Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) asked during the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on Thursday whether Chief Justice John Roberts' oversight of the trial has "contributed to [the justice's] loss of legitimacy" given that no witnesses had yet been called.
What are the details?
"Mr. Chief Justice, I send a question to the desk," Sen. Warren declared from the Senate floor, addressing Roberts.
Justice Roberts thanked her before reading it aloud — as he has with every other question that has been accepted — and Fox News reported that he "seemed visibly irritated" by what Warren asked.
Warren's question, directed to the Democratic House impeachment managers, read: "At a time when large majorities of Americans have lost faith in government, does the fact that the chief justice is presiding over an impeachment trial in which Republican senators have thus far refused to allow witnesses or evidence contributed to the loss of legitimacy of the Chief Justice, the Supreme Court, and the Constitution?"
Roberts did not comment on Warren's question, but paused while making subtle nods with one hand over the other, waiting for House impeachment manager Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) to answer.
"Senator, I uh, would not say that it contributes to a loss of confidence in the chief justice," Schiff began. "I think the chief justice has presided admirably."
Schiff went on to argue that he does not think "a trial without witnesses reflects adversely on the chief justice," but that it would reflect "adversely on us," speaking of the United States.
Hours after Warren's question, Politico released a memo written by Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in 1999, wherein he argued to his fellow senators at the time that no further witnesses would be required by the Senate in the impeachment trial against Democratic former President Bill Clinton.