27/09/2020

Senate Democrats are shooting down chatter about trying to set up an agreement that wo…

Senate Democrats are shooting down chatter about trying to set up an agreement that would guarantee former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonThe Hill’s Morning Report – Trump trial begins with clashes, concessionsTrump says impeachment lawyers were ‘really good’Senate Republicans muscle through rules for Trump trialMORE testifies in the impeachment trial in exchange for former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSanders joins Biden atop 2020 Democratic field: pollThe Hill’s Morning Report – Trump trial begins with clashes, concessionsTrump says impeachment lawyers were ‘really good’MORE’s son Hunter Biden also testifying. 
The idea where if Bolton is called, Trump would get to call Hunter Biden has been floated by conservatives, who argue there should be “witness reciprocity” for both sides.
Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerDemocratic senator blasts ‘draconian’ press restrictions during impeachment trialFeds seek 25-year sentence for Coast Guard officer accused of targeting lawmakers, justicesClinton: McConnell’s rules like ‘head juror colluding with the defendant to cover up a crime’MORE (D-N.Y.), asked about a potential swap, argued that “witnesses should have something to do with and direct knowledge of the charges against the president.”
“You know, we dont need to have witnesses that have nothing to do with this that are trying to distract Americans from the truth,” Schumer said.
Pressed again if he would cut a deal on witnesses, Schumer added, right now we havent heard them wanting any witnesses at all.
Sen. Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenImpeachment trial begins with furor over rulesFox’s Bill Hemmer sees sizable viewer increase for debut in Shep Smith’s former time slotRoberts under pressure from both sides in witness fightMORE (D-Md.), asked about a potential deal during an interview with MSNBC, indicated he would not support a Biden-for-Bolton swap, calling Hunter Bien a “total sideshow.”
“Focusing on Hunter Biden just furthers the entire scheme … Trump put forward,” Van Hollen said.
The Washington Post, citing unnamed sources, said there was a discussion among some Democrats about supporting a deal that would allow Bolton to testify in exchange for Hunter Biden testifying.
Sen. Chris CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsWhat to watch for on Day 2 of Senate impeachment trialBroad, bipartisan rebuke for proposal to pull troops from AfricaDemocrats: McConnell impeachment trial rules a ‘cover-up,’ ‘national disgrace’MORE (D-Del.) distanced himself from the story during an interview with CNN’s “New Day,” saying such a deal “would mean trading a relevant witness who should be testifying for a witness who has nothing to do with the charges against the president.”
“There was some mistake in reporting in another news outlet that suggested somehow, I was part of a group that was trying to cut some deal … I’m not involved in a conversation like that,” he said.
Coons added in a tweet that the witnesses “have to be relevant to the case.”
“It isnt complicated. The President is on trial here, not anyone with the last name Biden. VP Biden and Hunter Biden are not relevant witnesses,” he tweeted.
The idea of a swap, instead, has largely been floated by Trump, and his allies on Capitol Hill. They say they want to call Hunter Biden to testify if Democrats are able to win over the four Republican senators needed to call Bolton to testify.
 Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneySenate Republicans muscle through rules for Trump trialSenate blocks push to subpoena Bolton in impeachment trialImpeachment trial begins with furor over rulesMORE (R-Utah) has said that he wants to hear from Bolton, meanwhile Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiSenate Republicans muscle through rules for Trump trialSenate blocks push to subpoena Bolton in impeachment trialImpeachment trial begins with furor over rulesMORE (R-Alaska) and Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsThe Hill’s Morning Report – Trump trial begins with clashes, concessionsSenate Republicans muscle through rules for Trump trialCollins breaks with GOP on attempt to change impeachment rules resolutionMORE (R-Maine) have indicated they are open to calling witnesses though they have not specifically said they would support calling any individual.
Under the rules resolution passed by the Senate earlier Wednesday morning, senators will have an up-or-down vote on whether or not it will be in order to call witnesses or request additional documents.
If 51 senators vote to allow witnesses to be called, both sides would then be able to make motions on individuals, which would be voted on by the Senate.
Republicans, technically, would not need support from Democrats if they wanted to call Hunter Biden, who has emerged as a top target for Republicans because of his work on the board of a Ukrainian gas company. McConnell has 53 Republican votes and could call the younger Biden if he was able to hold together 51 members of his caucus.
Van Hollen floated that while the idea of a Bolton-Biden swap might be supported by some Republicans, the broader caucus does not want Hunter Biden to testify.
“We don’t even know if something that they really want,” he said. “There may be one or two Republicans that want that, but that’s very different than Republicans wanting that.”