ‘Can the Senate still serve our founding purpose?’ McConnell said.. ‘Can we still but fairness and even-handedness and historical precedent’ despite the ‘partisan passions of the day?’ he asked.

He said any vote on amendments would occur ‘after – after – opening arguments and senators questions,’ having secured support from key GOP senators for the idea.

‘Nobody will dictate procedure to United States senators he said, taking issue with complaints by Democratic House impeachment managers.  

He said if a senator moves to bring witnesses or change procedures before that point: ‘I will move to table such amendments and protect our bipartisan precedent.’ 

‘Fair is fair. The process was good enough for president Clinton … it ought to be good enough for this president as well,’ said McConnell. 

McConnell spoke on the Senate floor after House Democrats penned an explosive lawyer to the head of President Donald Trump’s legal team hours before the impeachment trial was set to begin – saying lawyer Pat Cipollone may be a ‘material witness’ to two impeachment articles.

Schiff used a visual aide to show past impeachment trials and how many witnesses were heard from

Schiff used a visual aide to show past impeachment trials and how many witnesses were heard from

Diplomat Kurt Volker wrote ambassador Gordon Sondland it was 'crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign'

Diplomat Kurt Volker wrote ambassador Gordon Sondland it was ‘crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign’

Democrats pointed to documents accumulated for past impeachments

Democrats pointed to documents accumulated for past impeachments

Schiff made his case for presidential obstruction as he appeared for new documents and witnesses

Schiff made his case for presidential obstruction as he appeared for new documents and witnesses

Schiff cited past trials as precedent, but McConnell indicated he had the votes to pass a rules package he proposed

Schiff cited past trials as precedent, but McConnell indicated he had the votes to pass a rules package he proposed

The gambit comes hours before the start of the historic Senate impeachment trial, amid an angry fight over the processes that will govern it. They write that the issues are ‘directly implicated’ by his involvement matters dealing with the first impeachment article, which accuses Trump of abuse of power in his conduct toward Ukraine.

House impeachment managers wrote Cipollone that multiple impeachment witnesses testified that they ‘raised concerns about the President’s scheme with John Eisenberg’ – a White House lawyer who ‘reports directly to you in your capacity as White House counsel.’

They cite such witnesses as national security official Fiona Hill, as well as Purple Heart Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman. National security official Timothy Morrison also testified he reported events to Eisenberg. 

The letter mentions that similar matters where someone serves as both counsel and a fact witness an result in ‘disqualification’ – although the letter does not call for this directly.

It is signed by seven House impeachment managers, including California Rep. Adam Schiff, who oversaw the inquiry where Vindman, Hill, and others testified about the administration’s policy toward Ukraine. 

‘Mr. Eisenberg appears to have informed you of at least some, if not all, of these incidents,’ they write.   

Said Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah: ‘Overall, it aligns closely with the rules package approved 100-0 during the Clinton trial’ – a characterization Schumer disputes.

‘If attempts are made to vote on witnesses prior to opening arguments, I would oppose those efforts,’ said Romney, who has previously indicated he wants to hear from witnesses. An opportunity for a second vote may come later. 

The chamber’s procedures will be governed by a combination of precedent, improvisation, and raw political power – with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell withholding his proposed rules to govern debate until the final hours before the most senior Republican gavels in the start of the trial.

Neither side is predicting that Democrats can muster the two-thirds needed to remove a president from office. But neither are they diminishing the political stakes, with Trump’s fate, the 2020 elections, and control of Congress all arguably up for grabs. 

A rhetorical battle that has been fought on Twitter and in Capitol hearing rooms for years has now been joined by a phalanx of lawyers – with the president’s legal team mocking the procedure as a ‘charade’ based on ‘flimsy evidence.’ 

A group of seven House impeachment managers – Congressmen who are a diverse bunch of lawyers and litigators who nevertheless have never dealt with a case of this magnitude – punched back with their own filing Monday, citing ‘overwhelming evidence’ of Trump’s guilt. 

The public, too, is weighing in, on Monday in the form of a new CNN poll that found a 51 per cent majority now backs Trump’s removal from office. But Trump’s political base is holding, with 45 per cent saying the Senate should vote against removal – about the same percentage that backs Trump in most surveys of his approval.

Poll says 51% of Americans want Senate to REMOVE Donald Trump from office 

Americans are split on whether the Senate should move to remove Donald Trump from office, with 51 per cent saying a poll released Monday that he should be convicted.

 

In the CNN/SSRS poll, 45 per cent of Americans said the Senate should not vote to convict and remove the president and 4 per cent of respondents said they had no opinion on the matter.

But 89 per cent of Democrats believe he should be convicted and removed from office while only 8 per cent of Republicans agree. Independent voters are split. 

The poll comes the day before the Senate is set to begin the proceedings in the impeachment trial.

It also shows a slight shift from the same poll in December, which had 47 per cent of Americans said Trump should not be removed compared to the 45 per cent who want to see him ousted from the White House.

Of the 1,156 respondents, 58 per cent feel Trump did abuse his power of the presidency and 57 per cent say it’s true he obstructed the House from being able to properly investigate him.

 

But on a critical procedural question, the public has shifted against the president’s position: An overwhelming 69 per cent of Americans want a trial with witnesses. That includes a 48 per cent plurality of Republicans and 69 per cent of independents.

The number follows an intensive push for witnesses by congressional Democrats who found themselves stymied by White House obstruction during their House impeachment inquiry. They even included ‘Obstruction of Congress’ as the second of two articles of impeachment. The first is ‘abuse of power.’ Both were voted out of the house on a mostly party-line vote.

Senate Minority Leader Schumer is vowing to demand a vote on witnesses at the first available opportunity at the outset of the trial and stepped up that call Monday night, calling the planned rules ‘a national disgrace’ and ‘a cover-up, not a trial.’

McConnell appears to have his conference in line for now – but that does not mean he can prevent a potential rump group from breaking off later in the trial. 

Senator Mitt Romney of Utah – who delivered a blistering critique of Trump before the November 2016 election – and perennial holdout Susan Collins of purple state Maine have each expressed support for witnesses in some capacity.

Another key change allowed for evidence presented in the House to automatically come over to the Senate – rather than requiring a special vote to allow it. 

The focus on witnesses come as Democrats continue to bet the next explosive revelation that could somehow shift the arithmetic is right around the corner. 

As is so often the case in the Senate, impeachment will kick off not with a substantive debate about the matter at hand, but a clash over the process itself.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell –  only hours before debate was set to begin – put out his proposed rules. They would provide for a series of late night, with blocks of 24 hours set aside for each side to make its case, then another 16 hours for senators to ask written questions.

Schumer blasted the proposal as ‘nothing short of a national disgrace,’ and vowed to try to amend the procedure.  

After a two-hour debate over process, Schumer gets to offer his own ideas as amendments – something he is vowing to do. He wants to call at least four witnesses and bring forth documents related to Ukraine. The Senate next is set to go into closed session for lawmakers to figure out a way forward.

That is a throw-back to 1999, when leaders of both parties orchestrated a closed meeting inside the old Senate chamber to figure out how to get to a trial. But in that case, even amid a fraught party clash, senators reached a 100-vote consensus on how to proceed. 

The preceding few weeks have seen an astonishing amount of new material emerge, with no certainty yet that it will change any minds in the trial.

