Faced with McConnell’s disciplined strategy to protect Trump, it seems, the Democrats have decided to give up on the Senate and hope they can win in the court of public opinion. “We have always known that leader McConnell would not be for a fair trial,” Schumer said during the press conference. “He said that from the beginning.”

Schumer now says that forcing votes on witnesses at the end of an initial trial presentation might still work to pressure vulnerable senators to come along, after having argued for days that McConnell’s plan was a “poorly disguised trap.”

“If we leave the question of witnesses and documents until after all the presentations are complete, leader McConnell will argue that the Senate has heard enough, and we shouldn’t prolong the trial any longer,” Schumer said last week. “At that point, you can be sure he’ll label anyone who wants to subpoena evidence as a partisan who wants to drag the whole affair out.”