Patrick Leahy
Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., the president pro tempore of the Senate, pauses in a corridor off the Rotunda as he awaits the article of impeachment against Donald Trump to be delivered, at the Capitol in Washington, Monday, Jan. 25, 2021 Image Credit: AP

Washington: The 80-year-old senator presiding over the impeachment trial of Donald Trump was briefly hospitalized Tuesday after sounding hoarse and unwell while being sworn in.

Patrick Leahy, who was elected in 1974, is presiding over the trial as he is the senior senator of the party with the majority in the Senate, currently the Democrats.

"After getting test results back, and after a thorough examination, Senator Leahy now is home. He looks forward to getting back to work," his spokesman said in a statement.

The 100 senators will serve as jurors in the trial in which former president Trump is accused of "incitement to insurrection" in the run-up to the violent storming of Congress by his supporters on January 6. The trial is due to open on February 9.

Democrats are expected to struggle to persuade 17 Republican senators - the number needed for the required two-thirds majority - to vote to convict Trump.