House Democrats handed over reams of documents, including voluminous material provided by indicted former Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas, who has said he participated in efforts to get the government of Ukraine to investigate the Bidens. 

Parnas turned over such items as a May 2019 letter from Giuliani to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky seeking a private meeting and saying he was acting with Trump’s ‘knowledge and consent.’

He also turned over photos of himself with Trump, Trump family members, and key Trump World figures. His lawyer says he wants to testify. 

Each side will make arguments as best they can in initial one-hour increments. House managers include California Rep. Adam Schiff, who Trump lawyers singled out for denying the president ‘any semblance of fairness’ while overseeing House proceedings.

Schiff, in remarks before the House Intelligence committee, has accused the president of orchestrating a ‘shakedown’ of Ukraine for his own political benefit.

On the sidelines is presidential candidate Vice President Joe Biden, whose own work on Ukraine under President Obama has become part of the Trump defense. Republicans are threatening to call his surviving son, Hunter, as a witness, due to Hunter Biden’s lucrative position on the board of a Ukrainian energy company, Burisma, that was part of the push by Trump and his allies for a probe that might tarnish a rival.

But with a trial that could last week, the former VP will have ample time to travel Iowa and early primary states, while rival senators Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Amy Klobuchar will sit view the trial as jurors in the Senate.

Like fellow colleagues, they won’t be able to make speeches on the floor – just ask written questions.

Also out of the spotlight will be Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani. He was left off the president’s dozen-strong legal team, having spent months arguing the president’s case on television. But he will certainly be part of the record, whether or not former national security advisor John Bolton is allowed to testify. Bolton disparaged the ‘drug deal’ Giuliani was running in Ukraine, according to witness testimony. 

Weighing in from across the Atlantic will be President Trump, who opted to fly to meeting at the annual economic conference in Davos. He spent part of Monday tweeting about what he calls the impeachment ‘hoax.’ 

Trump’s legal team asserted Monday that he did ‘absolutely nothing wrong,’ calling the impeachment case against him ‘flimsy’ and a ‘dangerous perversion of the Constitution.’ The lawyers decried the impeachment process as rigged and insisted that abuse of power was not a crime.

What isn’t year clear is when the key moments in Trump’s happen – and whether anyone will be awake when they occur. Under the rules proposed by McConnell, some of the action could be taking place after midnight, unless Republicans back down under accusations of setting up a ‘cover-up.’  

The brief from Trump’s lawyers, filed before arguments expected this week in the Senate impeachment trial, offered the most detailed glimpse of the lines of defense they intend to use against Democratic efforts to convict the president and oust him from office over his dealings with Ukraine.

It is meant as a counter to a filing two days ago from House Democrats that summarized weeks of testimony from more than a dozen witnesses in laying out the impeachment case.

The 110-page filing from the White House shifted the tone toward a more legal response. It still hinged on Trump´s assertion he did nothing wrong and did not commit a crime – even though impeachment does not depend on a material violation of law but rather on the more vague definition of ‘other high crimes and misdemeanors’ as established in the Constitution.

‘It is a constitutional travesty,’ the lawyers wrote.

The document says the two articles of impeachment brought against the president – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – don’t amount to impeachment offenses. It asserts that the impeachment inquiry, centered on Trump’s request that Ukraine’s president open an investigation into Democratic rival Joe Biden, was never about finding the truth.

‘Instead, House Democrats were determined from the outset to find some way – any way – to corrupt the extraordinary power of impeachment for use as a political tool to overturn the result of the 2016 election and to interfere in the 2020 election,’ Trump’s legal team wrote. ‘All of that is a dangerous perversion of the Constitution that the Senate should swiftly and roundly condemn.’

‘The Senate should speedily reject these deficient articles of impeachment and acquit the president,’ according to a summary.

Trump’s team continues to attack the ‘abuse of power’ articles voted through the House, which lawyer Alan Dershowitz has argued does not constitute a crime. 

‘House Democrats’ newly-invented ‘abuse of power’ theory collapses at the threshold because it fails to allege any violation of law whatsoever,’ they write.

The prosecution team of House managers was expected to spend another day on Capitol Hill preparing for the trial, which will be under heavy security. Before the filing, House prosecutors arrived on Capitol Hill to tour the Senate chamber.

Earlier Monday, Trump claimed Democrats ‘didn’t want’ fired national security advisor John Bolton to testify. Counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway told Fox news the president ‘may exert executive privilege’ to prevent Bolton from testifying before the Senate. ‘The House should have called John Bolton if they were so anxious to hear from them,’ she said. 

‘Very little, although the president may exert executive privilege.

The impeachment case accuses Trump of abusing power by withholding military aid from Ukraine at the same time that the president was seeking an investigation into Biden, and of obstructing Congress by instructing aides to not participate. But Trump’s team contended Monday that even if Trump were to have abused his power in withholding the Ukraine military assistance, it would not be impeachable, because it did not violate a specific criminal statute.

Opening arguments are expected within days following a debate Tuesday over rules, including about whether witnesses are to be called in the trial.

All about the Bidens: The trial grows out of Trump's attempts to get Ukraine to investigate Hunter and Joe Biden over the former vice-president's son's role as the director of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy giant, despite having no expertise in energy or ability to speak Ukrainian

All about the Bidens: The trial grows out of Trump’s attempts to get Ukraine to investigate Hunter and Joe Biden over the former vice-president’s son’s role as the director of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy giant, despite having no expertise in energy or ability to speak Ukrainian

The trial begins after stunning new revelations from Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas

The trial begins after stunning new revelations from Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas

Trump signaled his opposition to witnesses, tweeting Monday: ‘They didn’t want John Bolton and others in the House. They were in too much of a rush. Now they want them all in the Senate. Not supposed to be that way!’

That’s a reference to former national security adviser John Bolton, who was not subpoenaed by the House in its impeachment inquiry but has said he is willing to testify in the Senate if he is subpoenaed.

The White House brief argues that the articles of impeachment passed by the House are ‘structurally deficient’ because they charge multiple acts, creating ‘a menu of options’ as possible grounds for conviction.

The Trump team claims that the Constitution requires that senators agree ‘on the specific basis for conviction’ and that there is no way to ensure that the senators agree on which acts are worthy of removal.

The Trump lawyers accused Democrats of diluting the standards for impeachment, an argument that echoed the case made Sunday by one of Trump’s attorneys, Alan Dershowitz, who contended in talk shows that impeachable offenses must be ‘criminal-like conduct.’

That assertion has been rejected by scholars, and Rep. Adam Schiff, the Democratic chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, called it an ‘absurdist position.’

Earlier Monday, President Trump took up his own impeachment defense, complaining that he got ‘ZERO’ fairness during a House inquiry and claiming Democrats ‘didn’t want’ security advisor John Bolton as a witness.

Trump made his case Monday on the eve of the debut of arguments in his Senate impeachment trial – amid a still unresolved debate and speculation about whether a rump group of Republicans will join Democrats to push for witnesses.

