WASHINGTON — The chief justice of the United States arrived Thursday at the U.S. Senate to preside over President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, ready to swear in all 100 senators with an oath to ensure “impartial justice” as jurors for only the third such proceeding in American. history.
Chief Justice John Roberts made the short trip across the street from the Supreme Court before being ushered to the Senate chamber. He was to be sworn in himself before administering the oath it to the senators.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his annual news conference Thursday that US President Donald Trump’s impeachment was based on “made-up reasons,” and expressed doubts that Trump will be removed from power.
“Regarding the continuation of our dialogue till the end of Trump’s presidency, you make it sound as if it’s already coming to an end,” Putin said answering a question about whether Russia has a strategy for continuing the dialogue with the US until the end of Trump’s presidency.
“I actually really doubt that it is ending, it still has to go through Senate where as far as I know the Republicans hold the majority so it’s unlikely they will want to remove the representative of their party for some made-up reasons.”
Putin added on Thursday: “This is just the continuation of the internal political battle, one party that lost the elections, the Democrats, and are now trying to find new ways by accusing Trump of collusion with Russia. But then it turns out there was no collusion, this can’t be the basis for the impeachment. Now they came up with some pressure on Ukraine, I don’t know what is the [pressure] but this is up to your congressmen.”
The question was asked by Dmitry Simes, head of the Washington-based think tank Center for the National Interest, mentioned in the Mueller report for providing advice to Trump’s campaign on Russia.
President Donald Trump attacked his security people as they dragged protesters out of his Michigan rally on Wednesday. Protesters flashed middle fingers as well as a giant banner reading, “Don the Con — you’re fired.”
“She’ll catch hell when she gets back home with mom,” Trump said. “You know, she screams a little bit and you know what I like to do to avoid them. Because I’ll tell you the big problem, I can hardly hear her. What happens is all of you people go, ‘Look, look, look.’ And the place — so there’s one disgusting person who made — wait, wait — who, I wouldn’t say this, but who made a horrible gesture with the wrong finger, right? Now, they won’t say that, the fake news media. They won’t say it. If one of us did that it would be like the biggest story ever.”
For the third time in history, the House has voted to impeach the president of the United States.
On Wednesday night, the House voted to pass its first of two articles of impeachment brought against President Donald Trump — one charging the president with abusing his power. The second article the House will vote on shortly accuses Trump of obstructing Congress. Both are tied to the Ukraine scandal and Trump’s urging of the Ukrainian president to investigate his political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, and his son, Hunter.