CBS’s O’Donnell Frets: If Trump Team is ‘Untruthful,’ Can Dems ‘Object’?

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During a special report just before President Trump’s defense team began making their opening statement in the Senate impeachment trial on Saturday morning, CBS Evening News anchor Norah O’Donnell seemed to assume that they would lie and hoped Democrats could find a way to “object” throughout the proceeding.

O’Donnell worried: “The case that we’re going to hear made today from the President’s team. Kim, one of the questions has been, if the President’s team says something that is untruthful, is there any method that a senator can object? The Chief Justice can object? Can the House managers object?”

 

 

Legal analyst Kim Wehle reassured the troubled anchor: “Well, the senators can pass a note to the Chief Justice or the House managers could make an objection on the record....They could say, ‘Objection, your honor, this is inaccurate. Please, strike it from the record.’”

Wehle mused that Chief Justice John Roberts could take it upon himself to interrupt the President’s defense team, but lamented: “I think that’s unlikely with this particular justice. If the Democrats want something, they have to ask for it.”

O’Donnell then made a point of touting a PR stunt conducted by Democrats: “...we saw earlier the House managers bring over 28,578 pages of the trial record to make it into the official Senate record.”

Where was all this skepticism when Democrats were making their case and constantly engaging in rhetorical bomb-throwing against the President and the Republicans in the Senate?

Here is a transcript of the January 25 exchange:  

10:04 AM ET

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NORAH O’DONNELL: The case that we're going to hear made today from the President’s team. Kim, one of the questions has been, if the President’s team says something that is untruthful, is there any method that a senator can object? The Chief Justice can object? Can the House managers object?

KIM WEHLE [CBS NEWS LEGAL ANALYST]: Well, the senators can pass a note to the Chief Justice or the House managers could make an objection on the record. There’s nothing in the rules that would prevent that. They could say, “Objection, your honor, this is inaccurate. Please, strike it from the record.” Because, in theory, the record is what goes to senators, as juries – as jurors, to make a determination as to what happened. And it’s the lawyers’ job to make sure that that record is accurate. The Chief Justice could, what we call in law, Sua Sponte, make a determination, “Listen, I’m going to ask you to disregard that.” But so far, I think that’s unlikely with this particular justice. If the Democrats want something, they have to ask for it.

O’DONNELL: That record is particularly important. That’s why we saw earlier the House managers bring over 28,578 pages of the trial record to make it into the official Senate record.

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