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Senate Rejects Witnesses, 51-49

Meanwhile, more Bolton allegations emerge from upcoming memoir
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 31, 2020 12:13 PM CST
Updated Jan 31, 2020 5:02 PM CST
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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell arrives at the US Capitol Friday.   (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

(Newser) – The Senate will not call witnesses to the impeachment trial. Senators rejected the measure 51-49 on Friday, with the GOP's Mitt Romney and Susan Collins the only Republicans to vote with Democrats. The outcome had effectively been sealed earlier Friday when GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski said she would vote against calling witnesses, reports NBC News. Coupled with Lamar Alexander's same announcement Thursday night, that gave Mitch McConnell the votes he needed to block additional witnesses such as John Bolton. But will the trial be wrapped up in the wee hours of Friday as some have speculated? Maybe not. Coverage:

  • Next week? Politico reports that GOP senators and aides are warning that the trial might extend into next week after all. The proceedings could go on until Wednesday, meaning they would not be over before Trump's State of the Union address on Tuesday and the Iowa caucuses on Monday. This would allow for lengthy closing arguments from both sides, as well as speeches from senators from the chamber's floor.
  • More from Bolton: The New York Times has more details from the former national security adviser's upcoming memoir that relates to the impeachment trial. Bolton writes that Trump asked him for help pressuring Ukraine to investigate politico foes two months before the president's famous phone call with Ukraine's president. This would mark the earliest known such effort by Trump. Bolton asserts that Trump asked him to make sure Ukraine's president met with Rudy Giuliani.
  • And more: Bolton also wrote that top White House aides including chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, Giuliani, and White House counsel Pat Cipollone (who is defending Trump in the trial) were in the room at the time. Giuliani called the claim "categorically untrue."

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