Democrats call for Bolton to testify in impeachment trial

Democrats call for Bolton to testify in impeachment trial

"Ambassador Bolton essentially confirms the president committed the offenses charged in the first article of impeachment".

White House officials have said that they would invoke executive privilege in the event the Senate votes to call Bolton as a witness in the impeachment trial, creating the possibility of a lengthy court battle that could delay the resolution of the trial for months.

The Senate impeachment trial resumes Monday afternoon, with White House lawyers continuing their opening arguments in response to arguments by House Democrat impeachment managers last week. An additional 4 percent, 54 percent in total, said the president should be impeached but not removed from office in the poll released on December 19 - the day after the House of Representatives voted to impeach Trump. Trump and the White House dismissed the whistleblower complaint that started it all, as well as the accounts of those officials, as "secondhand" and hearsay. The Senate is now conducting a trial to determine whether to convict Trump under the articles of impeachment.

Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) was more cautious in her support for calling Bolton to the stand, saying she was always "likely to vote to call witnesses" in an impeachment trial.

Hearing from first-hand witnesses in the Senate trial is now a necessity.

Bolton writes that he heard Trump say explicitly that the withholding of military aid would continue until Ukraine announced an investigation involving the Bidens - implicating Trump directly in a quid pro quo for the first time and contradicting the Trump team's defense. Trump is also accused of obstructing congressional review of his Ukraine-related actions.

Trump denied the claims in a series of tweets early Monday.

"I NEVER told John Bolton that the aid to Ukraine was tied to investigations into Democrats, including the Bidens".

"...he never complained about this at the time of his very public termination".

This means that the trial could be in limbo for some time if the Senate decides to subpoena Bolton, especially given the legal battles that may ensue from any potential White House attempts to block the testimony. "Any assertion to the contrary is unfounded speculation", Bolton said in a statement.

Do motives matter? Certainly not to Democrats, who will be as happy to trade on revelations Bolton has made out of spite as they were with past Trump defectors.

Mr Trump told reporters last week that he did not want Mr Bolton to testify. "Now we see why".

Schiff, D-Calif., is chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and the lead impeachment manager. A spokeswoman for Mr. Barr denied that he learned of the call from Mr. Bolton; the Justice Department has said he learned about it only in mid-August. "The president is clearly trying to hide the truth here".

Those sentiments were echoed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. It goes right to the heart of the charges against the president. Now it's in the Senate GOP's hands, and you can bet it's a tougher call now.

Romney says Bolton "has relevant testimony" and it is "increasingly apparent it is important to hear" from him.

Democratic lawmaker Adam Schiff, who is leading the prosecution in the impeachment trial of Donald Trump, said Sunday he felt threatened by a tweet from the president. "Let alone about Ukraine security assistance", White House deputy counsel Mike Purpura said.

House impeachment manager Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) speaks during impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on January 22, 2020.

Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal attorney who was his point man in negotiations with Ukraine that House witnesses said Bolton referred to as a "drug deal", responded to the reports of the Bolton manuscript, besmirching the former national security adviser.

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