Jan 6, 2020

Impeachment sneak peek: Hawley's plan for dismissal

Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), a freshman and former state attorney general who's a 2024 presidential prospect, today will file his plan to allow dismissal of the articles of impeachment if House Democrats withhold them from the Senate.

Hawley tweeted last week: "Dems said impeachment was URGENT. Now they don’t want to have a trial ... In real world, if prosecution doesn’t proceed with case, it gets dismissed. So on Monday, I will introduce measure to dismiss this bogus impeachment for lack of prosecution."

The plan: "Senator Hawley’s resolution would amend the Senate’s impeachment rules to ... protect the Senate’s sole power to try impeachment."

  • "The resolution would allow the Senate to dismiss for lack of prosecution any articles of impeachment that the House of Representatives has delayed transmitting for 25 calendar days or more."
  • "Under this new rule, any senator would be entitled to move to dismiss once the allotted time period had elapsed. Any motion to dismiss would be voted upon by the full Senate."

What's next: Hawley is a constitutional lawyer who will argue that senators have to take the constitutional structure seriously — not just hope for the best.

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Draft of McConnell's rules for trial still allows motion to dismiss

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) at a hearing last month. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is preparing a resolution that would leave room for President Trump's lawyers to move immediately to dismiss the impeachment charges if they so choose, according to Republican Sen. Josh Hawley.

Yes, but: Republican Senate leaders, including McConnell and Roy Blunt, the senior senator from Missouri, have already said members aren't interested in a vote to dismiss. And it seems unlikely that Trump's team would push for what would almost certainly be a losing vote — a move that could be seen as a sign of weakness at the outset of the trial.

Go deeperArrowJan 18, 2020

McConnell backs changing Senate rules over Pelosi impeachment delay

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has signed onto a resolution by Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) seeking to change the rules of the Senate to dismiss articles of impeachment if they are not transmitted within 25 days of their approval — in this case, Jan. 12.

Why it matters: The constitutionality of such a move, which 12 other co-sponsors have signed onto, is not clear. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reiterated on Thursday that she is waiting to see what the Senate trial will look like before she names impeachment managers and transmits the articles.

Go deeperArrowJan 9, 2020

Pelosi signals she'll send impeachment articles to Senate next week

Photo: Michael Brochstein/Echoes Wire/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a letter to colleagues Friday that she will ask House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler to "be prepared“ to name impeachment managers and send the articles of impeachment against President Trump to the Senate next week.

Why it matters: Her decision would potentially end a weeks-long standoff between Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell over the structure of the Senate trial — specifically whether new documents or witnesses would be allowed.

Go deeperArrowJan 10, 2020