Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., speaks to reporters about the possibility of a partial government shutdown, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Has the stressful nature of the Senate’s impeachment trial proceedings become too much for Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY)? Were all those victories Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) racked up on the Senate floor Tuesday more than Schumer could stand?
Those questions and more are on people’s minds today after video surfaced which appears to show Schumer on the Senate floor gesturing to an empty seat as McConnell spoke Tuesday.
Twitter user “Grenni” posted videos from ABC News, one in which she zoomed in and one that she says is the original, which show Schumer walking down a Senate aisle and speaking briefly to McConnell. A few seconds later, he walks over to his chair and appears to gesture and say something to it before sitting down.
Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) is sitting behind him in the clip and she looks to her left, perhaps wondering who he was talking to:
I have a question, is this Chuck Schumer and did he tell an invisible person to get off his chair?
I zoomed in so you guys could see better. Look at the blonde lady behind him, she looks confused. 🤔 pic.twitter.com/HasrZjFibl
— 🇺🇸 Gren 🇮🇱 (@Graenni) January 22, 2020
Grenni also posted the original video, which she said she recorded off a friend’s phone (which would explain the grainy appearance). In this one, you see Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), who is beside Murray, looking around as well:
Here is the original from ABC guys pic.twitter.com/POx0KuJDqv
— 🇺🇸 Grenni 🇮🇱 (@Graenni) January 22, 2020
I’m not a video analyst, but judging by a couple of other random video clips pulled from YouTube that show Murray and Schumer in the same outfits and standing/sitting in the same places at other points during the day, the video is legit.
It was also reminiscent of the viral January 2018 video that showed now-retired Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) taking off a pair of glasses that weren’t there. He joked in a tweet about how eyeglasses maker Warby Parker sold invisible versions on their website.
When I first watched the Schumer video, I thought maybe he was talking into a cell phone camera or a 4G/wifi tablet he may have had in the chair but then I remembered the rules prohibit any of that, and he’s not going to break that one while sitting so close to McConnell. Also, he sat down immediately after gesturing without picking anything up off the chair, so there couldn’t have been any recording devices in it.
So … what other explanations are there?
Twitter users took some guesses:
@SenSchumer shoved that lady forward by McConnell while telling her something. Then he went to his chair, used a hand gesture while expressing anger to the lady with blonde hair, then plopped in his chair pissed 😡 Looked like workplace abuse to me.
— Ann Sanders (@AnnSand72250302) January 22, 2020
The way he flopped down in that seat he looked like he was going to set out on main Street and watch the cars go up and down. This is all wearing him out and taking a toll on him. Lying and deceiving people takes a lot out of you. Lol
— Gary LaVelle (@3mgary) January 22, 2020
Yep. Look at his glasses. He was looking over the top of them. I’m not trying to defend the guy because I can’t stand him but I’m just trying to be rational. pic.twitter.com/7GPBNOxvq4
— WWG1WGA Texas (@Ten_Foil_Hat) January 22, 2020
Maybe he was in facetime illegally with someone
— Footy Fun (@itsadoodleparty) January 22, 2020
Looks like he mentioned something to the lady who appears to be a stenographer and sits next to his chair. The desk in front is empty. Maybe to keep an eye on the stenographer.
— Marian (@Marian79890912) January 22, 2020
It is crystal clear, he is over wrought with burnout.
— Pamela (@hemp17347088) January 22, 2020
— Sarahi Hannah Estephani (@SHEtheAuthor) January 22, 2020
Now that’s a distinct possibility!
Whatever the case may be, the real issue here is how once Schumer sat down, he did the manspreading thing. Come on, man! 😉