Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.
Senate Republicans falsely suggest they already heard impeachment witnesses
Donald Trump’s Senate impeachment trial has included testimony from zero fact witnesses.
The Senate Republican majority is all but set to vote to acquit Donald Trump in his impeachment trial, without hearing any witness testimony whatsoever.
Despite this, many senators have been misleadingly suggesting that witness testimony was in fact part of the trial.
The Senate Republican Communications Center, part of Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office, posted a list of “Senate Trial Facts” Friday afternoon, intended to demonstrate why the GOP believed it was “time to move on.”
“13 witnesses testified,” they claimed in an infographic, adding that there were also “179 Senator questions.”
While testimony from fact witnesses from the House impeachment inquiry was presented as part of the impeachment managers’ and defense lawyers’ cases, no one testified as part of the Senate trial. And none of the senators’ questions were directed to any of those fact witnesses.
Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) made a similar misleading argument in a video Friday. “I’m a no vote on additional witnesses,” she said. “We’ve had the testimony of 17 people.”
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) also announced in a video that she would vote no when the Senate considers “whether we have a need to have more witnesses.” She reasoned, “We’ve already had 17 witnesses.”
In a written statement, Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) agreed, saying he did not believe “additional witnesses are needed.”
Poll after poll has shown overwhelming popular support for a fair Senate trial that would include witness testimony.
Sens. Lisa Murkowksi (R-AK) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) announced on Friday that they would oppose witness testimony, effectively clearing the way for McConnell to end the trial without it.
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