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Impeachment hearing starts with bitter fight after Nadler nukes GOP’s minority hearing request

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Thursday’s impeachment hearings in the House of Representatives got off to a contentious fight after Rep. Jerry Nadler denied House Republicans’ request to delay the hearing until minority members of the House Judiciary Committee get to hold their own separate hearing.

In responding to the GOP’s request, Nadler ran down the history of minority hearings and explained that they have never been used as a delay tactic for impeachment proceedings.

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“There is no precedent for the use of minority days to delay committee legislative or impeachment proceedings,” he said. “It is clear from the legislative history that the minority day rule is not intended to delay legislative activity.”

Nadler then recounted times when Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) agreed to schedule a minority hearing for Democrats 14 years ago — only to completely sabotage it shortly after.

“In 2005, then-chairman Sensenbrenner scheduled the minority day hearing, but cut off witnesses, shut off the microphones, shut off the lights and abruptly ended the hearing while members were seeking recognition to speak,” he said. “No one in the then-majority argued in favor of protecting our rights. There is no precedent supporting the gentleman’s point of order. I do not sustain the point of order.”

Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee refused to accept Nadler’s rationale, however, and forced a roll call vote to table their motion.

Watch the video below.

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Conservatives rage after Westworld actor Jeffrey Wright compares armed protest to Klan rally

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Actor Jeffrey Wright kicked a hornet's nest of conservative fury by comparing an armed protest in Virginia to a Ku Klux Klan rally.

The star of HBO's Westworld three James Bond films mocked the Richmond gun rally in a tweet linking to a Washington Post article on the armed demonstration, and noted the event was scheduled on Martin Luther King Day.

“The organizers aren’t at all bothered that a gun circle jerk in Richmond, VA on #MLKDay has a Klan-rally smell to it?" Wright tweeted. "Wonder why."

The organizers aren’t at all bothered that a gun circle jerk in Richmond, VA on #MLKDay has a Klan-rally smell to it? Wonder why. https://t.co/1kq9pu1is1

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Trump’s legal team calls on Senate Republicans to ‘swiftly reject’ the impeachment charges and acquit him: report

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In a 110-page brief submitted to the Senate the day before his impeachment trial begins, President Trump's legal team called on Republicans to "swiftly reject" the charges against him and bring an acquittal, the New York Times reports. According to the lawyers, Trump committed no crime and is the victim of a partisan witch hunt.

Trump's lawyers labeled the impeachment effort against Trump as a “brazenly political act” that was brought about by a “rigged process” that should be rejected by the Senate. However, nowhere in the brief do they deny that Trump tried to pressure Ukraine's government to investigate his political rivals -- which is the core basis for impeachment. Instead, the lawyers argue that Trump can conduct business with foreign governments however he sees fit, adding that allegations that Trump abused his power are simply a "novel theory."

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‘Dead wrong’: House Dems release scathing rebuttal to White House’s widely panned legal brief

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The Trump White House's latest defense of the president ahead of his impending impeachment trial has been widely panned, and has even sparked speculation that Trump himself had a hand in writing it due to its low-grade legal analysis.

A legal brief filed by President Donald Trump's lawyers late last week called impeachment proceedings "constitutionally invalid," even though impeachment is literally a part of the Constitution, and also accused Democrats of engaging in a "brazen and unlawful attempt to overturn the results of the 2016 election," even though Vice President Mike Pence would take over in the event that Trump was removed by the Senate.

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