‘I believe that we’ll be able to move to a verdict…’
(Claire Russel, Liberty Headlines) GOP leadership is confident they have the votes to block the Democrats from calling additional witnesses, according to The Hill.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., met with his party on Wednesday, and the impression left was that the Senate would vote to finish the impeachment trial of President Trump this Friday.
Democrats — if they remain unified — need four Republican votes to call additional witnesses, potentially including former national security adviser John Bolton.
It’s likely Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Mitt Romney, R-Utah, will vote with the Democrats, but Republicans are now sure that those will be the only two votes McConnell will lose.
“I think I can say the mood is good,” said Sen. Mike Braun, R-Ind., after his meeting with McConnell. “If I had to guess, no witnesses. We’ll be in a place where I think everyone is going to have their mind made up and I believe that we’ll be able to move to a verdict, and the witness question will be clear at that point.”
Earlier this week, it appeared McConnell would lose the vote to the Democrats.
The Wall Street Journal reported that at least five Republican senators were considering voting to call Bolton, but the White House remained hopeful that McConnell would be able to reach a compromise.
One suggestion floated, which Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., supports, would allow senators to obtain copies of Bolton’s unreleased memoir.
Some Republicans believe Bolton’s memoir pushed the vote count in the Democrats’ direction, according to the Journal, and some have even accused Bolton of deliberately coordinating with the media to sway the Senate’s decision.
Bolton’s team has denied the allegations.
“Ambassador John Bolton, Simon & Schuster, and Javelin Literary categorically state that there was absolutely no coordination with the New York Times or anyone else regarding the appearance of information about his book, THE ROOM WHERE IT HAPPENED, at online booksellers,” longtime Bolton aide Sarah Tinsley said in a statement.