- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday dismissed demands from the Senate’s top Democrat for live testimony during the impending impeachment trial against President Trump, saying Democrats in his chamber now want to clean up the House’s mess.

Mr. McConnell said Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, wants to add to House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff’s “sloppy work” by calling more witnesses than what the House chose to pursue.

“The House chose this road — it’s their duty to investigate,” Mr. McConnell said on the chamber floor.

The Kentucky Republican said the House failed to go to court to pursue “useful witnesses” and that Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her colleagues didn’t want to wait for due process.

“They threatened to impeach the president if they had to go to court at all,” Mr. McConnell said, adding that the House’s articles of impeachment as they stand now appear “inadequate to prove what they want to allege.”

“So now the Senate Democratic leader apparently wants our chamber to do House Democrats’ homework for them,” Mr. McConnell said.

His remarks come after Mr. Schumer published a letter to the majority leader and held a press conference earlier this week, demanding live testimony from four key witnesses.

Mr. Schumer said he wants White House acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, his senior adviser Robert Blair, former National Security Adviser John R. Bolton and his associate deputy director Michael Duffey to give live testimony during the impeachment trial.

He said they all have direct knowledge about Mr. Trump’s decision making in regards to withholding aid to Ukraine.

“To conduct a trial without the facts is saying we are afraid. We have something to hide,” Mr. Schumer said.

The two leaders are expected to meet “soon” to agree to rules and procedures for the trial, which is expected to begin next month.

• Alex Swoyer can be reached at aswoyer@washingtontimes.com.

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