Moscow Mitch McConnell is already figuring out how quickly he can dismiss an impeachment of Donald Trump from the House. He wants "a speedy impeachment trial that concludes before the end of the year," and that's the message he’s sending House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
On Wednesday, McConnell said he expects the House to approve articles of impeachment as early as Thanksgiving. Politico reported, "McConnell then surmised that the Senate could deal with the trial by Christmas, concluding the impeachment proceedings before the Democratic presidential primaries begin." That's, of course, without any agreement from or even discussion with Pelosi. But Republican senators in the meeting said that "[McConnell] thinks Democrats are of the same mind: let’s not drag this out for five weeks."
McConnell also has had "zero" discussions with Senate Democrats, Sen. Chuck Schumer said. "I'm not urging him to do it immediately,” Schumer told reporters on Wednesday, saying that Democrats want it done in "a fair and bipartisan way and I hope that Leader McConnell would obey those strictures." Meanwhile, Republican senators on Wednesday "asked how they can force a vote to dismiss the trial."
That's McConnell's attempt to drive this process. For her part, at her weekly press conference on Thursday, Pelosi said, "I have no idea" about the timeline at this point. "The timeline will depend on the truth-line, and that's what we're looking for." Chances are that that timeline got pushed out just a tiny bit longer with Mick Mulvaney's full confession of the Ukraine scheme on Thursday. That's one more witness to tangle with.
Whatever McConnell wants, there's going to be a mound of evidence that will play out for as long as it takes and make it harder and harder for his vulnerable conference to dismiss.
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