The Senate voted 55-45 Saturday to extend former President Donald Trump’s impeachment by calling for witnesses. Five republicans locked arms with Democrats to vote for witnesses. Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Mitt Romney, Ben Sasse, and Lindsey Graham all voted yes. Graham initially voted no, but flipped yes.
Graham switched his vote from no to yes once he saw that the Democrats had a majority. Prior to the vote Saturday, Graham threatened to draw out the impeachment with “many, many witnesses” if the Senate voted yes.
Witnesses were not originally planned for Trump’s second impeachment, but the vote now permits the debate on what witnesses can be called and what rules the Senate will apply, according to NBC News.
House impeachment managers decided they wanted to hear from Republican Washington Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, who released a statement Friday night claiming House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy called Trump during the Jan. 6 riot and Trump initially sided with the people who stormed the Capitol.
Beutler claims Trump told McCarthy, “Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are.”
Trump defense attorney Michael Van der Veen threatened to drag out proceedings if the Democrats voted for witnesses.
“If they want to have witnesses, I’m going to need at least 100 depositions, not just one,” Van der Veen said.
Redstate’s Kyle Becker reported shortly after the vote that the Trump defense team will “seek to subpoena D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser and Nancy Pelosi if Dems call witnesses.”