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Democrats Demand More Witnesses In Senate; McConnell Responds With Brutal Reminder, Pelosi Quote
U.S. President Donald Trump (C) speaks to members of the media as Senate Majority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (L), and Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) (R) look on after he arrived at a Senate Republican weekly policy luncheon at the U.S. Capitol March 26, 2019 in Washington, DC. Congressional top Democrats have demanded Attorney General William Barr to release special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation report for the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Photo credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images

In a letter leaked to the press Sunday night, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) spelled out the Democrats’ demands for the all-but-inevitable impeachment trial in the Senate, including a list of new witnesses Democrats insist on interrogating. In response, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell delivered a statement on the Senate floor Tuesday rejecting the Democrats’ demands and reminding them about how the impeachment process works.

“We don’t create impeachments, Mr. President. We judge them,” said McConnell, in comments reported by Axios. “The House chose this road. It is their duty to investigate. It’s their duty to meet the very high bar for undoing a national election.”

McConnell then used Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s own words against her. “As Speaker Pelosi herself once said, it is the House’s obligation to, quote, ‘build an ironclad case to act,'” said McConnell.

“If they fail, they fail,” he added. “It is not the Senate’s job to leap into the breach and search desperately for ways to get to guilty. That would hardly be impartial justice.”

In the letter, that was leaked to the press, Schumer demands that Democrats have the ability to subpoena witnesses, including key White House witness, among them acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and former national security advisor John Bolton. The Democrats also insist on the ability to present evidence.

“In the trial of President Clinton, the House Managers were permitted to call witnesses, and it is clear that the Senate should hear testimony of witnesses in this trial as well,” Schumer wrote. “I propose, pursuant to our rules, that the Chief Justice on behalf of the Senate issue subpoenas for testimony by the following witnesses with direct knowledge of Administration decisions regarding the delay in security assistance funds to the government of Ukraine and the requests for certain investigations to be announced by the government of Ukraine: Robert Blair, Senior Advisor to the Acting White House Chief of Staff; Mick Mulvaney, Acting White House Chief of Staff; John Bolton, former National Security Advisor; and Michael Duffey, Associate Director for National Security, Office of Management and Budget.”

Schumer, apparently assuming the role of majority leader, told McConnell that the Democrats would also be “open” to hearing testimony from other witnesses, if need be. “We would of course be open to hearing the testimony of additional witnesses having direct knowledge of the administration’s decisions regarding the delay in security assistance funds to the government of Ukraine and the requests for certain investigations to be announced by the government of Ukraine, if the president’s counsel or House Managers identify such witnesses,” said Schumer.

But, as his statement on the Senate floor Tuesday made clear, McConnell, isn’t going to let the minority party dictate terms, and he is certainly not going to do the House Democrats’ job for them after the fact. The Democrats, McConnell and his fellow Republicans maintain, have “rushed” the investigative process and obstinately refused to pursue subpoenas through the court, resulting in the failure to hear from some witnesses the Senate Democrats now insist on interviewing.

As Axios notes, McConnell also ripped Schumer for sending a letter that was conveniently leaked to the press rather than simply meeting with him in person to discuss the process.

As The Daily Wire reported, Schumer was hit with strong backlash for his apparent reversal on the Senate calling witnesses. Ahead of the Clinton impeachment trial, Schumer opposed calling witnesses. “It seems to me that no good case has been made for witnesses,” Schumer said during a press conference. “I wonder if the House managers aren’t a little more interested in political theater than in actually getting to the bottom of the facts,” he insisted later.

In an attempt to defend his flip-flop, Schumer said during a press conference Monday that the Clinton impeachment trial was “a different case” and there were “obvious reasons why they did not want a witness like Monica Lewinsky testifying in public,” including that “children would be watching.”

Related: Senate GOP Fires Back At Schumer Over Impeachment Trial, May Call Hunter Biden As Witness

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Democrats Demand More Witnesses In Senate; McConnell Responds With Brutal Reminder, Pelosi Quote