Please don't treat admission of House evidence as a “big concession”


As the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump began Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) made some last-minute (and indeed, handwritten) changes to the proposed rules to declare that the evidence the House investigation had gathered thus far would be admitted.

One problem with some of the media coverage for this rule change, though: The bar for how Senate Republicans would handle this trial is apparently so low in people’s expectations that it is somehow being treated as a major concession to acknowledge that the evidence exists, rather than making it contingent on a separate vote to even let it in at all.

Take this as a gentle warning, media: Please, do not do this. If the acknowledgment of basic reality is a “big concession,” then we’re all in trouble.