Trump complained he got 'ZERO' fairness in the House inquiry

Trump complained he got ‘ZERO’ fairness in the House inquiry

Trump tweeted that Democrats 'didn't want' John Bolton to appear, although they sought his testimony

Trump tweeted that Democrats ‘didn’t want’ John Bolton to appear, although they sought his testimony

'They didn’t want John Bolton and others in the House,' Trump said of the Democratic impeachment inquiry and his fired national security advisor

‘They didn’t want John Bolton and others in the House,’ Trump said of the Democratic impeachment inquiry and his fired national security advisor

Bolton, Trump’s fired national security advisor, has become a key figure, following testimony by other witnesses that he called the Ukraine policy being carried out by Rudy Giuliani, the White House acting chief of staff, and a U.S. ambassador a ‘drug deal.’ 

‘They didn’t want John Bolton and others in the House. They were in too much of a rush. Now they want them all in the Senate. Not supposed to be that way!’ Trump tweeted Monday. 

He also went after Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, whose caucus and Senate colleagues have been sworn in to impartially weigh evidence against Trump. 

‘Cryin’ Chuck Schumer is now asking for ‘fairness’, when he and the Democrat House members worked together to make sure I got ZERO fairness in the House. So, what else is new?’ Trump wrote.

The House invited Bolton to testify in its impeachment inquiry, but the fired national security advisor then joined an effort to seek a ruling from a federal judge about whether he could appear. Bolton’s lawyer asked a judge to rule on whether his client should comply with the request from Congress or a White House instruction for witnesses not to appear.  

Early this year, Bolton said through his lawyer that he was willing to appear in the Senate trial. Amid the standoff, the House did not subpoena Bolton, although it heard from multiple officials who spoke of his role – including security advisor Fiona Hill, who testified about his ‘drug deal’ comment.

‘I am not part of whatever drug deal Sondland and Mulvaney are cooking up,’ Hill said Bolton told her. Hill also said Bolton consider Giuliani, who was working to dig up information on the Bidens in Ukraine, a ‘hand grenade.’

Schumer said Sunday he would force a vote on allowing witnesses as the Senate impeachment trial gets underway Tuesday.  

‘We have the right to do it, We are going to do it and we are going to do it at the beginning on Tuesday if leader [Sen. Mitch] McConnell doesn’t call for these witnesses in his proposal,’ he said.

‘If they say well let’s wait and hear the arguments we’ll want a vote after they hear the arguments as well and we will do everything we can to force votes again,’ he said. He would need to assemble 51 votes – which would include four Republicans – to prevail.

House Intelligence Chair Rep. Adam Schiff said of Bolton this year, after the House had already voted out two impeachment articles: ‘If we are proceeding in a rationale way where we are trying to be fair to the President and fair to the American people, he should testify before the triers of fact, which are the senators.’ 

John Bolton called Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani a 'hand grenade,' according to impeachment witness Fiona Hill. Here he is pictured with former associate Lev Parnas, who has come forward to speak publicly about his efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate the Bidens

John Bolton called Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani a ‘hand grenade,’ according to impeachment witness Fiona Hill. Here he is pictured with former associate Lev Parnas, who has come forward to speak publicly about his efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate the Bidens 

Trump’s push against witnesses comes as key Republicans including Utah Sen. Mitt Romney and Susan Collins of Maine have spoken about witnesses. Romney says he would like to hear from Bolton, and Collins has said she is ‘likely’ to back a motion to hear from witnesses. 

Democrats have demanded the Senate hear from witnesses for there to be a fair trial – after the White House refused to allow key figures like Mulaney to appear. 

The process fight comes days after Trump’s legal team put forward the legal argument that abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – the two impeachment articles passed by the House – do not even constitute a crime.     

‘The Articles of Impeachment are constitutionally invalid on their face. They fail to allege any crime or violation of law whatsoever, let alone ‘high Crimes and Misdemeanors,’ as required by the Constitution,’ Trump’s lawyers wrote in a six-page brief released Saturday.

‘They are the result of a lawless process … Nothing in these Articles could permit even beginning to consider removing a duly elected President or warrant nullifying an election and subverting the will of the American people,’ according to the brief, signed by Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow and White House counsel Pat Cipollone and  

They wrote in response to a lengthy Democratic legal brief arguing that Trump violated his oath and abused his office.  

‘In fact, it alleges no violation of law whatsoever. House Democrats ‘abuse of power’ claim would do lasting damage to the separation fo powers under the Constitution,’ Trump’s team responded.

Trump lawyer Alan Dershowitz has made a similar argument in TV appearances, as he did on ABC’s ‘This Week’ Sunday. He cited Justice Benjamin Curtis and the impeachment of Andrew Johnson – who he said forwarded the argument that an impeachable offense must also be a crime. That trial involved dozens of witnesses. 

‘So I am making an argument much like the argument made by the great Justice Curtis,’ said Dershowitz. ‘And to call them absurdist is to, you know, insult one of the greatest jurists in American history. The argument is a strong one. The Senate should hear it.’  

The House on Monday filed its own reply to the arguments put forth by Trump’s team in response to the impeachment articles.

‘President Trump maintains that the Senate cannot remove him even if the House proves every claim in the Articles of impeachment. That is a chilling assertion. It is also dead wrong. The Framers deliberately drafted a Constitution that allows the Senate to remove Presidents who, like President Trump, abuse their power to cheat in elections, betray our national security, and ignore checks and balances,’ House impeachment managers wrote in a document that bears all of their names.

‘Despite President Trump’s stonewalling of the impeachment inquiry, the House amassed overwhelming evidence of his guilt,’ they added. ‘It did so through fair procedures rooted firmly in the Constitution and precedent. It extended President Trump protections equal to, or greater than, those afforded to Presidents in prior impeachment inquiries. To prevent President Trump’s obstruction from delaying justice until after the very election he seeks to corrupt, the House moved to decisively to adopt the two Articles of impeachment. Still, new evidence continues to emerge, all of which confirms these charges,’ they added.

THE IMPEACHMENT MANAGERS: MEET THE SEVEN DEMOCRATS PROSECUTING DONALD TRUMP

Adam Schiff of California: The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, 59, led the impeachment process against Donald Trump. He became a frequent target of Trump’s fury: the president called him ‘Liddle’ Adam Schiff and made fun of his neck. But Schiff won praise for his leadership during witnesses hearings. Schiff served in the California State Assembly and was a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles for six years. He oversaw the prosecution of Richard Miller, the first FBI agent ever to be indicted for espionage. Elected to Congress in 2012. 

Jerry Nadler of New York: The Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, 72, led the series of hearings that developed the two articles of impeachment against the president: abuse of power and obstruction of justice. He’s in his 15th term in Congress and was a New York State Assembly man before joining Capitol Hill. He was in law school when he was first elected to state office and completed his J.D. while serving in Albany. He and Schiff were expected to be named. Elected to Congress in 1992.

Zoe Lofgren of California: A close Nancy Pelosi ally and a long time friend of the speaker, Lofgren, 72, has the unique experience of playing a role in three presidential impeachment proceedings: as a Judiciary Committee staffer during Richard Nixon’s in 1974, as a Judiciary Committee Member during Bill Clinton’s 1999 impeachment, and now in President Trump’s. Additionally, she heads the Committee on House Administration, a position that has the moniker ‘Mayor of Capitol Hill’ given the panel’s jurisdiction over the everyday running of the Capitol, including members’ allowance, office space, and rules of the House. Elected to Congress in 1994.

