In anticipation of deposition, Trump suggests not having it

WASHINGTON >> President Donald Trump says the Senate should simply reject the accusation case against him, an extraordinary suggestion as the House prepares to pass the charge on to the chamber for the historic trial.

The Republican President gives mixed messages prior to the House’s milestone vote that will start the Senate procedure in a few days, only the third trial of presidential accusation in American history. Trump is confronted with allegations that he has abused power by forcing Ukraine to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden and subsequently impeding Congress.

First Trump presented his own ideas for litigation witnesses, then he almost said the opposite Sunday by tweeting that the trial should not take place at all.


“Many believe that by giving the Senate faith in a trial” about indictments, he calls a hoax, tweet Trump, “instead of a complete resignation, it gives the partisan Democrat Witch Hunt credibility that it would otherwise not have. There I am agree!”

The idea of ​​rejecting the accusations against Trump is as unusual as it is unlikely. Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell signed an outlier proposal that circulated among conservative senators last week, but he does not have enough support in the room held by the Republicans to actually do it. It would require a rare change in the rules, similar to McConnell’s approach to Supreme Court confirmations.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned Sunday that senators will “pay a price” if they block new witness statements with a process that Americans consider a “cover-up” for Trump’s actions.

“It’s a fair trial,” Pelosi told ABC’s “This week.” “The senators who are now considering voting for witnesses or not will have to be responsible.”

She said, “Now the ball is in their court to do that or pay a prize.”

Voters are divided on deposition largely along the highly independent lines of the country and the process becomes a high-stakes enterprise at the start of a presidential election year.

A vote in the House to pass the articles to the Senate will put an end to a distance between Pelosi and McConnell about the rules for the trial. The house voted last month to accuse Trump.

But ending one confrontation only starts another in the entire Capitol as the parties try to establish the conditions for debate on high crimes and crimes.

Democrats want a new testimony, in particular from the former White House security adviser, John Bolton, who has indicated that he will defy Trump’s orders and appear when summoned.

Trump does not want his brash former assistant to testify. Republican allies led by McConnell, R-Ky., Are ready to deliver acquittal quickly without new testimony.

Trump first said Sunday that it is the chairman of Pelosi and House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff, who should both testify, which is unlikely.

The president said he should not bear the “stigma” of accusation because he did nothing wrong. Pelosi said the House vote last month means that Trump will be “deposed forever” and “for life.”

McConnell is reluctant to participate in a divided senate debate about witnesses who can split his party and extend a trial that is expected to take weeks of floor time.

He seeks a quick acquittal and has proposed a trial similar to the 1999 Clinton presidential accusation trial that would initiate the procedure and vote later on hearing new testimonials.

A prominent Republican, Senator Lindsey Graham from South Carolina, has already predicted that the trial would end “within a few days”. “Graham and Senator Josh Hawley, R-Mo. Are leading the attempt to reject the allegations against Trump.

Trump postponed nearly $ 400 million in assistance as Ukraine fought the border against Russia, while instructing the country’s new president to investigate political rival Joe Biden. Trump pays a lot of attention to a conspiracy theory that his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani pushed over Biden and his son Hunter Biden, who served on the board of a gas company in Ukraine, while his father was vice-president. There is no evidence of misconduct by the Bidens.

Some GOP senators want to avert the process of depositing the case of the Democrats and follow Giuliani’s theories. GOP Senator Rick Scott from Florida said Sunday that he wants to hear about the Bidens “and find out – find out.”

At least one Republican for re-election, Senator Susan Collins from Maine, said last week that she was talking to GOP colleagues about a process that would allow them to hear more testimonials as democrats want.

The Democratic House has not yet set the timing of this week’s vote to send the accusation articles to the Senate. Pelosi will meet behind closed doors with House Democrats to decide the next steps on Tuesday morning prior to that party’s primary presidential debate that evening, the last for the Iowa caucuses on February 3.

As soon as the senate led by the republicans receives the charge, the trial is expected to begin soon.

Although some Democrats have grumbled about the delay, Pelosi and other party leaders defended the strategy and said it provided new potential evidence and drew public attention to the coming process.

“One of the things that succeeded in retaining the articles was McConnell’s elaboration and the president’s desire to hide this,” said Schiff, D-Calif, on CBS “Face the Nation.”

Bolton’s remarks, recalled by witnesses in the House Investigation, could cut off several testimonies. He would have compared the Ukrainian actions with a “drug deal” of which he did not want to be a part and warned that Giuliani was a “hand grenade” about to go off.

House Democrats, who did not issue a summons to Bolton last year, do not rule this out. Pelosi also left the door open to submit more accusation articles against Trump.

“Let’s be optimistic about the future … a future that Donald Trump will somehow not have in the White House. In ten months we will have an election if we don’t have him removed earlier,” she said.