Senate Refuses to Designate
Chief Justice to Rule on Evidence

The Senate on Jan. 22 tabled (killed) an amendment that would empower Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. to rule on the relevance of witnesses and documents proposed to be subpoenaed in President Trump's impeachment trial. This would change a rule requiring disputes over relevance to be resolved by a majority vote of senators. The Senate, which has 53 Republicans and a Democratic caucus of 47 senators, could vote to overrule the chief justice's opinion.

Adam Schiff, D-Calif., told Republicans: "If you can’t trust the chief justice, appointed by a Republican president, to make a fair decision about materiality [of witnesses and documents], I think it betrays the weakness of your case."

Attorney Jay Sekulow of the president's defense team said: "With no disrespect to the chief justice, this is not an appellate court. This is the U.S. Senate. There is not an arbitration clause in the U.S. Constitution. The Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments. We oppose the amendment."

A yes vote was in opposition to the amendment.

Roll Call #25 01/22/2020

  Yes   No   Not Voting
Republicans 53   0   0
Democrats 0   47   0
Totals 53   47   0
Roll Call #25; 01/22/2020       By Thomas Voting Reports, Inc.

47   Democrats Yea Nay   53   Republicans Yea Nay
Total   0 47   Total   53 0
Baldwin, Tammy WI   N   Alexander, Lamar   TN Y  
Bennet, Michael CO   N   Barrasso, John   WY Y  
Blumenthal, Richard CT   N   Blackburn, Marsha   TN Y  
Booker, Cory NJ   N   Blunt, Roy   MO Y  
Brown, Sherrod OH   N   Boozman, John   AR Y  
Cantwell, Maria WA   N   Braun, Mike   IN Y  
Cardin, Ben MD   N   Burr, Richard   NC Y  
Carper, Thomas DE   N   Capito, Shelley   WV Y  
Casey, Bob PA   N   Cassidy, Bill   LA Y  
Coons, Christopher DE   N   Collins, Susan   ME Y  
Cortez Masto, Catherine NV   N   Cornyn, John   TX Y  
Duckworth, Tammy IL   N   Cotton, Tom   AR Y  
Durbin, Richard IL   N   Cramer, Kevin   ND Y  
Feinstein, Dianne CA   N   Crapo, Mike   ID Y  
Gillibrand, Kirsten NY   N   Cruz, Ted   TX Y  
Harris, Kamala CA   N   Daines, Steve   MT Y  
Hassan, Maggie NH   N   Enzi, Mike   WY Y  
Heinrich, Martin NM   N   Ernst, Joni   IA Y  
Hirono, Mazie HI   N   Fischer, Deb   NE Y  
Jones, Doug AL   N   Gardner, Cory   CO Y  
Kaine, Timothy VA   N   Graham, Lindsey   SC Y  
King, Angus ME   N   Grassley, Charles   IA Y  
Klobuchar, Amy MN   N   Hawley, Josh   MO Y  
Leahy, Patrick VT   N   Hoeven, John   ND Y  
Manchin, Joseph WV   N   Hyde-Smith, Cindy   MS Y  
Markey, Edward MA   N   Inhofe, Jim   OK Y  
Menendez, Robert NJ   N   Johnson, Ron   WI Y  
Merkley, Jeff OR   N   Kennedy, John   LA Y  
Murphy, Christopher CT   N   Lankford, James   OK Y  
Murray, Patty WA   N   Lee, Mike   UT Y  
Peters, Gary MI   N   Loeffler, Kelly   GA Y  
Reed, John RI   N   McConnell, Mitch   KY Y  
Rosen, Jacklyn NV   N   McSally, Martha   AZ Y  
Sanders, Bernard VT   N   Moran, Jerry   KS Y  
Schatz, Brian HI   N   Murkowski, Lisa   AK Y  
Schumer, Charles NY   N   Paul, Rand   KY Y  
Shaheen, Jeanne NH   N   Perdue, David   GA Y  
Sinema, Kyrsten AZ   N   Portman, Rob   OH Y  
Smith, Tina MN   N   Risch, James   ID Y  
Stabenow, Debbie MI   N   Roberts, Pat   KS Y  
Tester, Jon MT   N   Romney, Mitt   UT Y  
Udall, Tom NM   N   Rounds, Mike   SD Y  
Van Hollen, Chris MD   N   Rubio, Marco   FL Y  
Warner, Mark VA   N   Sasse, Ben   NE Y  
Warren, Elizabeth MA   N   Scott, Rick   FL Y  
Whitehouse, Sheldon RI   N   Scott, Tim   SC Y  
Wyden, Ron OR   N   Shelby, Richard   AL Y  
          Sullivan, Dan   AK Y  
          Thune, John   SD Y  
          Tillis, Thomas   NC Y  
          Toomey, Patrick   PA Y  
          Wicker, Roger   MS Y  
          Young, Todd   IN Y  
 
Independents Angus King of Maine and Bernie Sanders of Vermont caucus with Democrats and their votes appear in the Democratic totals.