Hakeem Jeffries of New York: Jeffries, 49, was a litigator in private practice before running for elected office. He worked in the litigation department of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison before becoming assistant litigator for Viacom and CBS, where he worked on litigation stemming from the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy, when Janet Jackson’s breast, adorned with a nipple shield, was exposed by Justin Timberlake for about half a second, in what was later referred to as a ‘wardrobe malfunction’. The Federal Election Commission fined CBS $550,000 after a long legal case. The Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, Jeffries serves on the House Judiciary Committee. Before Congress, he was in the New York State Assembly for six years. Elected to Congress in 2012 and a member of the House Judiciary Committee.

Val Demings of Florida: Demings, 62, served in the Orlando Police Department for 27 years, including serving as the city’s first female chief of police. She is one of seven children born in poverty – her father worked in Florida orange groves and her mother was a housekeeper. She was the first member of her family graduate from college. She worked as a social worker before joining the Orlando police department. A member of the House Intelligence panel and the Judiciary Committee, Demings won plaudits for her careful questioning of witnesses during the impeachment hearings. She wrote on Twitter in December, during the impeachment process: ‘I am a descendant of slaves, who knew that they would not make it, but dreamed and prayed that one day I would make it. So despite America’s complicated history, my faith is in the Constitution. I’ve enforced the laws, and now I write the laws. Nobody is above the law.’ She spends her free time riding her Harley-Davidson Road King Classic motorcycle. Elected to Congress in 2016.

Jason Crow of Colorado: Crow, 40, was an Army Ranger in Iraq and Afghanistan, where he served three tours and was awarded a Bronze Star. He was a private litigator with the Holland and Hart Law Firm before running for Congress. He was elected to Congress in 2018 and serves on the House Armed Services Committee.

Sylvia Garcia of Texas: Garcia, 69, has a strong judicial background. She was the director and presiding judge of the Houston Municipal System and was elected city controller. She was also the first Hispanic and first woman to be elected in her own right to the Harris County Commissioner’s Court. Elected to Congress in 2018, she serves on the House Judiciary Committee.

THE TRUMP DREAM TEAM: WHO’S DEFENDING PRESIDENT IN SENATE

Lead counsel: Pat Cipollone, White House Counsel

Millionaire conservative Catholic father-of-10 who has little courtroom experience. ‘Strong, silent,’ type who has earned praise from Trump’s camp for resisting Congress’ investigations of the Ukraine scandal. Critics accused him of failing in his duty as a lawyer by writing ‘nonsense letters’ to reject Congressional oversight. His background is commercial litigation and as White House counsel is the leader of the Trump administration’s drive to put conservative judges in federal courts. Trump has already asked aides behind the scenes if he will perform well on television. 

Jay Sekulow, president’s personal attorney

Millionaire one-time IRS prosecutor with his own talk radio show. Self-described Messianic Jew who was counsel to Jews for Jesus. Longtime legal adviser to Trump, but he is himself mentioned in the Ukraine affair, with Lev Parnas saying that he knew about Rudy Giuliani’s attempts to dig dirt on the Bidens but did not approve. Michael Cohen claimed that Sekulow and other members of Trump’s legal team put falsehoods in his statement to the House intel committee; Sekulow denies it. The New York Times reported that he voted for Hillary Clinton.

Alan Dershowitz, Harvard law professor

Shot to worldwide fame for his part in the ‘dream team’s’ successful defense of OJ Simpson but was already famous for his defense of Claus von Bulow, the British socialite accused of murdering his wife in Rhode Island. Ron Silver played Dershowitz in Reversal of Fortune. In 2008 he was a member of Jeffrey Epstein’s legal team which secured the lenient plea deal from federal prosecutors. But Dershowitz was a longtime friend of Epstein and was accused of having sex with two of Esptein’s victims. He denies it and is suing one of them, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, for libel, saying his sex life is ‘perfect.’ He admits he received a massage at Epstein’s home – but ‘kept my underwear on.’ Registered Democrat who spoke out against Trump’s election and again after the Charlottesville violence. Has become an outspoken defender of Trump against the Robert Mueller probe and the Ukraine investigation.     

Ken Starr, former Whitewater independent counsel

Famous and reviled in equal measure for his Whitewater investigation into Bill and Hillary Clinton’s finances in Arkansas which eventually led him to evidence of Bill’s affair with Monica Lewinsky. He was a federal appeals judge and George H.W. Bush’s solicitor general before that role. He later became president and chancellor of Baylor University in Waco but was removed as president in May 2016 for mishandling the investigation into allegations of multiple sexual assaults by football players and other students, then quit voluntarily as chancellor. Is the second Jeffrey Epstein defender on the team; he was present  in 2008 when the plea deal with prosecutor Alex Acosta was made which let Epstein off with just 13 months of work release prison.       

Pam Bondi, White House attorney

Florida’s first female attorney general and also a long-time TV attorney who has been a Fox News guest host – including co-hosting The Five for three days in a row while still attorney general. Began her career as a prosecutor before moving into elected politics. Has been hit by a series of controversies, among them persuading then Florida governor Rick Scott to change the date of an execution because it clashed with her re-election launch, and has come under fire for her association with Scientology. She has defended it saying the group were helping her efforts against human trafficking; at the time the FBI was investigating it over human trafficking. Went all-in on Trump in 2016, leading ‘lock her up’ chants at the 2016 Republican National Convention. Joined the White House last November to aid the anti-impeachment effort.

Robert Ray, Ken Starr’s successor

Headed the Office of the Independent Counsel from 1999 until it closed for business in 2002, meaning it was he, not Ken Starr, who wrote the final words on the scandals of the Clinton years. Those included the report on Monica Lewinsky, the report on the savings and loan misconduct claims which came to be known as Whitewater, and the report on Travelgate, the White House travel office’s firing and file-gate, claims of improper access to the FBI’s background reports. Struck deal with Clinton to give up his law license. Went into private practice. Was charged with stalking a former lover in New York in 2006 four months after she ended their relationship. Now a frequent presence on Fox News. 

Jane Raskin, private attorney

Part of a husband-and-wife Florida law team, she is a former prosecutor who specializes in defending in white collar crime cases. Their connection to Trump appears to have been through Ty Cobb, the former White House attorney. She and husband Martin advised Trump on his response to Mueller and appear to have been focused on avoiding an obstruction of justice accusation. That may be the reason to bring her in to the impeachment team; Democrats raised the specter of reviving Mueller’s report in their evidence to the impeachment trial.

Patrick Philbin and Michael Purpura, Deputy White House Counsels

Lowest-profile of the team, they work full-time for Cipollone in the White House. Philbin (left) was a George W. Bush appointee at the Department of Justice who helped come up with the system of trying Guantanamo Bay detainees in front of military commissions instead of in U.S. courts. He was one a group of officials, led by James Comey, who rushed to seriously-ill John Ashcroft’s bedside to stop the renewal of the warrant-less wiretap program. Unknown if Trump is aware of his links to Comey. Purpura (right) is also a Bush White House veteran who shaped its response to Congressional investigations at a time when there were calls for him to be impeached over going to war in Iraq. His name is on letters telling State Department employees not to testify. Has been named as a possible Trump nominee for federal court in Hawaii.

 



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Senators bend by wearing APPLE Watches…


The rules of decorum state that senators can’t use phones or electronic devices in the chamber during President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, but what about Apple Watches?

