Schumer Details Needs For Senate Impeachment Trial | NBC News (Live Stream Recording)

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Published: 12/23/2019 09:48 PM

Watch live coverage as Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. holds a press conference to discuss what he believes is required to conduct a fair Senate impeachment trial for President Trump. » Subscribe to NBC News: » Watch more NBC video:

Say when you're ready everyone, okay, okay! First! Thank you all for coming and a merry christmas, happy holiday, happy, hanukkah, happy, kwanzaa, happy everything to everyone. I hope you all have a good holiday season with your families and i hope you don't have to work on christmas day. Now more than a week ago, i sent a letter to senator mcconnell out light. Sorry, more than a week ago, i sent ...
letter to senator mcconnell outlining a proposed structure for a fair and honest impeachment trial in the senate. Nothing dilatory, nothing prolonged, but what jo friday said on dragnet, just the facts. Ma'Am president trump has said he wants due process. Well, our proposal gives itto him. The tradition of due process is that when you are accused, you get to confront your accuser and make your case. We urge president trump to do that through documents and witnesses. We have said from the beginning that there are two components that are necessary for a full and fair trial. First, the senate should hear testimony under oath from four key witnesses, all of whom would have eyewitness direct knowledge of what happened in relation to these charges. They should include michael duffy, the associate director for national security at the office of management and budget and second, and just as importantly, the senate should issue subpoenas for a limited set of documents that we believewill shed additional light on the administration's decision-making regarding the delay in Security assistance funding to ukraine and it's requests for certain investigations to be announced by the government of ukraine.

The need for the senate to review documentary evidence has received far less attention than the need for witness testimony. Despite being an equally important aspect of the trial and getting the facts to come out, we don't know what these documents will say. Just as we don't know what the witnesses will say, they may actually be exculpatory of president trump or they may be further condemning a president trump, but they should come out. We should see these documents, no matter what they say today. I senta letter to all my senate colleagues, ninety nine of them every democrat, every republican detailing the specific documents were requesting. The documents can be broken down into three evidentiary categories. First, documents related to the effort to induce and pressure ukraine to announce certain political investigations. Second, documents related to the order to hold and later release military assistance to ukraine and third documents related to the withholding of a white house meeting. That was desperately sought by the newly elected president of ukraine and it's hard to overstate how important this meeting was to president zalenski it's hard to overstate how withholding it was so harmful to him and could have been used as a lever. It'S especiallyastonishing, the president trump has hosted russian officials below the level of the president in the oval office, but withhold such a meeting with the ukrainian president. Why ukraine's our ally, russia's our adversary, with holding a meeting from one of our allies, while welcoming our adversaries with such open arms, sends a stunning message to the world, especially putin, and raises many many questions. The emails and documents we are requesting are necessary to get to the bottom of it why this happened? Why secondary russian officials got meetings with president trump and zalenski was denied one? Let me be clear: our request for documents is not a new demand, nor would it create a time-consuming document.

Production efforti think most of america wants to see all the facts come out, but not in a dilatory way. We have it. We have a slogan in america. That'S at the core of our justice: it's called speedy and a speedy and fair trial. That is just what we want. We don't want a dilatory, but we want it fair and fair means documents witnesses it's hard to imagine a trial, not having documents and witnesses if it doesn't have documents and witnesses. It'S going to seem to most of the american people that it is a sham trial. A show trial not to get at the facts. It'S simply about getting the truth. Senator mcconnell has come up withno good reason. While the trial shouldn't have these witnesses there documents he does a lot of name-calling. He does a lot of partisanship.

He does a lot of digging back in past history and misstating the case, but he still hasn't answered the question. What is wrong with witnesses? What is wrong with documents? One argument, leader mcconnell, give us one argument why they shouldn't be part of the trial. We had asked for mr. duffy to come as a witness before the stunning explosive new information was released about president trump's effort to freeze military aid to ukraine and the documents that doug duffy had sent. These have only what happened over the weekend with duffy's emails. Thatwere made public has only bolstered the case that documents should be produced and witnesses testify. The white house press secretary says duffy's. Memo meant nothing then released the documents surrounding it. Now, new emails from top trump officials were released, as you know, including one that was sent 91 minutes after president trump's july 25th. Call with ukrainian president zalenski, in which president trump asked for a favor in the email, the top trump administration official michael duffy, ordered the military assistance to ukraine be withheld and he demanded the order be kept hush-hush. Why? If everything was on the up-and-up? If the call was perfect, as president trump said, why does one of his top aides, who's apolitical appointee say, let's keep it hush-hush the new emails for mr. duffy and the trump administration show why it's so important for the white house to produce the documents we have Requested they will shed light on who ordered the aide cut and why they ordered it.

If there was an ever an argument that we mean need mr. duffy and others to come, testify under oath and an argument that we need documents related to what was revealed about. Mr. duffy's actions, this is it so we say to president trump. If you are so confident, you did nothing wrong. Why won't you let your men testify if you did nothing wrong. Mr. president, why do you seemso eager to avoid the truth, to hide the truth and why leader mcconnell? If you want the truth and you want a fair trial, whether you're a partisan or not, are you withholding so far, including today, leader mcconnell has not come up with a single reason why we shouldn't have witnesses and documents? He does a lot of name-calling. He does a lot of finger-pointing, but he hasn't given a single reason why there shouldn't be documents and witnesses, so we say to mr. president: you say to president trump release the emails. Let your aides testify. We say to leader mcconnell a fair trial with the facts.

Only the facts ready for you, questions, witnesses and documentsare the main argument here we must decide them and hopefully we can decide them in a bipartisan way before going forward with the trial leader, mcconnell has said: let's go forward with the trial and then we'll decide documents. Nothing would prevent him from moving from having the arguments made by each council. Will there'll be nothing new and then dismissing the whole case. We'Re not gon na stand for that. We at the very minimum will require votes from all the senators on each of the witnesses and about each of these sets of documents. And i don't think my colleagues, democrat or republican are the one of going to want to vote to withhold evidence in such animportant trial. Why do you think senator mcconnell doesn't want to present documents and the other thing he said today? Look the bottom line is he can do all the name-calling he wants give an answer to why we shouldn't have witnesses and documents and he hasn't given a good answer plain and simple until he does he's not going to be able to escape the fact that he Is probably - and president trump is probably not certainly, but it seems to the average person they're hiding the truth, they're afraid of the truth, he's afraid of the truth, he's hiding the truth. Any other questions. Thank you, everybody again, a good holiday to you all. You, you.

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