The House began the public phase of the impeachment inquiry this week with hearings featuring three witnesses from the State Department. All three gave testimony that generally supports the rationale behind House Democrats’ push to impeach President Trump.
The timetable for a final House vote on impeachment is still up in the air, but we expect a vote in mid- or late December. This would mean that the Senate trial would begin in January. Senators told us this week that they expect a trial to last between four and eight weeks, which would mean that it likely would run through the crucial early contests for the Democratic presidential nomination fight, most notably the Iowa caucus on February 3 and the New Hampshire primary on February 11.
Six senators currently running for president would need to participate in the Senate impeachment trial rather than campaign in these early states, which likely would hurt their chances to win those states.