At least eight senators had them strapped on their wrists in the chamber at the start of the trial Tuesday, despite guidelines from Senate leadership that all electronics should be left in the cloakroom in the provided storage.

Republican Sens. Mike Lee of Utah,  John Thune of South Dakota, Jerry Moran of Kansas, John Barrasso of Wyoming, John Cornyn of Texas and Tim Scott of South Carolina all are wearing them on the floor. Also spotted with the smart watch: an aide to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.

So, too, are Democratic Sens. Michael Bennet of Colorado and Patty Murray of Washington. Virginia Democratic Sen. Mark Warner owns an Apple watch, but it could not be confirmed if he had it on the floor.

Newer versions of the Apple Watch can have cellular capabilities, which means wearers can leave their phones behind and “call from the trail, text from the surf, or stream music from the slopes,” the company says.

Or, possibly, call or text from the Senate floor as well.

The Supreme Court — the standard bearer for banning electronics from the courtroom — does not allow Apple Watches inside the courtroom.

Among other features of the latest version of the Apple Watch, it “motivates you to move, exercise and stand” — all things that the senators are not supposed to do during the trial. 

Todd Ruger contributed to this report.

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REPORT: Bezos' phone 'hacked by Saudi crown prince'…


The Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos had his mobile phone “hacked” in 2018 after receiving a WhatsApp message that had apparently been sent from the personal account of the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, sources have told the Guardian.

The encrypted message from the number used by Mohammed bin Salman is believed to have included a malicious file that infiltrated the phone of the world’s richest man, according to the results of a digital forensic analysis.

This analysis found it “highly probable” that the intrusion into the phone was triggered by an infected video file sent from the account of the Saudi heir to Bezos, the owner of the Washington Post.

The two men had been having a seemingly friendly WhatsApp exchange when, on 1 May of that year, the unsolicited file was sent, according to sources who spoke to the Guardian on the condition of anonymity.

Large amounts of data were exfiltrated from Bezos’s phone within hours, according to a person familiar with the matter. The Guardian has no knowledge of what was taken from the phone or how it was used.

The extraordinary revelation that the future king of Saudi Arabia may have had a personal involvement in the targeting of the American founder of Amazon will send shockwaves from Wall Street to Silicon Valley.

It could also undermine efforts by “MBS” – as the crown prince is known – to lure more western investors to Saudi Arabia, where he has vowed to economically transform the kingdom even as he has overseen a crackdown on his critics and rivals.

The disclosure is likely to raise difficult questions for the kingdom about the circumstances around how US tabloid the National Enquirer came to publish intimate details about Bezos’s private life – including text messages – nine months later.

It may also lead to renewed scrutiny about what the crown prince and his inner circle were doing in the months prior to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, the Washington Post journalist who was killed in October 2018 – five months after the alleged “hack” of the newspaper’s owner.

Mohammed bin Salman



Mohammed bin Salman. One observer said the alleged targeting of Bezos reflected the ‘personality-based’ environment in which the crown prince operates. Photograph: Bandar Aljaloud/Saudi royal court/EPA

Saudi Arabia has previously denied it targeted Bezos’s phone, and has insisted the murder of Khashoggi was the result of a “rogue operation”. In December, a Saudi court convicted eight people of involvement in the murder after a secret trial that was criticised as a sham by human rights experts.

Digital forensic experts started examining Bezos’s phone following the publication last January by the National Enquirer of intimate details about his private life.

The story, which included his involvement in an extramarital relationship, set off a race by his security team to uncover how the CEO’s private texts were obtained by the supermarket tabloid, which was owned by American Media Inc (AMI).

While AMI insisted it was tipped off about the affair by the estranged brother of Bezos’s girlfriend, the investigation by the billionaire’s own team found with “high confidence” that the Saudis had managed to “access” Bezos’s phone and had “gained private information” about him.

Bezos’s head of security, Gavin de Becker, wrote in the Daily Beast last March he had provided details of his investigation to law enforcement officials, but did not publicly reveal any information on how the Saudis accessed the phone.

He also described “the close relationship” the Saudi crown prince had developed with David Pecker, the chief executive of the company that owned the Enquirer, in the months before the Bezos story was published. De Becker did not respond to calls and messages from the Guardian.

The Guardian understands a forensic analysis of Bezos’s phone, and the indications that the “hack” began within an infected file from the crown prince’s account, has been reviewed by Agnès Callamard, the UN special rapporteur who investigates extrajudicial killings. It is understood that it is considered credible enough for investigators to be considering a formal approach to Saudi Arabia to ask for an explanation.

Callamard, whose own investigation into the murder of Khashoggi found “credible evidence” the crown prince and other senior Saudi officials were responsible for the killing, confirmed to the Guardian she was still pursuing “several leads” into the murder, but declined to comment on the alleged Bezos link.

When asked by the Guardian whether she would challenge Saudi Arabia about the new “hacking” allegation, Callamard said she followed all UN protocols that require investigators to alert governments about forthcoming public allegations.

Saudi experts – dissidents and analysts – told the Guardian they believed Bezos was probably targeted because of his ownership of the Post and its coverage of Saudi Arabia. Khashoggi’s critical columns about Mohammed bin Salman and his campaign of repression against activists and intellectuals rankled the crown prince and his inner circle.

Andrew Miller, a Middle East expert who served on the national security council under President Obama, said if Bezos had been targeted by the crown prince, it reflected the “personality-based” environment in which the crown prince operates.

“He probably believed that if he got something on Bezos it could shape coverage of Saudi Arabia in the Post. It is clear that the Saudis have no real boundaries or limits in terms of what they are prepared to do in order to protect and advance MBS, whether it is going after the head of one of the largest companies in the world or a dissident who is on their own.”

The possibility that the head of one of America’s leading companies was targeted by Saudi Arabia could pose a dilemma for the White House.

Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner have maintained close ties with the crown prince despite a US intelligence finding – reportedly with a medium–to–high degree of certainty – that Mohammed bin Salman ordered Khashoggi’s murder.

Both Saudi Arabia and AMI have denied that the kingdom was involved in the publication of the Bezos story.

A lawyer for Bezos who was contacted by the Guardian said: “I have no comment on this except to say that Mr Bezos is cooperating with investigations.”

The Guardian asked the Saudi embassy in Washington about the claims. It did not immediately return a request for comment.

Have you got new information about this story? You can message Guardian investigations using Signal or WhatsApp: +447584640566. For the most secure communications, use SecureDrop. You can also email: stephanie.kirchgaessner@theguardian.com.



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REPORT: Large Police Presence, 'Active Scene' In Front Of Antonio Brown's FL Home…


HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (KDKA) – There is reportedly a large police presence and “active scene” in front of Antonio Brown‘s home.

According to TMZ, a police source says Antonio Brown is not in custody at the time.

TMZ is also reporting two sources tell them it appears someone is injured.

According to ESPN’s Cameron Wolfe, the Hollywood Police are investigating Antonio Brown for possible battery at his home. Wolfe says police are still at his house as they try to determine if he’ll be charged.

Police are working to get a warrant for Brown’s arrest, TMZ reports. TMZ also adds the possible battery charge would be a felony and and there’s also a possible burglary charge.

The situation stems from an incident with a driver who works for a moving company, TMZ reports. They say that man has already been arrested.

According to CBS Miami, Hollywood police recently cut ties with Brown.

