Partisanship gripped Congress on Tuesday as Senate Republicans and Democrats clashed on the rules governing the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
Here are three things to know:
McConnell proposed a twist to the rules, then backed down
Earlier this month, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell promised he would put forward rules "very similar" to those used during President Bill Clinton's impeachment trial -- pushed when Democrats were in control. He also announced that he had enough votes to advance it, after meeting privately with moderate and vulnerable Republicans, such as Maine Sen. Susan Collins.
"All we're doing here is saying we're going to get started in exactly the same way that 100 senators agreed to 20 years ago," McConnell said at the time.
Then, on the eve of the Senate's consideration of the trial rules late Monday, McConnell, R-Ky., revealed a twist. Each side would be given 24 hours to present their arguments, as they were in 1999. But unlike 20 years ago, there would be a stricter time cap: The 24 hours must take place "over up to 2 session days," according to the rules pitched late Monday.
That rule would have meant that because of the 1 p.m. planned kickoff time each day, Senate arguments would have bled into the early morning hours of the next day while much of America was asleep.Then without explanation Tuesday, McConnell announced a new plan: arguments on each side could play out across three days instead of two. That means each side would be able to wrap up by bedtime.