Impeachment in the United States. Witnesses can drown Trump

Trump's impeachment could end in his victory.

The process of impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump in the Senate may end on January 31, if no decision is made to call witnesses.

Consideration of the impeachment procedure of U.S. President Donald Trump is approaching the end. In the Senate, where the impeachment is considered, representatives of the Republican Party have the majority, and they do their best not to hear witnesses who could cast a shadow on Trump.

The US President is accused of putting pressure on the head of the Ukrainian state for the sake of his own election campaign. Trump denies everything, and his lawyers started to say that if there was any pressure, it was for the sake of “public welfare”, which means that it is not a crime.

Battle for witnesses

Democrats insist on summoning to the Senate former Assistant to President Trump for National Security John Bolton. The decision to call witnesses will be made on Friday, and the Democrats are four votes short.

One of the Republican senators, Lamar Alexander, in his statement Thursday after a long Q&A session, had already admitted that the Democrats had proved Trump's actions to be “inappropriate” but did not believe it was necessary to call witnesses.

The Democrats had hoped that four Republican senators — Lamar, as well as Mitt Romney, Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins — would get the 51 votes needed to call witnesses. Collins joined Romney on Thursday, saying she would also vote to call witnesses.

But Lamar's statement is a sign that Republicans will be able to block the move and complete Trump's trial with the expected acquittal.

The removal of the president requires two-thirds of the vote in the Senate, and Republicans have 53 votes, compared to Democrats 47.

Each side is expected to make closing arguments at the Friday session before the Senate votes to call witnesses. If the Senate decides not to call witnesses, it must hold a final vote on the charge against the President.

If Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer fails to secure a postponement of the vote, and he hinted that he would try on 30 January, Trump is expected to be acquitted on 31 January.

Bolton is the last chance

John Bolton, a former national security adviser to US President Donald Trump, said that the US leader linked the delay in military assistance for Ukraine to the investigation of the son of his political rival Joe Biden.

This was stated in an unpublished manuscript of Bolton's book, which he distributed among his comrades-in-arms. The draft of the book was also sent to the White House. It requires a standard procedure. The book sets out about what former advisor Trump might say if he were subpoenaed in the impeachment case.

According to the former advisor, Trump personally told him about the 391 million defense aid delay in August last year. The book also says that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo admitted that there was no reason to consider the then US ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Jovanovic, corrupt. This is what Trump's lawyer Rudolf Giuliani claimed.

Commenting on the conversation between the US president and Zelensky Bolton in July, Prosecutor-General William Barr expressed concern about the references to lawyer Trump. The latter “was pursuing a shadow policy towards Ukraine”.

During the meeting, where the trip to Kyiv for the inauguration of Zelenskyy was discussed, the head of the White House criticized Ukraine. In his opinion, the Ukrainian officials wanted to “hurt him”. He recalled the conspiracy theory that Ukraine seems to be involved in hacking into the mail of democrats during the 2016 election.

Trump denied the information that Bolton was connected to the investigation of his son Joe Biden.

“I have never told John Bolton that the assistance to Ukraine was connected to an investigation into the activity of the Democrats, including Biden. In fact, he never complained about it during his public dismissal. If John Bolton said that, it was only to sell the book. With this in mind, the transcripts of my calls with President Zelensky are all the necessary evidence, except that President Zelensky and the Ukrainian Foreign Minister said that there was no pressure or problem,” Trump said.

Change of strategy

Under Bolton's pressure, the U.S. President's defense changed its strategy in the Senate litigation and now insists that even if Donald Trump used military aid to pressure Ukraine in his personal interests, it cannot be a reason for impeachment.

The logic of this argument is that Trump considers his re-election a public good for the country — so everything he does to win the election is in the national interest.

At the Senate hearing, one of the presidential defenders, Professor and attorney Alan Dershowitz, said that every politician links his interests to those of the public.

“And if the president has done what he thinks will help him get elected in the public interest, this cannot be the type of quid pro quo through which impeachment is declared,” he said.

What do Americans think...

53 percent of US voters believe that President Donald Trump is not telling the truth about his actions connected to Ukraine.

40% of voters fully trust the president in this matter.

57 percent of voters would like President Trump to provide more detailed information about his actions related to Ukraine. 38 percent of voters believe that the explanations provided by the president are sufficient.

54% of voters believe that Trump has abused power in connection with his actions towards Ukraine, while 42% believe that there have been no abuses.

According to 52% of voters, the delay of the Trump administration in providing American aid to Ukraine was not justified, while 34% believe it was justified.

At the same time, despite the impeachment trial, Trump has the highest support rating since he took office. 43% of voters approve of his work, while 52% are dissatisfied with his activities.

The study was conducted from January 22-27, 2020 by interviewing 1,905 voters across the country.

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