DC- On Thursday, with a pounding of his wooden gavel, Chief Justice John Roberts officially kick started the first phase of President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial. In a shocking turn of events, all 100 Senators recused themselves from being sworn in.
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told reporters afterward:
“Chief Justice Roberts asked me to take an oath of impartiality, and, knowing my heart, my conscience, and the gravity of the moment, could not in good faith solemnly swear to be impartial… because I’m not. I did what I thought was best for the country, just like the rest of my colleagues.”
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, told CNN Host Chris Cuomo on his prime time show last night, “Look, it’s one thing to be deceptive on television, or even on the Senate floor, during the course of ‘normal,’ events, but this is something different. I didn’t take an oath to be honest or impartial before I sat in this chair to speak with you, but Chief Justice Roberts made the request. You can’t lie to the Supreme Court, it is hallow ground. I see the Chief Justice as an extension of that. I had no choice but to recuse myself, nor did any of my colleagues. ”
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) had a similar view in a statement he posted to Shitter:
“When forced to take an oath of impartiality, I felt like I didn’t have many options. I could either lie to the head of the Supreme Court, or I could recuse myself. I’ve spoken with Chief Roberts on numerous occasions, and his bullshit detector is unmatched. Had I taken that oath, there would be a good chance that I’d find myself in a jail cell before all was said and done.”
Senator Susan Collins (R-MA), sighted the long term effects of involving herself in Culture Wars for her recusal:
“I fell on the Brett Kavanaugh sword for this administration, and it has gained me nothing. My centrist image has been irreparably tarnished, and for the first time in my career, I feel very uncertain about my election prospects this year, and in the future. I’m done with these Culture Wars and purity tests. I’ll defer to the opinions of the Chief Justice and let him decide. I’m sitting this one out.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) was jubilant after his recusal, “My only concern is preserving the majority in the Senate. If the President wants to defend himself, more power to him. This situation has gotten out of hand, and we can’t keep pretending that we’re concerned about rule of law. Now is the time to let The Rule Of Law decide. I trust the judgement of the Chief Justice. I’m sure he will make the RIGHT decision. Now, no one in the Republican Party will be forced to stand behind this President.”
Senator Bernie Sander (I-VT), in a YouTube video to his followers, seemed visibly annoyed, confessing, “This came straight from Perez over at the DNC. He advised all the Presidential Candidates to recuse themselves. We can’t have Mayor Pete and all of those Billionaires out there campaigning while we’re sitting through a trial. Under no circumstances can we allow these guys to be on the stump while we’re bogged down with our Senate duties. I don’t like it, but it’s a very shrewd strategy.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), shared Bernie’s sentiment:
“There’s nothing I’d rather do than vote to Impeach the President, but the DNC made a very good point. We can’t let the Billionaires and the Moderates have free reign with their campaigns, while those of us with Jobs are forced to stay in Washington. It pains me to step aside, but, we’re trying to make history here.”
At the conclusion of the day, Chief Justice Roberts spoke with reporters from the steps of the Senate building. “Sure, I was surprised when all of them recused themselves, but I think it’s for the best. Remember, the Supreme Court is the only branch of the government that has a positive net favor-ability rating, and I think that speaks volumes. Now that I can determine the rules, we will open the court to as many journalist as the Senate floor can hold. All Senators that have recused themselves will be forced to watch the proceedings from somewhere else. I will be calling witnesses to the stand, how many, and whom, will be determined as the trial proceeds. I look forward to the opportunity to hear the evidence, and make a judgement on behalf of all Americans. I commend the members of the Senate for their sound Judgement.”
The Impeachment trial of Donald Trump is expected to begin on Monday morning. This story is ongoing… more information will be provided as further details emerge.