January 24, 2020 / 6:07 PM / 23 days ago

'Constitutional crime:' Quotes from the fourth day of Trump's impeachment trial

(Reuters) - U.S. House of Representatives Democrats on Friday wrap up their arguments in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump in the U.S. Senate.

The following are selected quotes from top officials:

DEMOCRATIC REPRESENTATIVE HAKEEM JEFFRIES, HOUSE IMPEACHMENT MANAGER:

“President Trump tried to cheat. He got caught. And then he worked hard to cover it up.”

“What can be more urgent than a sitting president trying to cheat in an American election by soliciting foreign interference? ... That’s a constitutional crime in progress.”

DEMOCRATIC REPRESENTATIVE ADAM SCHIFF, LEAD HOUSE IMPEACHMENT MANAGER:

“Cynicism makes it easier for enemies to influence our politics and undermine the national good. Indeed, this is precisely what (Russian President) Vladimir Putin intended when he meddled in the 2016 election. For us to become more cynical. For us to lose faith in the notion that the American system of government is superior to the corrupt, autocratic model of government that he has erected in Russia and sought to export to places like Ukraine.”

FILE PHOTO: Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) participates in a news conference at the Senate subway during a break in the Senate impeachment trial of U.S. President Donald Trump at the Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 23, 2020. REUTERS/Mary Calvert

JAY SEKULOW, PERSONAL LAWYER FOR TRUMP:

“We’re going to rebut and refute, and we’re going to put on an affirmative case tomorrow.”

“They opened up the door as wide as a double door on the Hunter Biden, Joe Biden, Burisma issue. I guess they figured that was their way of getting ahead of it. We will address it.”

TOP SENATE DEMOCRAT CHUCK SCHUMER ON THE CHANCE OF SECURING FOUR REPUBLICAN VOTES TO ALLOW WITNESSES:

“This is a heavy moment. And you don’t know how this sense of constitutional and historical responsibility weighs on the shoulders. We know we’ll never get Trump, we know we’ll never get (Senate Majority Leader Mitch) McConnell, we know they’ll pressure Republican senators. But four Republican senators can step forward and say that we need witnesses and documents. And there are 12 or 13 who have never said a bad word about witnesses and documents.”

REPUBLICAN SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM ON THURSDAY’S ARGUMENTS:

“It became mind-numbing after a while. ... I got the general point you’re trying to make the fourth time you told me. So they’re over-trying their case and I would just urge them to not do that because eventually it gets just hard to follow.”

DEMOCRATIC SENATOR DICK DURBIN

“Let’s get this right. This notion of ‘get it done and get out here as fast as we can’ is not the best approach.”

FILE PHOTO: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) speaks to reporters outside his office, prior to the U.S. House of Representatives voting on two articles of impeachment against U.S. President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., December 18, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/File Photo

“Everybody’s bone weary, I can tell you, just sitting hour after hour after hour. But you know there’s a lot of evidence here.”

REPUBLICAN SENATOR MIKE BRAUN OF INDIANA

“They’re trying to build a circumstantial case for quid pro quo ... when there wasn’t an actual quid pro quo. ... That’s going to be a tough sell. Most folks from where I’m from are suspicious of the origin in the first place.”

Reporting by Scott Malone; Editing by David Gregorio and Jonathan Oatis

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