They reportedly said after being called to a domestic incident involving Brown — which was the third in their city in the past three months — they told him he’s no longer welcome as a benefactor and volunteer with the PAL youth football team.

A recent domestic dispute involved the mother of three of his children, Chelsie Kyriss.

According to reports, Kyriss was trying to pick the kids up to go to school Monday morning, when Antonio Brown accused Kyriss of trying to steal a Bentley from the property.

Kyriss was allegedly evicted from the house and was only allowed to be there to take the children. Reports say the police arrived, and Brown became irate when officers tried to get a good grasp on the situation. Brown recorded the incident on video, which was recovered by TMZ.

His agent Drew Rosenhaus also reportedly dropped him until Brown can seek counsel.

Stay with KDKA for the latest on this developing story.



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National Weather Service warns of falling iguanas…


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CNN u003ca href=”https://www.ktvq.com/” target=”_blank”>affiliate KTVQu003c/a> has the latest.”},{“title”:”WaPo: Trump’s lawyers, Senate allies work to prevent public Bolton testimony “,”duration”:”01:39″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/21/trump-lawyers-gop-senate-allies-work-privately-to-ensure-bolton-testimony-not-public-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/21/trump-lawyers-gop-senate-allies-work-privately-to-ensure-bolton-testimony-not-public-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190910121227-04-john-bolton-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/21/trump-lawyers-gop-senate-allies-work-privately-to-ensure-bolton-testimony-not-public-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”CNN’s u003ca href=”https://www.cnn.com/profiles/anderson-cooper-profile” target=”_blank”>Anderson Cooperu003c/a> speaks with a Washington Post writer about the report that President 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of violence that took place in nearby Charlottesville three years ago.”},{“title”:”Police: Man allegedly hit car intentionally, killing 3″,”duration”:”01:25″,”sourceName”:”KCAL/KCBS”,”sourceLink”:”https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/tag/kcal-9/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/us/2020/01/21/california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx.kcal-kcbs/index.xml”,”videoId”:”us/2020/01/21/california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx.kcal-kcbs”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120214443-california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx-00003119-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/us/2020/01/21/california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx.kcal-kcbs/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”A California man is facing murder charges after police say he intentionally rammed his vehicle into another, resulting in the death of three teenage boys, said California Highway Patrol Lt. David Yokley.”,”descriptionText”:”A California man is facing murder charges after police say he intentionally rammed his vehicle into another, resulting in the death of three teenage boys, said California Highway Patrol Lt. David Yokley.”},{“title”:”Joe Biden fires back at Bernie Sanders after video surfaces”,”duration”:”02:32″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/21/biden-feud-sanders-warren-ebof-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/21/biden-feud-sanders-warren-ebof-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120211236-sanders-biden-split-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/21/biden-feud-sanders-warren-ebof-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/profiles/jeff-zeleny-profile” target=”_blank”>CNN’s Jeff Zelenyu003c/a> reports on the “circular firing squad” of leading Democratic rivals unfolding on multiple fronts. “,”descriptionText”:”u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/profiles/jeff-zeleny-profile” target=”_blank”>CNN’s Jeff Zelenyu003c/a> reports on the “circular firing squad” of leading Democratic rivals unfolding on multiple fronts. “},{“title”:”See hail and dust storms batter southeastern Australia”,”duration”:”00:55″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:””,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/world/2020/01/20/australia-hail-dust-storm-lon-orig-tp.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”world/2020/01/20/australia-hail-dust-storm-lon-orig-tp.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120122203-02-australia-hailstorm-large-169.jpeg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/world/2020/01/20/australia-hail-dust-storm-lon-orig-tp.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Parts of southeastern Australia are being pelted by golf ball-sized hailstones — less than 24 hours after the region was hit by massive dust storms.”,”descriptionText”:”Parts of southeastern Australia are being pelted by golf ball-sized hailstones — less than 24 hours after the region was hit by massive dust storms.”},{“title”:”Schumer calls on 4 GOP members to ‘resist McConnell’s cover-up'”,”duration”:”02:26″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/21/schumer-mcconnell-impeachment-trial-rules-reaction-sot-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/21/schumer-mcconnell-impeachment-trial-rules-reaction-sot-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120195741-schumer-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/21/schumer-mcconnell-impeachment-trial-rules-reaction-sot-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer reacts to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s proposed impeachment trial rules. “,”descriptionText”:”Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer reacts to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s proposed impeachment trial rules. “},{“title”:”What the royal ‘deal’ will look like for Prince Harry and Meghan”,”duration”:”02:14″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://edition.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/world/2020/01/20/prince-harry-meghan-markle-sussex-queen-uk-royals-foster-pkg-intl-ldn-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”world/2020/01/20/prince-harry-meghan-markle-sussex-queen-uk-royals-foster-pkg-intl-ldn-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200112094829-prince-harry-meghan-queen-elizabeth-file-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/world/2020/01/20/prince-harry-meghan-markle-sussex-queen-uk-royals-foster-pkg-intl-ldn-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”The royal family have announced their ‘deal’ on the future of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Amongst other things, the couple will no longer be working members of the family and will stop using their HRH titles. CNN’s Max Foster reports.”,”descriptionText”:”The royal family have announced their ‘deal’ on the future of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Amongst other things, the couple will no longer be working members of the family and will stop using their HRH titles. CNN’s Max Foster reports.”},{“title”:”At least 1 person killed in Kansas City shooting”,”duration”:”00:40″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”http://www.cnn.com”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/us/2020/01/20/kansas-city-bar-shooting-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”us/2020/01/20/kansas-city-bar-shooting-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120043742-01-kansas-city-shooting-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/us/2020/01/20/kansas-city-bar-shooting-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Kansas City police believe a shooter opened fire on a group of people waiting in line to get into a bar and was stopped in the parking lot by an armed security guard, Kansas City Police Department Capt. David Jackson said.”,”descriptionText”:”Kansas City police believe a shooter opened fire on a group of people waiting in line to get into a bar and was stopped in the parking lot by an armed security guard, Kansas City Police Department Capt. David Jackson said.”},{“title”:”CNN poll: 51% think Trump should be convicted and removed”,”duration”:”02:23″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/?refresh=1″,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/20/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment-lead-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/20/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment-lead-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190318121348-01-trump-file-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/20/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment-lead-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”About half of Americans say the Senate should u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/2020/01/20/politics/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment/index.html” target=”_blank”>vote to convict President Donald Trump and remove him from officeu003c/a> in the upcoming impeachment trial (51%), according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS, while 45% say the Senate should vote against conviction and removal.”,”descriptionText”:”About half of Americans say the Senate should u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/2020/01/20/politics/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment/index.html” target=”_blank”>vote to convict President Donald Trump and remove him from officeu003c/a> in the upcoming impeachment trial (51%), according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS, while 45% say the Senate should vote against conviction and removal.”