Stories by Alayna Treene

Inside Democrats' Week 2 impeachment strategy

Adam Schiff hears from staff members at an impeachment hearing
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff hears from staff members during a break in Friday's impeachment hearing. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Democrats are approaching Week 2 of impeachment hearings with one key goal: show more of President Trump's direct involvement in the scheme to tie Ukrainian aid to an investigation of Joe Biden's son.

What to watch: Of the eight officials testifying next week, the one with the most known direct interactions with Trump is EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland. The Trump megadonor already had to amend his testimony once. He may be the most legally vulnerable, and he has spoken with Trump about the investigations.

Inside Republicans' defense strategy for Week 2 of impeachment hearings

Jim Jordan with Republican counsel Steve Castor
Republican counsel Steve Castor listens to Rep. Jim Jordan. Photo: Joshua Roberts - Pool/Getty Images

Republicans' goal this week is to create as much distance as possible between President Trump and the witnesses and make the case that Trump himself never specifically ordered a halt on aid to Ukraine with the intention of forcing a political investigation.

Behind the scenes: Republicans think Trump's former special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker and former NSC official Tim Morrison will be their star witnesses, though some are griping that Schiff has tucked their hearing into Tuesday afternoon, Republican officials working on impeachment tell Axios.

Inside the room for the first day of Trump impeachment hearings

George Kent (left) and Bill Taylor (right) swearing an oath.
Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Several of the seats reserved for members of Congress who aren't on the Intelligence Committee were vacant — and more Republicans than Democrats sat in the Ways and Means hearing room that hosted yesterday's impeachment hearing.

The big picture: C-SPAN's cameras only captured the main action, failing to capture the scope of the room and how those in the audience reacted during the marathon hearing.