Suddenly, Questioning of Bolton Looks Unlikely

Why yes, he is.Ryan Rahman/Pacific Press via ZUMA

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This is ridiculous. Yesterday the rumor mill said it was all but certain that the Senate would vote to call witnesses in President Trump’s impeachment trial. Today it’s now all but certain that they won’t. I know that internet time speeds everything up, but this is ridiculous. Nothing happened in the past 24 hours. But hey, Trump sets new precedents for bad behavior every day, so why not set another?

If the Senate chooses to not hear from witnesses, it will be the first time a presidential impeachment trial does not include witnesses. The previous impeachments both included new witnesses who did not testify as part of the House investigation.

There you have it. The Trump Republicans are going beyond even the Radical Republicans and the Gingrich Republicans in their partisan rancor. Why am I not surprised?

For the record, if Republicans stick together and prevent witnesses from testifying, I think it’s because they now realize it could cause real trouble. In the best case (for them), Bolton confirms that Trump tried to extort Ukraine for fake dirt on Joe Biden, but everyone already knows that. If it could be ignored for the past four months, it can be ignored for the next four days. But the worst case is that Bolton says something new that leads to questioning of other witnesses and eventually to something that even Republicans can’t ignore. Even the supposedly moderate Republicans are probably scared to death of that.

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This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

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