There has been much chatter around whether or not witnesses will be called to testify in President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell bearing little interest, revealing that he is ready to move things along without the guarantee of Democratic testimonies. Sen. Cory Booker, however, has pretty much called the idea preposterous, comparing there being no witnesses at the president’s impeachment trial to a juror sitting on a trial that doesn’t have any witnesses.
Booker spoke on SiriusXM’s “The Joe Madison Show” and shared his thoughts on the current back-and-forth over witness testimonies. “If you were a juror at a big trial, and they told you firsthand witnesses that saw what happened, material fact witnesses, are not there, you would be offended as a juror, like ‘what the hell…they’re not at the trial,’ that’s insane. It makes no sense,” he said.
The House of Representatives voted to impeach the president on Dec. 18, making Trump the third president in U.S. history to be impeached. He was charged with “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Still, the Senate trial may face a delay as lawmakers are not solid on how they will proceed.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi signaled a standoff with Republicans over the terms of the trial because she was not ready to send over the impeachment articles to the Senate. Pelosi announced on Friday that the articles will be sent next week.
“I have asked Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler to be prepared to bring to the Floor next week a resolution to appoint managers and transmit articles of impeachment to the Senate,” Pelosi said in a letter directed towards Democrats in the House of Representatives.
It is uncertain when the trial will begin, although it appears that McConnell wants to get the show on the road as he has already secured support from the Republicans for his plan to enforce a framework similar to that of Bill Clinton’s 1999 impeachment trial.
That said, Booker says he would rather be in Iowa than sit for the impeachment hearing. “Having to be down in impeachment number one is bad for America, it’s sad for America, and I wish this wasn’t happening. And so I swore an oath to do my job…but I would much rather be making my case to Iowans,” Booker said.
He described the evidence against Trump as “damning,” but stands firm on doing his duties as a member of the Senate.
Booker added, “I will sit there with an open mind, evaluating the evidence put before me.”