A whopping 75 percent of Americans indicated they wanted witnesses to testify in President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, a new Quinnipiac University poll revealed Tuesday. But Republicans have decided to ignore the overwhelming majority of Americans and block witnesses, according to NBC News reporter Geoff Bennett.
“Mitch McConnell currently appears to have the votes he needs to avoid calling trial witnesses,” Bennett tweeted Tuesday after the trial ended for the day. “Even as the GOP messaging on the witness question seems to be: We’ll make a determination after the Q&A period.'”
Mitch McConnell currently appears to have the votes he needs to avoid calling trial witnesses, based on our reporting and conversations with lawmakers this evening — even as the GOP messaging on the witness question seems to be: “We’ll make a determination after the Q&A period.”
— Geoff Bennett (@GeoffRBennett) January 28, 2020
The same poll also revealed an overwhelming loss of support for Republicans among independent voters.
Other reporters have disputed the claim, saying that McConnell says he doesn’t have the votes.
NEWS — McConnell told his members that he did not yet have enough votes to be able to kill the witness vote, expected Friday, according to people familiar. Yet several 2020ers spoke, saying they're ready to move on to final vote, move on from the trial.
— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) January 28, 2020
By contrast, the Wall Street Journal reported McConnell claimed earlier today that he didn’t think he had the votes.
“Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said the vote total wasn’t where it needed to be on blocking witnesses or documents, these people said. He had a card with ‘yes,’ ‘no,’ and ‘maybes’ marked on it, apparently a whip count, but he didn’t show it to senators.”
After other accounts surfaced about where Republicans were, Bennett retracted his claim, saying that the situation is obviously fluid.