As President Donald Trump's impeachment trial at the US Senate picks up speed, members of the Senate have expressed that they welcome this chance to attend the Senate proceedings without the use of their cellphones or electronic devices. The ban on cellphones during the impeachment of the President is based on a decades-old precedent that is now being enforced.
Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar said that this was a form of 'Digital Detox' during a break in the impeachment proceeding. This is only the third ever presidential impeachment trial in US history. The rules also state that the Senators must remain quiet and listen as the other side makes their case. These rules are meant to keep the 100 members of the Senate focused on the proceedings.
Senator Ben Cardin while speaking to local media during a break said that he was just sending a message to his granddaughter and that he did not mind not having his phone with him during the proceedings. He also added that not having his phone allowed him to pay attention to whatever was going on in regards to the proceedings.
Senators aren’t allowed to have our phones in the chamber, so I’ll be handing over the keys of this account to my Senate staff during the impeachment trial. Follow along for updates and information to help explain what's happening on the Senate floor.— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) January 21, 2020
The Sen cameras (which are controlled by the Sen) will still operate & be shown on C-SPAN2. Cell phones are not allowed in the senate chambers (for members, media or otherwise)— courtney beesch (@courtneybeesch) January 21, 2020
but! media in the chambers are taking notes, just no independent audio/vid recording
Members of the Senate who are in the trial are relying on their staff to keep in touch with their constituency, even the four democratic presidential hopefuls were relying on their staff and loved ones to maintain communications with the outside world. Democratic Senator Klobuchar, a Democrat has for the duration of the trial handed over her social media to her daughter, Abigail.
On the other spectrum of the argument, Senator Mitt Romney said that he misses his electronics and wishes he was in touch with his staff.
Abigail here! My mom is in D.C. today, so I’ll be taking over her Twitter account as I travel across Iowa. We’ve got a lot planned, so make sure to follow along... -AB— Amy Klobuchar (@amyklobuchar) January 22, 2020