As soon as I looked up from punching "Publish" on this morning's election post, I saw BREAKING: McConnell Reportedly Tells Colleagues How He’ll Vote In Trump Trial; UPDATE: “Jurisdiction”; UPDATE: Dems Now Want Witnesses at Hot Air and "While a close call, I am persuaded that impeachments are a tool primarily of removal and we therefore lack jurisdiction." and at Althouse,
"The Constitution makes perfectly clear that presidential criminal misconduct while in office can be prosecuted after the president has left office, which in my view alleviates the otherwise troubling 'January exception' argument raised by the House."Wrote Mitch McConnell, quoted in "Hours before the verdict, McConnell tells Republicans he plans to vote to acquit Trump, calling it ‘a close call’" (NYT).
To say "close call" is to hedge his political bet. To rely on the jurisdictional ground avoids the question on the merits. Who knows if he'd consider that a "close call" too?
The NYT seems to know, because it has this:The leader had let it be known that he believed Mr. Trump committed impeachable offenses and told advisers and colleagues he was open to conviction as the best way of purging Mr. Trump from the Republican Party. He even said publicly that Mr. Trump had “provoked the attack.”
Shortly there after, it was revealed that after hearing from the Trump defense, the Senate Democrats walked back their demand for witnesses. I wonder who they threatened to call? At Da Hill, Senate strikes deal, bypassing calling impeachment witnesses, and at Da Wire, UPDATED: Chaos In The Senate As Lawmakers Vote To Hear Witnesses In Trump Trial, Then Strike Deal To Avoid ""I’m gonna' slap subpoenas on a good number of people." -- Trump lawyer"
Moments ago on Fox I saw that Trump had been acquitted, 43-57, with only Richard Burr of Virginia being added to the ranks of Republicans voting against the President after the most recent vote to challenge the constitutionality of the post-presidential conviction. Burr is retiring at the end of his term and apparently felt free to display his well known animus against Trump.
As usual, you can find the live feed at Sundance, Senate Impeachment Trial for Insurrection – Day Five, 10:00am Livestream (which will turn into an archive of the proceeding).
Linked at Pirate's Cove in the weekly Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup and linkfest.