Shortly after the House impeached Trump Wednesday night, Pelosi refused to commit to sending McConnell the articles charging abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, arguing that Democrats “haven’t seen anything that looks fair to us.”
But McConnell seemed unmoved by her threat.
“It’s like the prosecutors are getting cold feet in front of the entire country and second-guessing whether they even want to go to trial,” McConnell said in a 30-minute floor speech on Thursday morning. “They said impeachment was so urgent that it could not even wait for due process but now they’re content to sit on their hands. It is comical.”
Some liberals have argued that Pelosi has leverage over McConnell, arguing she can withhold sending impeachment managers to the Senate to pressure him into negotiating with Schumer.
Schumer says his letter to McConnell asking for administration witnesses was merely a response to McConnell’s public statements about working with Trump and his repeated predictions that the Senate would acquit him. He asserted on Thursday that “Democrats want a fair trial” and that McConnell currently “has no intention of conducting a fair trial.”
But both leaders are preparing to finally square off on the matter.
“Look, I will always be open and I’m not going to let anything personal get in the way,” Schumer said in an interview on Tuesday. “If he asks, I’ll be there in a half hour. He has not asked to meet with me.”
With a simple majority and the GOP controls 53 seats, although a number of Republicans like Susan Collins of Maine want McConnell and Schumer to work out a deal rather than see the GOP majority steamroll Democrats.