As House Democrats prepare to pass articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, Senate Republicans, led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), are said to be working behind the scenes to pass a set of rules that would hinder an effective prosecution of the president.
But former Justice Department official Matthew Miller noted Saturday on “AM Joy” that passing such rules could be difficult and that the defection of even one or two senators who are up for reelection could leave McConnell without a way to protect Trump:
“If Mitch McConnell has his way, you can expect him to behave like a House Republican. I think the question really is whether he can get all — every member of his caucus or his conference to go along with him, because he can only do that if he has 51 senators who will vote to hold this kind of, you know, ridiculous trial where you might see Joe Biden called to testify or — so if he wants to produce that kind of trial, he can do it if his caucus hangs together.”
Miller added that senators such as Susan Collins (R-ME) and Mitt Romney (R-UT) could be obstacles to what McConnell wants to do:
“I think it’s why Democrats in the Senate are going to have to take this argument to the American people, that there needs to be a fair trial in the Senate, there needs to be an appropriate trial, so there’s pressure on people like Susan Collins to make sure that’s true. If Mitt Romney and Susan Collins — I don’t have a lot of faith in her, but let’s say Mitt Romney and three others vote against any kind of efforts by McConnell to limit the fairness of this trial, then he can’t do it.”
Trump says he cannot wait for impeachment to move to the Senate. But he may soon find out he doesn’t have the protection he expects to save him from removal from office once it gets there.
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