},{“title”:”Auschwitz survivors bear witness as anti-Semitic attacks rise”,”duration”:”03:36″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”http://www.cnn.com”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/world/2020/01/20/auschwitz-liberation-anniversary-melissa-bell-dnt-newday-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”world/2020/01/20/auschwitz-liberation-anniversary-melissa-bell-dnt-newday-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190110072842-01-auschwitz-file-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/world/2020/01/20/auschwitz-liberation-anniversary-melissa-bell-dnt-newday-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”CNN’s Melissa Bell speaks with Holocaust survivors for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.”,”descriptionText”:”CNN’s Melissa Bell speaks with Holocaust survivors for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.”},{“title”:”Pompeo says staffer presumed dead after boating accident”,”duration”:”01:02″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/20/us-mission-colombia-worker-missing-boating-accident-mike-pompeo-sot-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/20/us-mission-colombia-worker-missing-boating-accident-mike-pompeo-sot-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120113628-mike-pompeo-us-diplomatic-staffer-missing-colombia-01202020-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/20/us-mission-colombia-worker-missing-boating-accident-mike-pompeo-sot-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that an American staffer from the US Mission in Colombia is missing and presumed dead after a boating accident.”,”descriptionText”:”Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that an American staffer from the US Mission in Colombia is missing and presumed dead after a boating accident.”}],currentVideoCollectionId = ”,isLivePlayer = false,mediaMetadataCallbacks,mobilePinnedView = null,moveToNextTimeout,mutePlayerEnabled = false,nextVideoId = ”,nextVideoUrl = ”,turnOnFlashMessaging = false,videoPinner,videoEndSlateImpl;if (CNN.autoPlayVideoExist === false) {autoStartVideo = true;if (autoStartVideo === true) {if (turnOnFlashMessaging === true) {autoStartVideo = false;containerEl = jQuery(document.getElementById(configObj.markupId));CNN.VideoPlayer.showFlashSlate(containerEl);} else {CNN.autoPlayVideoExist = true;}}}configObj.autostart = CNN.Features.enableAutoplayBlock ? 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The virus has also been detected in some countries across Asia. “,”descriptionText”:”A new virus found in Wuhan, China, has killed a small number of people in the country. The virus has also been detected in some countries across Asia. “},{“title”:”Greta ignores Davos panel question to give warning”,”duration”:”01:38″,”sourceName”:”CNN Business”,”sourceLink”:””,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/business/2020/01/21/greta-climate-panel-speech-2020-davos-lon-orig.cnn-business/index.xml”,”videoId”:”business/2020/01/21/greta-climate-panel-speech-2020-davos-lon-orig.cnn-business”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200121025334-01-davos-2020-greta-thunberg-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/business/2020/01/21/greta-climate-panel-speech-2020-davos-lon-orig.cnn-business/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”During a panel hosted by TIME, Greta Thunberg issues a stark warning about the IPCC’s best case scenario for avoiding climate catastrophe.”,”descriptionText”:”During a panel hosted by TIME, Greta Thunberg issues a stark warning about the IPCC’s best case scenario for avoiding climate catastrophe.”},{“title”:”Missing teen’s body found near where she was last seen”,”duration”:”01:44″,”sourceName”:”KTVQ”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.ktvq.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/us/2020/01/21/missing-montana-teen-selina-not-afraid-found-dead-dnt-vpx.ktvq/index.xml”,”videoId”:”us/2020/01/21/missing-montana-teen-selina-not-afraid-found-dead-dnt-vpx.ktvq”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200121033750-selina-not-afraid-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/us/2020/01/21/missing-montana-teen-selina-not-afraid-found-dead-dnt-vpx.ktvq/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”The body of 16-year-old Selina Not Afraid, u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/2020/01/21/us/montana-missing-teen-found-dead/index.html” target=”_blank”>a Montana teen missing since New Year’s Dayu003c/a>, was found less than a mile from where she was last seen. CNN u003ca href=”https://www.ktvq.com/” target=”_blank”>affiliate KTVQu003c/a> has the latest.”,”descriptionText”:”The body of 16-year-old Selina Not Afraid, u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/2020/01/21/us/montana-missing-teen-found-dead/index.html” target=”_blank”>a Montana teen missing since New Year’s Dayu003c/a>, was found less than a mile from where she was last seen. CNN u003ca href=”https://www.ktvq.com/” target=”_blank”>affiliate KTVQu003c/a> has the latest.”},{“title”:”WaPo: Trump’s lawyers, Senate allies work to prevent public Bolton testimony “,”duration”:”01:39″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/21/trump-lawyers-gop-senate-allies-work-privately-to-ensure-bolton-testimony-not-public-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/21/trump-lawyers-gop-senate-allies-work-privately-to-ensure-bolton-testimony-not-public-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190910121227-04-john-bolton-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/21/trump-lawyers-gop-senate-allies-work-privately-to-ensure-bolton-testimony-not-public-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”CNN’s u003ca href=”https://www.cnn.com/profiles/anderson-cooper-profile” target=”_blank”>Anderson Cooperu003c/a> speaks with a Washington Post writer about the report that President Trump’s lawyers and GOP allies in the Senate are working to ensure that any testimony from former National Security Adviser John Bolton be kept private.”,”descriptionText”:”CNN’s u003ca href=”https://www.cnn.com/profiles/anderson-cooper-profile” target=”_blank”>Anderson Cooperu003c/a> speaks with a Washington Post writer about the report that President Trump’s lawyers and GOP allies in the Senate are working to ensure that any testimony from former National Security Adviser John Bolton be kept private.”},{“title”:”This may explain the spread of China’s new virus “,”duration”:”03:38″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://edition.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/world/2020/01/20/china-wuhan-origin-of-coronavirus-lu-stout-pkg-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”world/2020/01/20/china-wuhan-origin-of-coronavirus-lu-stout-pkg-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120144254-wuhan-virus-kristie-pkg2-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/world/2020/01/20/china-wuhan-origin-of-coronavirus-lu-stout-pkg-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Scientists have identified a new coronavirus, u003ca href=”https://edition.cnn.com/2020/01/19/asia/china-coronavirus-spike-intl-hnk/index.html” target=”_blank”>which has infected more than two hundred people u003c/a>since the initial outbreak in Wuhan, China. u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/profiles/kristie-lu-stout” target=”_blank”>CNN’s Kristie Lu Stoutu003c/a> reports on the origins of the mysterious SARS-like virus and the scientific race to control it.”,”descriptionText”:”Scientists have identified a new coronavirus, u003ca href=”https://edition.cnn.com/2020/01/19/asia/china-coronavirus-spike-intl-hnk/index.html” target=”_blank”>which has infected more than two hundred people u003c/a>since the initial outbreak in Wuhan, China. u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/profiles/kristie-lu-stout” target=”_blank”>CNN’s Kristie Lu Stoutu003c/a> reports on the origins of the mysterious SARS-like virus and the scientific race to control it.”},{“title”:”Thousands of gun rights advocates attend pro-gun rally “,”duration”:”02:55″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/us/2020/01/20/tight-security-thousands-people-pro-gun-rally-richmond-virginia-sidner-lklv-nr-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”us/2020/01/20/tight-security-thousands-people-pro-gun-rally-richmond-virginia-sidner-lklv-nr-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120082206-01-virginia-pro-gun-rally-0120-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/us/2020/01/20/tight-security-thousands-people-pro-gun-rally-richmond-virginia-sidner-lklv-nr-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Thousands of gun-rights advocates kicked off a gun-rights rally in Richmond, Virginia, amid heavy security as authorities look to prevent the kind of violence that took place in nearby Charlottesville three years ago.”,”descriptionText”:”Thousands of gun-rights advocates kicked off a gun-rights rally in Richmond, Virginia, amid heavy security as authorities look to prevent the kind of violence that took place in nearby Charlottesville three years ago.”