Transcript for Senators sworn in as jurors in Trump’s 2nd impeachment trial
We're also following the breaking news tonight in the impeachment of former president trump. That trial now under way, though the actual start delayed for a couple of weeks. Tonight, we have learned that democratic senator Patrick Leahy, who is presiding over the trial, has been taken to the what our team is learning about his condition tonight. The news comes just hours after all 100 senators were sworn in as jurors, who, of course, will decide whether to convict the former president. And today, nearly every Republican senator voting that the trial is unconstitutional. That won't stop the trial, but what does it mean for Democrats and their chances of any conviction? And what president Biden even acknowledged overnight about the chances of conviction, too. Here's Rachel Scott up on the hill again tonight. Reporter: Tonight, the senator presiding over the second impeachment trial of Donald Trump whisked from the capitol in an ambulance. Aides to senator Patrick Leahy telling us the senator "Was not feeling well," and after being examined by a doctor was "Taken to a local hospital for observation out of an abundance of caution." It came just hours after Leahy swore in his fellow lawmakers as jurors in the trial. So help you god? Reporter: But right from the outset, it became clear there will likely not be enough votes to convict. Republican senator Rand Paul forcing senators to vote on whether the trial itself is unconstitutional, since trump is already out of office. This is not the trial of a president, but of a private citizen. Reporter: Democrats and many legal experts insist the constitution does not exempt former presidents from impeachment. The theory that the senate can't try former officials would amount to a constitutional get out of jail free card for any president who commits an impeachable offense. Reporter: Still today, nearly all the Republican senators, 45 of them, voted that the trial is unconstitutional. Just last week, Republican leader Mitch Mcconnell don decked trump's words to the mob that stormed the capitol. The mob was fed lies. They were provoked by the president and other powerful people. Mr. Mcconnell -- No. Reporter: But today, Mcconnell, too, voted that the impeachment trial should not proceed. In fact, only five Republican senators voted to move forward. And one of them, Susan Collins of Maine, later saying this -- I think it's pretty obvious from the vote today that it is extraordinarily unlikely that the president will be convicted. Just do the math. Reporter: Democrats need the support of 17 Republicans to convict trump. And today's show of force, an early indicator that they just won't get there. All right, so, let's get to Rachel back up on the hill tonight. And Rachel, even president Biden telling CNN that he believes the impeachment trial has to happen, in his words, but that he does not think the former president will be convicted, so knowing that, and you heard senator Collins there saying, do the math, what are you hearing from democratic leadership tonight about the reasons for moving forward, what will they tell the American people and any additional news on senator Leahy? Reporter: Well, senate majority leader chuck Schumer says this about holding Donald Trump accountable. He says that his actions cannot be swept under the rug. And as for senator Leahy, we are told tonight he is still in the hospital out of an abundance of caution, David. All right, Rachel Scott again tonight. Rachel, thank you.
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