Impeachment charges now in the hands of the U.S. Senate, lawmakers debate witnesses

TOPSHOT - The US Capitol is seen in Washington, DC on January 22, 2018 after the US Senate reached a deal to reopen the federal government, with Democrats accepting a compromise spending bill. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON D.C.  — The impeachment of President Donald Trump is now in the hands of the U.S. Senate.

The House of Representatives voted to send those articles over earlier today. That action triggers a Senate trial to determine whether the President is removed from office.

With that, Democrats want the process to be impartial.

“I hope to see a fair trial, and I hope we get to the point that we have witnesses,” Rep. Robin Kelly, D-Ill., said.

The major sticking point between parties remains whether to call witnesses in the trial. Indiana Republican Congressman Jim Banks warned Democrats to be careful what they wish for.

“Mitch McConnell, other Republican leaders have already said, if the Democrats call witnesses, the Republicans will call witnesses too, and that would likely include Hunter Biden, Adam Schiff and others who have drug this country through the mud,” Banks said.

Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, said that, in the end, Senators won’t have a choice.

“The American people are learning more and more about this, and I think the Senate is going to end up caving, and they’re going to have to allow witnesses to testify,” Ryan said.

That would be fine for Indiana Republican Senator Mike Braun, he said.

“All along, I’ve said I was OK with that, as long as it’s reciprocal,” Braun said.

President Trump said his first choice would be to have the Senate simply dismiss the Articles of Impeachment, but Republicans are not backing that plan.

“It needs to go through the proper procedures, have the trial and listen to both sides,” Braun said.

The trial’s expected starting day is Tuesday. It could take anywhere from a few weeks to more than a month to complete.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.