Senators and aides in each party say there is an effort in the works to hold a short, morning-only impeachment trial session on Saturday to hear the beginning of the opening arguments from President Donald Trump’s defense counsel and then allowing senators to leave town for the weekend.
The plan is not finalized but seemed to be gaining steam on Thursday as word of the plan circulated through the Republican and Democratic caucuses.
“I’m hoping for an early start on Saturday,” said Sen. Roy Blunt a Republican from Missouri who chairs the Rules Committee and has been closely involved with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in arranging the logistics and other support of the trial.
An early start is possible, in part, because Chief Justice John Roberts would not need to do his day job presiding over the Supreme Court on a Saturday, something he’s done all week before presiding over the impeachment trial in the afternoon and into the night.
One senator who asked not to be named told CNN that Roberts is amenable to the plan.
The plan would need unanimous consent from all senators but after a long few days stuck in the Senate chamber, the idea struck many as perfect.
For Democratic candidates running for president, it would allow them to dash to Iowa or New Hampshire for some much-needed campaigning after being holed up in DC for several days.
For everyone else, it might be a time to catch up on some sleep after several late nights.
Sen. Kevin Cramer, a Republican from North Dakota, mentioned the idea of having a shorter session in remarks to reporters Thursday about the Democratic impeachment managers’ case, saying, “I think that every hour that goes by where they don’t say something new, they make it easier for people on the bubble to vote against their position.”
“There are a lot of people who want to catch airplanes out of here,” Cramer said. “No surprise.”