A new story from Brian Lehrer


What a short day after what more than fourteen hours yesterday of debate this took ten minutes this morning but the out come of course not a surprise twenty three to seventeen a boat straight along party lines what was that thing at the end there with I guess it was ranking Republican Collins reserving the right to offer dissenting views just before chairman now they're gaveled it out of session yes that's just the pro forma procedures that are taken when a bill is approved by a committee and sent to the floor I it's a sign in this will not surprise you that Republicans plan to contest this impeachment when it comes to the full house next week expected a vote when the amendment process ended around eleven o'clock last night instead chairman either call that recess until ten o'clock this morning which infuriated Republicans at least they acted infuriated why did now they're not take that vote well Democrats were also unhappy about the timing because they thought they had an understanding with Republicans that the debate would wrap up about five or maybe six and they would then have the vote yesterday in pretty good times because of course the the debate yesterday it went on for more than fourteen hours but it was the same half hour debate just repeated twenty eight times out but what Republicans did was continue to offer amendments continue the debate process until eleven and at that point I chairman Nadler thought it was not a good idea to be open to the charge that they had voted in the dead of night to impeach the president so he went ahead and postpone that vote until this morning well the funny enough from the Democratic Party point of view wouldn't it have been more of a prime time show the eleven o'clock hour eastern time eight o'clock on the west coast then doing it at ten in the morning on a week day well that's I think that's entirely possible they may have a smaller audience this morning but it seems like at a more appropriate moment to do it you know after that long and contentious debate everybody exhausted the partisanship of the moment under scored I I think that Democrats saw this is something that could look bad for them that could be used in ads in attacks for them that as midnight approached they voted against president trump us so they decided to wait till this morning and ranking Republican Collins called it the most bush league play I've seen in my life postponing the vote to this morning did they really care so much or was that just more theatrical sniping at the process I think it was probably theatrics I mean for for congressman Collins I bet with the was some benefit of some clients right he could think of other things that happened during his long career there were more outrageous but if it is true that tight German Nadler did not give a courtesy heads up to Doug Collins a beforehand about what he was going to do so in that way it's just one more demonstration about how partisan distraught every single thing is now are in Washington listeners who wants to call with the reaction to the articles of impeachment getting out of committee now and heading to the house floor will talk about the time line of what happens next with Susan page as we go but does this feel like anything to you if you have feels strong feelings on either side or any question that you want to ask Washington bureau chief for USA today Susan page two one two four three three W. NYC four three three nine six nine two Susan what I expected weeks ago it happened has not happened the way I anticipated I thought the facts were so clear that the debate would quickly become framed around this was bad but maybe not worthy of impeachment instead all day yesterday the Republicans on the committee argued that the president's behavior was perfect was that a change of strategy well it was you know they strategies one of the concerns some Republicans have had is that they have at one clear strategy the approach they took by and large yesterday was the one that president trump wanted them to take up at the point when some Democrats some Republicans were suggesting that what the president did wasn't a good thing but it didn't rise to the level of removing him from office the president made it clear that that was not his view of what it happened his he was he had done nothing wrong he wanted a full throated defense are so what you saw in the southern province during a couple things yesterday one arguing he had done nothing wrong second not bother you to argue about what he did but instead racing other concerns like what did Joe Biden do when he was vice president and the sun was working for gas company in Ukraine and you also saw kicked you continue complaints about the process being unfair I think Republicans felt the that was pretty successful in at least muddying the waters about what it was exactly that the president did when it came to Ukraine and why Democrats felt it warranted impeachment and just journalistically speaking these are mostly arguments the ones that defend the president's behavior that defy the known facts so many witnesses and text messages show eight in a White House meeting conditioned on announcing the investigations but the Republicans were arguing they weren't they say trump withheld eight out of concern about corruption overall but there's no evidence of that only that he and his people kept pressing for the announcement of investigations they say Joe Biden work to get the Ukrainian prosecutor who is investigating sons company fired as if it was to save his son from something when really that prosecutor had shut down the investigation and the US and Europe together were lobbying for that prosecutor to get sat so that corruption investigations would resume so is this new in American history defending the president by asking the American people to believe what they're told not the evidence in front of their eyes so this is what I think of the most distressing thing that's happened in the past few years and our democracy which is you can