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Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) introduced a resolution in the Senate Thursday condemning the impeachment inquiry into President Trump, calling on the House to vote to open a formal inquiry and provide Trump with "fundamental constitutional protections."

"If you can drive down a president's poll numbers by having proceedings where you selectively leak information, where the president who's the subject of all this is pretty much shut out, God help future presidents."
— Graham to reporters

The big picture: The Trump administration has said they will not cooperate with the inquiry because it is "unconstitutional," arguing that the president has been denied his due process rights. Republicans have also alleged a lack of transparency in the impeachment process, staging a protest that delayed one of the House's witness depositions on Wednesday. The resolution calls for Republicans to be granted equal subpoena power in all proceedings.

  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell worked with Graham to ensure the resolution's language was palatable to the Republican conference, according to a Senate aide.
  • 44 Republican senators have signed onto the resolutions, according to Graham.

What they're saying:

"The House of Representatives is abandoning more than a century’s worth of precedent and tradition in impeachment proceedings and denying President Trump basic fairness and due process accorded every American."

Between the lines: Axios' Jonathan Swan notes that influential figures in the Trump base, including Donald Trump Jr., have pressured Graham to take more action as Senate Judiciary chairman to combat House Democrats on impeachment.

  • A source close to Trump Jr. told Swan: "If you’re going to talk the talk on Fox, you better walk the walk in the chamber. And a resolution is just talk. People expect action."
  • Asked by reporters if he's being pressured by the White House to launch investigations, Graham said: "Yeah, I’ve been asked to call some people to the committee. That makes no sense to me. ... I’m going to do it the way I want to do it. I’m not going to turn the Senate into a circus."

What to watch: The resolution could force some vulnerable Senate Republicans who have wavered on impeachment and Trump's calls for foreign powers to investigate his political opponents to go on the record.

Read the resolution

Go deeper: How an impeachment inquiry works

Go deeper

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
2 hours ago - Science

All-civilian Inspiration4 is back on Earth after flight to space

A side-by-side of the Inspiration4 crew and a shot of their capsule on the way back to Earth. Photo: SpaceX

The all-civilian Inspiration4 crew is back on Earth after their three-day mission in orbit.

The big picture: The launch and landing of this fully amateur, private space crew marks a changing of the guard from spaceflight being a largely government-led venture to being under the purview of private companies.

28 U.S. citizens depart Afghanistan on Qatar Airways flight

Passengers board a Qatar Airways aircraft bound to Qatar at the airport in Kabul on September 10, 2021. Photo: Aamir Qureshi/AFP via Getty Images

The State Department on Saturday confirmed that a Qatar Airways charter flight left Kabul on Friday with 28 U.S. citizens and seven lawful permanent residents on board.

The big picture: Friday's flight is the third such airlift by Qatar Airways since the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan, AP reports.

Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Smaller than expected "Justice for J6" rally met with large police presence

Police officers watch as demonstrators gather for the "Justice for J6" rally in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 18, 2021. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

A few hundred demonstrators were met by a heavy law enforcement presence on Saturday at the "Justice for J6" rally outside the fenced-off U.S. Capitol, AP reports.

The latest: Four people were arrested at the rally, including one person with a gun, one with a knife and two with outstanding warrants, per the U.S. Capitol Police.