McConnell to Pelosi: You can keep your impeachment articles

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday he wouldn’t negotiate the terms of a Senate trial with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who is threatening to withhold the articles of impeachment.

“It’s beyond me how the speaker and Democratic leader in the Senate think withholding the articles of impeachment and not sending them over gives them leverage,” McConnell told reporters Thursday. “Frankly, I’m not anxious to have the trial.”

Pelosi said Thursday she plans to send the House-passed impeachment articles to the Senate as soon as lawmakers strike a deal on how to conduct a trial.

“The next thing for us will be when we see the process that is set forth in the Senate,” Pelosi said. “Then, we’ll know the number of monitors that we may have to go forward.”

Pelosi must appoint Democratic lawmakers to serve as managers to prosecute the case in the Senate.

The House is poised to adjourn for the year, leaving impeachment in limbo. There are no immediate plans for lawmakers to vote on a resolution to appoint managers who would deliver the articles to the Senate. The House will next convene the week of Jan. 7.

McConnell rejected demands by Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, that the Senate subpoena former and current Trump administration officials to testify at a Senate trial.

McConnell said the Senate would hold a trial based on the evidence presented in the House.

“If she thinks her case is so weak she doesn’t want to send it over, throw me into that briar patch,” McConnell said.

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