Friday, January 17, 2020

Senate Opens Impeachment Trial Against President Trump: Chief Justice John Roberts Sworn In

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts was sworn in Thursday to preside over the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
Roberts, wearing his black judicial robe, was escorted into the chamber by four senators. The two Republicans were Sens. Roy Blunt of Missouri, the chairman of the Rules Committee, and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee. The Democrats were Sens. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., the longest-serving senator, and Dianne Feinstein of California, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee.
“Senators, I attend the Senate in conformity with your notice for the purpose of joining with you for the trial of the president of the United States," Roberts said. “I am now prepared to take the oath."
The longest-serving Republican, Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, administered the oath to Roberts. "God bless you," Grassley said. "Thank you," Roberts replied.
A roll call of senators sitting at their mahogany desks was held before Roberts arrived. After he was sworn in, Roberts recited the trial oath to swear in senators, who stood at their desks and raised their right hands.
"Do you solemnly swear that in all things appertaining to the trial of the impeachment of Donald John Trump, president of the United States now pending, you will do impartial justice, according to the Constitution and laws, so help you God?" Roberts asked.
"I do," senators replied in unison. Senators were called in alphabetical order by their last names to sign the oath book.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., recited unanimous agreements setting deadlines for trial documents. The House has until 5 p.m. Saturday to file its trial brief, the White House until noon Monday to file its trial brief, and the House until noon Tuesday to file its rebuttal.
"The Senate sitting as court of impeachment is adjourned until Tuesday Jan. 21 at 1 p.m.," Roberts said, gaveling the session closed.
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