• House Democrats had three days to present their case to the Senate
  • Trump's legal team is scheduled to begin its rebuttal on Saturday
  • Friday's proceedings focused on the second article of impeachment: obstruction of Congress

Update 3:35 p.m. EST

Democrats kicked off the second segment of Friday’s session with an overview of what constituted President Trump’s obstruction of Congress.

“We must stop this president,” said Val Demings, D-Fla., diving into the president’s efforts to stymie the House investigation.

Demings, a former police chief in Orlando, Florida, said Trump’s actions “pose a dire and continuing threat to the foundation of our constitutional framework.”

“It’s simple: The president abused the power entrusted to him by the American people in a scheme to suppress evidence … and orchestrate a massive coverup. … His obstruction remains ongoing,” Demings concluded.

Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, a former judge, said the obstruction started with the delay in turning over a whistleblower complaint over Trump’s July 25 phone conversation with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky during which he asked Zelensky to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.

She then cited Trump’s executive order, directing federal agencies to refuse to produce documents and officials refuse to testify.

“ Most reprehensible of all: President Trump waged a campaign of intimidation against those brave public servants who came forward,” Garcia said.

She continued: “I have never ever seen anything like this from a litigant or party in any case, not anywhere. From the beginning of this scandal, the president has sought to cover up and hide key evidence.”

Garcia used the president's own words in accusing him of trying to delegitimize the House inquiry, showing clips of him saying lawmakers should not be allowed to investigate him.

During a break in the session, Trump attorney Jay Sekulow said the defense team would present a brief overview of their rebuttal.

“We have three hours to put it out, so we’ll take whatever time is appropriate during that three hours to kind of lay out what the case will look like,” he said. “But next week is when you see the full presentation.”

Update: 3:05 p.m. EST

Democrats altered their approach in presenting their impeachment case to the Senate, bringing up three case managers in the first 90 minutes and breaking the presentation into five segments and interspersed numerous video clips.

In the first two days of presentations, managers spoke for 45 minutes or more, prompting complaints from senators that the presentation was tedious and repetitive.

Little new was said. The managers emphasized the corrupt nature of President Trump’s request that Ukraine investigate his political rivals in exchange for $391 million in military aid.

Rep. Adam Schiff cautioned against becoming numb to foreign interference in our elections, saying they would have a corrosive effect and benefit Russia.

“That way lies disaster for the great American experiment in self-governance,” Schiff said, saying Trump will continue to cheat his way through the 2020 election season, necessitating his removal from office.

Original story

In what is expected to be the final day of their presentation to the Senate Friday, House Democrats were to discuss the second article of impeachment against President Trump: obstruction of Congress.

During their granular presentation Thursday on the first article, abuse of power, House impeachment managers touched on Trump’s refusal to cooperate with the House investigation into whether he tried to pressure Ukraine into investigating his political rivals in exchange for $391 in military aid.

Trump ordered key administration officials not to comply with the House impeachment subpoenas and ordered government agencies not to turn over any documents.

You can watch Friday’s proceedings below:

Rep. Adam Schiff, the lead prosecutor, opened the case against the president Wednesday following a series of votes Tuesday on amendments to the Senate rules governing the trial. Ten of the 11 amendments offered were tabled along partisan lines, putting off decisions on whether to call witnesses and subpoena documents until after Trump’s legal team presents its rebuttal and senators are allowed to ask questions. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, seen as one of the moderates who could support the call for additional evidence, voted with the Democrats on one of the amendments on procedure.

Two polls indicate the public wants a more thorough trial than what Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has been pushing. A Monmouth University poll released Tuesday indicates 57% of Americans say House managers should be allowed to produce new evidence for consideration while a CNN poll released Monday indicated 69% want to hear from witnesses who did not testify during the House impeachment investigation.

Democrats are hoping that public sentiment will pressure Collins and Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Mitt Romney of Utah, Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Joni Ernst of Iowa, Cory Gardner of Colorado, Martha McSally of Arizona and Thom Tillis of North Carolina to break ranks.

During Tuesday’s presentation Schiff ticked off 10 ways to tell Trump violated his constitutional duties in trying to solicit a foreign country to interfere in the 2020 U.S. presidential election while Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., summed up the reason for holding the trial: “The Constitution is not a suicide pact” that would force the country to wait until the next election to remove a corrupt president from office.

The Trump rebuttal was scheduled to begin Saturday.