News and Commentary

NOT OVER? Klobuchar Says Democrats Won’t Stop Fighting For Witnesses, Look To Extend Trial
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) prepares for television interview in spin room after the Democratic presidential primary debate at Drake University on January 14, 2020 in Des Moines, Iowa.
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Following the Senate vote to block witnesses in the partisan impeachment of President Donald Trump, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) signaled that Democrats have not been deterred by the vote, but will continue to prolong the process for new witnesses.

“The caucuses are meeting right now,” Klobuchar told CNN’s Dana Bash following the vote.

“Right now we’re looking at amendments that we could do to maybe be more specific about witnesses, or getting more time. … Maybe with each and every day it will change their mind on allowing witnesses,” the presidential candidate continued.

“So, that’s what we’re working on right now,” she added.

The senator made similar comments during an appearance on Fox News, Friday evening.

“If you don’t have witnesses, you do not have a fair trial,” Klobuchar also posted to her Twitter account after the vote. “The truth will come out.”

The Senate voted 51-49 to block witnesses, seemingly paving the way for President Trump’s acquittal. Republican Senators Mitt Romney (UT) and Susan Collins (ME) both defected, joining the Democrats to vote in favor of new witnesses.

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) was fuming after the vote, calling the moment a “grand tragedy.”

“To not allow a witness, a document, no witnesses, no documents, in an impeachment trial is a perfidy,” Schumer told reporters.

“It’s a grand tragedy, one of the worst tragedies that the Senate has ever overcome,” he added.

Before the vote, Schumer saw the writing on the wall and likened a vote to stop new witnesses to Watergate.

“If my Republican colleagues refuse to even consider witnesses and documents in this trial, this country is headed towards the greatest cover-up since Watergate,” the leading Democrat railed, according to The Hill.

“If my Republican colleagues refuse to even consider witnesses and documents in the trial, what will the president conclude?” he added. “We all know: he’ll conclude he can do it again, and congress can do nothing about it. He can try to cheat in his election again, something that eats at the roots of our democracy.”

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), a moderate Republican swing vote, said she voted to stop the partisan impeachment process after she determined that there would not be a “fair trial,” noting that “Congress has failed.”

“I worked for a fair, honest, and transparent process, modeled after the Clinton trial, to provide ample time for both sides to present their cases, ask thoughtful questions, and determine whether we need more. The House chose to send articles of impeachment that are rushed and flawed. I carefully considered the need for additional witnesses and documents, to cure the shortcoming, but ultimately decided that I will vote against considering motions to subpoena,” a statement from Murkowski said.

“Given the partisan nature of this impeachment from the very beginning and throughout, I have come to the conclusion that there will be no fair trial in the Senate. I don’t believe the continuation of this process will change anything,” the senator added. “It is sad for me to admit that, as an institution, the Congress has failed.”