Senate Majority Leader (R-KY) apparently has enough Republican votes to change the rules for the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
CNN reported on Tuesday that McConnell has the support of so-called moderate Republicans in the Senate, including Sens. Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Mitt Romney.
McConnell believes that he can change the Senate rules ahead of Trump’s trial with a simple majority of 51 senators. Ahead of President Bill Clinton’s 1999 trial, senators voted for the rules 100-0. But it is unlikely many senators will cross party lines for Trump’s trial.
Democrats have called for a “fair” Senate trial with witnesses. But McConnell has said that he favors beginning a trial before deciding whether or not to have witnesses.
Meanwhile, multiple Senate Dems saying now that it's clear GOP is dug in against witness deal, it's time to send the articles and start the trial.
"I think the time has past. She should send the articles over," said @ChrisMurphyCT https://t.co/MIUFSFkxnn
— Mike DeBonis (@mikedebonis) January 7, 2020
NEW: Mitch McConnell is expected to announce today that he'll move ahead on approving rules for Trump's Senate trial without negotiating them with Democrats, according to two sources familiar with his plans.https://t.co/2lWLoFcsRx
— Axios (@axios) January 7, 2020
NEW: Lindsey Graham says Mitch McConnell announced at closed-door GOP lunch that they have the 51 votes needed to start impeachment trial under Clinton rules.
— Paul McLeod (@pdmcleod) January 7, 2020