fact check day and night as you just did our newspapers run fact checks every day in the paper an online but if you repeat something over and over again I even if a fact checker says it's wrong you can sense we found that you can convince a for a number of your supporters that tight that what you say is right or at least nobody's right there's no one to believe we don't believe anybody that's that is been something that president trump is done since his days as a candidate and our best effort as fact checkers on some big issues including this one I think I have mixed results with with our readers and our listeners also they say the Democrats are charging ahead despite having enough witnesses with direct contact with the president on all this but the White House is withholding those witnesses Bolton who likened it to a drug deal after being in the room for one of the key meetings Mulvaney Giuliani pump pale pants all in on the shake down according to multiple witnesses the state department and Pentagon and National Security Council officials who testified so how can they make that case about the Democrats charging ahead without the direct witnesses who they are with holding what you're making just exactly the point Democrats made in response but it did not prevent Republicans for making the charge with the Republicans and Democrats really as of sat with each other yesterday as the testimony made a scene seem I'm I'm looking at the USA today headline on this this morning which is fury and other takeaways from Thursday's marathon impeachment debate so was it real fury or was it just what they thought was the necessary theater on each side well that's a that's a tough question there is some fury there is indeed a very destructive mode in Congress and in Washington up everybody's at their battle stations people I guess I think the headline is right I think people feel pretty furious I think Democrats are furious about what they see what they view as president trump getting away with something that was our a grave danger to our nation and Republicans are are also seem pretty furious maybe there's is of a bit more manufactured but pretty effective and one thing we one reason I thought I was wondering why the hearing went on for so long yesterday given that there was so little new that was said it really was like everybody was reading a script and I think one thing that encourage Republicans to keep going was that they were all the tweets from president trump one hundred and twenty three tweets from president trump yesterday his biggest record ever a lot of them encouraging Republicans to keep making art was a lot of the re tweeting the arguments are that members of that Republican members of the Judiciary Committee were making on there on Twitter feeds so maybe at a bit of stage management but in fact people here in Washington are pretty mad can't blame the guy for treating that bites I think you can blame trump for a lot of things but if you are being impeached at that moment for you to be lashing out in response that's just human right well except is it smart you know you think about how president Clinton are handled his impeachment the last president to be impeached I I covered that never thought I'd covered impeachment now entering my second one was that one president Clinton gave every public indication it was paying no attention to what was going on with his impeachment he was totally focused on the people's business now we know especially we know now behind the scenes that he was quite concerned and watching closely as impeachment but he thought politically was important to convey the idea that he cared about what was happening in your life not in his life we haven't seen that from president trump it's quite clear that this is issue number one for him and that it is has just made him quite a bit but also just in terms of political strategy that clearly worked in Clinton's case to seem like he was staying focused on the people's business and he was looking away to whatever degree he was allegedly looking away for trump I think the game is to keep enough of his supporters aggrieved that there won't be enough pressure on the Republican senators to flip and convict him next year and by constantly paying attention and shouting about it on Twitter or elsewhere is the way to keep that minority of Americans who are firmly within them feel aggrieved along with them in there a minority of Americans but a big majority of Republicans and that is the political fact that has protected president trump I was this impeachment Republican members of Congress have been unwilling to break with him and I think that's because you can he has such solid support among Republicans in their districts in their states nobles in Washington Heights you're on W. NYC with Susan page from USA today did I say in my mind hello you did say alright thanks a lot bye and love your show hi students really quick question for you so just as the articles have been voted out of committee and obstruction of Congress being one of those articles is it possible for this not to come to a house vote for impeachment yet until the witnesses particularly through our court system thereby somewhat making a perpetual includes impeachment is for the president until these witnesses were able to come before the committee I'll take my answer off line thank you so much thank you so much since well that that's an interesting idea and of course in the house the majority has lots of control of what happens on the floor so speaker Nancy Pelosi could decide to delay this but I can tell you that is not her intention we know that she is planning a vote next Wednesday on the floor of the house she wants to get this off her plate and over to the Senate I she's she's just scheduled in fact what we are calling in Washington an impeachment sandwich which is on Tuesday the house will vote on a big spending bill they've trying to get ready so that we don't have a government shut down at the next week on Wednesday they'll be a.

Coming up next