Chief Justice John Roberts is far from the impartial savior Democrats are hoping he'll be: PBS host
Chief Justice John Roberts/Screenshot

During an MSNBC panel discussion Sunday evening, Alexander Heffner, PBS host of "The Open Mind," cautioned against putting faith in Chief Justice John Roberts.

In an interview with Rev. Al Sharpton, Heffner outlined why Roberts' impartiality isn't exactly what Democrats think it is.

"But I'm tired of hearing about Chief Justice Roberts impartiality, this idea that he's some kind of paragon of constitutional order," Heffner said. "The proof is in the pudding. The reality is this Supreme Court had an opportunity to review the cases about whether the public should have access to Trump's business and personal tax returns, whether the public should have the testimony of [John] Bolton and company."

He noted that in those cases, the High Court refused to give a decision in a timely manner. If they had released a decision on whether the White House can ignore a subpoena, Roberts likely wouldn't be put in this position.

"So, the Chief Justice knows, he's intelligent, that he's presiding over this trial where there's incomplete evidence in part because of his own cover for the Republican Party," Heffner continued. "This is a Chief Justice who sided with the majority that took voters off the rolls in Ohio for no other reason than they didn't vote or they moved. He sided against marriage equality. Let's understand this so-called judicial temperament. It may look like it, but it's not the reality of the experience, and the Democrats ought to be super watchful of this because we know this game from [Brett] Kavanaugh, from [Neil] Gorsuch. We know what game he's playing to give the Republicans cover."

He concluded by saying that there's no doubt in his mind that those decisions by the Supreme Court matter far more because the case against Trump is so clear-cut.

"We know Trump made the call. We know it," he said. "What we don't have access to yet as the public is the tax returns and the expanded testimonies that would show the pervasiveness of the unconstitutionality."

Watch the full panel from MSNBC below: