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McConnell Will Not Hold Emergency Senate Session, Leaving Impeachment Trial After Trump's Term

Newsweek logo Newsweek 1/13/2021 Emily Czachor
a man wearing a suit and tie: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) arrives at the U.S. Capitol and walks to his office on January 06, 2021 in Washington, DC. © Drew Angerer/Getty Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) arrives at the U.S. Capitol and walks to his office on January 06, 2021 in Washington, DC.

Even as calls mount for Donald Trump's swift removal from office in the aftermath of last week's assault on the U.S. Capitol, outgoing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell rebuffed his colleagues' push to hold an immediate impeachment trial during an emergency session.

News of the Republican congressman's decision to reject calls for a prompt trial surfaced on Wednesday, prior to the House of Representatives' expected vote on an article of impeachment later that day. A spokesperson for McConnell reportedly confirmed his formal rejection in comments to multiple news outlets early Wednesday afternoon. The spokesperson said McConnell's aides informed staff at Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer's office of the decision, according to the Associated Press.

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Lawmakers are endeavoring to force Trump's early departure from the presidency after thousands of his supporters stormed the Capitol complex during a violent siege on January 6, interrupting Congress' joint sessions to certify President-elect Joe Biden's victory.

Without an emergency session, the Senate will not reconvene until at least January 19, the eve of Biden's inauguration. McConnell's opposition to a more timely session effectively prevents a presidential impeachment from occurring prior to the official end of Trump's term.

Newsweek reached out to McConnell's office for confirmation and further comment but did not receive a reply in time for publication.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

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