After defeating a Democrat-led effort to hear from more witnesses during the impeachment trial of President Trump, the GOP-controlled Senate is expected to acquit him next Wednesday.
Republicans told reporters following a closed-door meeting on Capitol Hill late Friday that lawmakers are expected to deliver closing arguments on Monday and hold open deliberations the following day.
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Sen. Mike Braun (R-ID) also said the Senate will vote on an organizing resolution to establish the procedures for next week’s votes.
A vote on the articles of impeachment — abuse of power and obstruction of Congress — will occur Wednesday, they added.
“There was some feverish discussion,” Braun told The Hill.
Earlier in the day, the Senate voted 51-49 against a Democrat-led motion for more impeachment witnesses and for additional documents to be introduced. Two Republicans — Sens. Mitt Romney of Utah and Susan Collins of Maine — sided with the chamber’s 47 Democrats.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) praised the vote’s outcome and predicted that the trial will end “in the coming days.”
“A majority of the U.S. Senate has determined that the numerous witnesses and 28,000-plus pages of documents already in evidence are sufficient to judge the House Managers’ accusations and end this impeachment trial,” McConnell added.
“There is no need for the Senate to re-open the investigation which the House Democratic majority chose to conclude and which the Managers themselves continue to describe as ‘overwhelming’ and ‘beyond any doubt.’
“Never in Senate history has this body paused an impeachment trial to pursue additional witnesses with unresolved questions of executive privilege that would require protracted litigation. We have no interest in establishing such a new precedent, particularly for individuals whom the House expressly chose not to pursue,” the Kentucky Republican added.
“Senators will now confer among ourselves, with the House Managers, and with the President’s counsel to determine next steps as we prepare to conclude the trial in the coming days,” he said.