Mitch McConnell to vote to acquit – Deadline

UPDATE, 7:20 am PT: Democrats pursuing the case against Donald Trump have decided to call at least one witness in Donald Trump’s impeachment trial.

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) said impeachment officials wanted to subpoena the testimony of Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA), one of the sources for a CNN report that Trump, during of a phone call with minority parliamentary leader Kevin McCarthy, was not concerned about the siege on Capitol Hill as it unfolded on Jan.6.

Raskin said they would also be looking for Beutler’s notes on the conversation.

According to to the CNN report, McCarthy begged Trump to call the rioters as the Capitol was attacked, but Trump told him, “Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset than you are about the election.” The report was based on accounts from lawmakers who were made aware of the appeal.

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One of Trump’s attorneys, Michael Van der Veen, reacted angrily to the new development, arguing that “if they want to have witnesses I’m going to want over 100 depositions.” He even asked that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Kamala Harris be dropped off in his office. Democrats laughed after the comment.

“Now is the time to end this, now is the time to hear the pleadings,” he said.

The Senate then proceeded to a vote on whether to allow witnesses at trial.

It had appeared Democrats wanted to move quickly through the trial without calling any witnesses, as it seemed unlikely that the extension of the proceedings would sway enough Republican votes to convict … But the revelation of the Trump-McCarthy appeal has changed this equation. Raskin said the call was essential in showing Trump’s state of mind as the siege unfolded.

Trump was impeached over an article inciting an insurgency.

PREVIOUSLY: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell plans to vote to acquit Donald Trump in the Senate impeachment trial, multiple media reported on Saturday.

This makes it all the more likely that Trump will not be convicted, with a vote possible later in the afternoon.

Politico and other sources rcarried that he informed his colleagues in a letter of his decision. While criticizing Trump’s conduct on January 6, McConnell has so far declined to say which direction he is leaning. During the trial, he looked straight ahead as impeachment officials and Trump’s legal team presented their case.

The trial will resume on Saturday morning with final arguments, unless those responsible for the prosecution move to call witnesses. The Senate has set aside four hours for closing arguments, meaning a vote could take place by mid-afternoon.

There have been further calls for Democrats to call witnesses after a CNN report on Friday that revealed details of a call Trump had with parliamentary minority leader Kevin McCarthy.

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