The Dems have been looking at four prime witnesses in the Senate impeachment trial, if they can get them to testify. Donald Trump has ordered anyone in the White House to refuse to testify. He also managed to keep even one document from moving from the administration to the impeachment investigation or hearing — that is until now.
The four potential witnesses are Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, top National Security Adviser to Mulvaney Robert Blair, former National Security Adviser John Bolton, and Associate Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB)l Michael Duffey.
Then, something broke through. Democrats also wanted the Ukraine-related documents to be released to them. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schummer said, according to The Washington Examiner:
‘This new evidence also raises questions that can only be answered by having the key Trump administration officials—Mick Mulvaney, John Bolton, Michael Duffey and Robert Blair—testify under oath in a Senate trial.’
These unredacted emails between the White House Office of Management and Budget and the Pentagon proved the president wanted to delay aid to Ukraine. One of them showed Duffey telling the acting Pentagon comptroller:
‘[There was] clear direction from POTUS to hold [the aid.]’
Schumer used the “newly released emails” to support his claim that Donald Trump decided to hold the direly-needed military aid to Ukraine. The Senate Minority Leader said these “unredacted emails” underscored the need for witnesses:
‘The newly-revealed unredacted emails are a devastating blow to Senator McConnell’s push to have a trial without the documents and witnesses we’ve requested. These emails further expose the serious concerns raised by Trump administration officials about the propriety and legality of the president’s decision to cut off aid to Ukraine to benefit himself.’
Duffey’s email indicated that there had been a “clear direction from POTUS to continue to hold.” This added to the evidence against the president. It also meant that the Senate should subpoena the witnesses and documents at the beginning of the trial. Schumer said:
‘This only further implicates President Trump and underscores the need for the Senate to subpoena the witnesses and documents we’ve requested at the onset of a trial. The American people deserve a fair trial that gets to the truth, not a rigged process that enables a cover-up.’
The Republicans have been urging a quick trial. McConnell liked the idea of few and perhaps no witnesses. He suggested the Senate copy the Clinton impeachment trial in 1999. It had one resolution at the beginning to establish the Senate rules for the trial. Second, he said that a second resolution after the Senate’s opening arguments, which could call any likely witnesses.
Of course, the Democrats would need four Republican members of the Senate to agree with them to meet the 51-vote requirement to call witnesses.
The Mueller Report Adventures: In Bite-Sizes on this Facebook page. These quick, two-minute reads interpret the report in normal English for busy people. Mueller Bite-Sizes uncovers what is essentially a compelling spy mystery. Interestingly enough, Mueller Bite-Sizes can be read in any order.