Watch live: House managers wrap up their impeachment case against President Trump

  • House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, a California Democrat, and Rep. Zoe Lofgren, a California Democrat, walk through the Capitol Rotunda Friday during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

    House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, a California Democrat, and Rep. Zoe Lofgren, a California Democrat, walk through the Capitol Rotunda Friday during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 1/24/2020 4:39 PM

House managers will wrap up their case against President Donald Trump on Friday, completing three days of arguments in the Senate impeachment trial. Trump's lawyers are set to begin presenting his defense on Saturday.

Here are the latest developments:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Trump Lawyers to Begin Defense on Saturday

Trump's lawyers are expected to spend about two hours on Saturday delivering their opening presentation in the president's defense, according to an administration official.

ABC: Trump on Tape Sought Envoy's Ouster

A recording appears to show President Donald Trump saying he wanted Marie Yovanovitch removed as ambassador to Ukraine, ABC News reported without providing the audio.

"Get rid of her," a voice that appears to be Trump's is heard saying on the recording, ABC reported. "Get her out tomorrow. I don't care. Get her out tomorrow. Take her out. OK? Do it."

If accurate, the recording backs up testimony in the House impeachment hearings that Trump had Yovanovitch removed because she was viewed as an obstacle to his efforts to press Ukraine into investigating Democrat Joe Biden and his son. She was recalled in May 2019.

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The president reportedly made the remarks at an April 2018 dinner at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, where Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, associates of Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, were in attendance, ABC said.

The president's comments appeared to be prompted by comments that the network attributed to Parnas, who said that "we gotta get rid of the ambassador" because she is telling people "he's gonna get impeached, just wait."

Trump has denied knowing Parnas beyond taking a few photographs at fundraising events. Parnas has said that his activities in Ukraine with Giuliani were approved by Trump.

Parnas and Fruman were indicted by federal prosecutors on campaign finance charges as part of an alleged scheme to circumvent laws against straw donations and funneling foreign contributions to political candidates.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The White House and Giuliani didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.

Trump Likely to Object If Mulvaney Called

Trump probably would object to testimony from acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney on executive privilege grounds, the same as he would from former National Security Advisor John Bolton, White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham said Friday.

"There is a lot of information, sensitive information, national security information, that they discuss and that's something that should be protected, absolutely, for this country, and again for future presidencies," Grisham said on Fox News.

Mulvaney in October undercut the White House argument that there was "no quid pro quo" when he said that aid for Ukraine was tied to Trump's demand for an investigation into the 2016 election. "We do that all the time with foreign policy," Mulvaney said at the time. "Get over it."

Grisham said Friday that Mulvaney was simply saying that corruption needed to be looked into before aid to Ukraine was released.

"I don't think he did say there was a quid pro quo," she said. "I think he was saying we wanted to look into corruption before we would release taxpayer money. So if that's the quid pro quo, that's OK."

Trump Lawyers Still Plan to Start Saturday

Trump's lawyers still plan to open their defense on Saturday, an administration official familiar with the matter said Friday, hours after the president tweeted that Saturday is the "Death Valley" of television.

"After having been treated unbelievably unfairly in the House, and then having to endure hour after hour of lies, fraud & deception by Shifty Schiff, Cryin' Chuck Schumer & their crew, looks like my lawyers will be forced to start on Saturday, which is called Death Valley in T.V.," Trump tweeted.

Trump Laments Defense Bumped From Prime Time

President Donald Trump's legal team will kick off their defense in his Senate impeachment trial on Saturday, "the Death Valley" of T.V., Trump lamented in an early Friday morning tweet.

"After having been treated unbelievably unfairly in the House, and then having to endure hour after hour of lies, fraud & deception by Shifty Schiff, Cryin' Chuck Schumer & their crew, looks like my lawyers will be forced to start on Saturday, which is called Death Valley in T.V.," Trump tweeted.

Trump's lawyers have promised a vigorous defense against an investigation they have labeled as rushed and biased. Jay Sekulow, one of the lawyers representing Trump, has said the response to the Democrats' case would combine both a rebuttal of their arguments as well as a positive defense of the president's actions.

Some Republicans earlier this week said they worried Democrats were trying to push GOP arguments into the weekend, when TV viewership is traditionally much less. Senator Roy Blunt, one of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's top lieutenants, said Wednesday that Democrats' efforts to force votes on all their amendments was a "cynical" ploy to push the president's defense out of the prime time slot.

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