},{“title”:”Police: Man allegedly hit car intentionally, killing 3″,”duration”:”01:25″,”sourceName”:”KCAL/KCBS”,”sourceLink”:”https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/tag/kcal-9/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/us/2020/01/21/california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx.kcal-kcbs/index.xml”,”videoId”:”us/2020/01/21/california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx.kcal-kcbs”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120214443-california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx-00003119-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/us/2020/01/21/california-intentional-car-crash-presser-bts-vpx.kcal-kcbs/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”A California man is facing murder charges after police say he intentionally rammed his vehicle into another, resulting in the death of three teenage boys, said California Highway Patrol Lt. David Yokley.”,”descriptionText”:”A California man is facing murder charges after police say he intentionally rammed his vehicle into another, resulting in the death of three teenage boys, said California Highway Patrol Lt. David Yokley.”},{“title”:”Joe Biden fires back at Bernie Sanders after video surfaces”,”duration”:”02:32″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/21/biden-feud-sanders-warren-ebof-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/21/biden-feud-sanders-warren-ebof-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120211236-sanders-biden-split-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/21/biden-feud-sanders-warren-ebof-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/profiles/jeff-zeleny-profile” target=”_blank”>CNN’s Jeff Zelenyu003c/a> reports on the “circular firing squad” of leading Democratic rivals unfolding on multiple fronts. “,”descriptionText”:”u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/profiles/jeff-zeleny-profile” target=”_blank”>CNN’s Jeff Zelenyu003c/a> reports on the “circular firing squad” of leading Democratic rivals unfolding on multiple fronts. “},{“title”:”See hail and dust storms batter southeastern Australia”,”duration”:”00:55″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:””,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/world/2020/01/20/australia-hail-dust-storm-lon-orig-tp.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”world/2020/01/20/australia-hail-dust-storm-lon-orig-tp.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120122203-02-australia-hailstorm-large-169.jpeg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/world/2020/01/20/australia-hail-dust-storm-lon-orig-tp.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Parts of southeastern Australia are being pelted by golf ball-sized hailstones — less than 24 hours after the region was hit by massive dust storms.”,”descriptionText”:”Parts of southeastern Australia are being pelted by golf ball-sized hailstones — less than 24 hours after the region was hit by massive dust storms.”},{“title”:”Schumer calls on 4 GOP members to ‘resist McConnell’s cover-up'”,”duration”:”02:26″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/21/schumer-mcconnell-impeachment-trial-rules-reaction-sot-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/21/schumer-mcconnell-impeachment-trial-rules-reaction-sot-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120195741-schumer-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/21/schumer-mcconnell-impeachment-trial-rules-reaction-sot-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer reacts to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s proposed impeachment trial rules. “,”descriptionText”:”Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer reacts to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s proposed impeachment trial rules. “},{“title”:”What the royal ‘deal’ will look like for Prince Harry and Meghan”,”duration”:”02:14″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://edition.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/world/2020/01/20/prince-harry-meghan-markle-sussex-queen-uk-royals-foster-pkg-intl-ldn-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”world/2020/01/20/prince-harry-meghan-markle-sussex-queen-uk-royals-foster-pkg-intl-ldn-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200112094829-prince-harry-meghan-queen-elizabeth-file-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/world/2020/01/20/prince-harry-meghan-markle-sussex-queen-uk-royals-foster-pkg-intl-ldn-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”The royal family have announced their ‘deal’ on the future of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Amongst other things, the couple will no longer be working members of the family and will stop using their HRH titles. CNN’s Max Foster reports.”,”descriptionText”:”The royal family have announced their ‘deal’ on the future of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Amongst other things, the couple will no longer be working members of the family and will stop using their HRH titles. CNN’s Max Foster reports.”},{“title”:”At least 1 person killed in Kansas City shooting”,”duration”:”00:40″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”http://www.cnn.com”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/us/2020/01/20/kansas-city-bar-shooting-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”us/2020/01/20/kansas-city-bar-shooting-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120043742-01-kansas-city-shooting-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/us/2020/01/20/kansas-city-bar-shooting-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Kansas City police believe a shooter opened fire on a group of people waiting in line to get into a bar and was stopped in the parking lot by an armed security guard, Kansas City Police Department Capt. David Jackson said.”,”descriptionText”:”Kansas City police believe a shooter opened fire on a group of people waiting in line to get into a bar and was stopped in the parking lot by an armed security guard, Kansas City Police Department Capt. David Jackson said.”},{“title”:”CNN poll: 51% think Trump should be convicted and removed”,”duration”:”02:23″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/?refresh=1″,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/20/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment-lead-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/20/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment-lead-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190318121348-01-trump-file-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/20/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment-lead-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”About half of Americans say the Senate should u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/2020/01/20/politics/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment/index.html” target=”_blank”>vote to convict President Donald Trump and remove him from officeu003c/a> in the upcoming impeachment trial (51%), according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS, while 45% say the Senate should vote against conviction and removal.”,”descriptionText”:”About half of Americans say the Senate should u003ca href=”http://www.cnn.com/2020/01/20/politics/cnn-poll-trump-impeachment/index.html” target=”_blank”>vote to convict President Donald Trump and remove him from officeu003c/a> in the upcoming impeachment trial (51%), according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS, while 45% say the Senate should vote against conviction and removal.”},{“title”:”Auschwitz survivors bear witness as anti-Semitic attacks rise”,”duration”:”03:36″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”http://www.cnn.com”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/world/2020/01/20/auschwitz-liberation-anniversary-melissa-bell-dnt-newday-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”world/2020/01/20/auschwitz-liberation-anniversary-melissa-bell-dnt-newday-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190110072842-01-auschwitz-file-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/world/2020/01/20/auschwitz-liberation-anniversary-melissa-bell-dnt-newday-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”CNN’s Melissa Bell speaks with Holocaust survivors for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.”,”descriptionText”:”CNN’s Melissa Bell speaks with Holocaust survivors for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.”},{“title”:”Pompeo says staffer presumed dead after boating accident”,”duration”:”01:02″,”sourceName”:”CNN”,”sourceLink”:”https://www.cnn.com/”,”videoCMSUrl”:”/video/data/3.0/video/politics/2020/01/20/us-mission-colombia-worker-missing-boating-accident-mike-pompeo-sot-vpx.cnn/index.xml”,”videoId”:”politics/2020/01/20/us-mission-colombia-worker-missing-boating-accident-mike-pompeo-sot-vpx.cnn”,”videoImage”:”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/200120113628-mike-pompeo-us-diplomatic-staffer-missing-colombia-01202020-large-169.jpg”,”videoUrl”:”/videos/politics/2020/01/20/us-mission-colombia-worker-missing-boating-accident-mike-pompeo-sot-vpx.cnn/video/playlists/top-news-videos/”,”description”:”Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that an American staffer from the US Mission in Colombia is missing and presumed dead after a boating accident.”,”descriptionText”:”Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that an American staffer from the US Mission in Colombia is missing and presumed dead after a boating accident.”}],’js-video_headline-featured-1ypifhq’,”,”js-video_source-featured-1ypifhq”,true,true,’top-news-videos’);if (typeof configObj.context !== ‘string’ || configObj.context.length



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