Schumer indicates Democrats will force votes on impeachment trial witnesses

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden 'encouraged' by meeting with congressional leaders on infrastructure Republicans welcome the chance to work with Democrats on a bipartisan infrastructure bill Cheney sideshow distracts from important battle over Democrats' partisan voting bill MORE (D-N.Y.) indicated on Tuesday that Democrats will force votes during the Senate impeachment trial on calling witnesses such as acting White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyMick MulvaneyHeadhunters having hard time finding jobs for former Trump officials: report Trump holdovers are denying Social Security benefits to the hardest working Americans Mulvaney calls Trump's comments on Capitol riot 'manifestly false' MORE and former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonRepublicans request documents on Kerry's security clearance process Trump pushes back on Bolton poll Hillicon Valley: Facebook Oversight board to rule on Trump ban in 'coming weeks' | Russia blocks Biden Cabinet officials in retaliation for sanctions MORE.

Schumer said that he will discuss his initial proposal for a Senate trial with Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBipartisanship has become a partisan weapon Washington showing signs of normalcy after year of restrictions Former OMB pick Neera Tanden to serve as senior adviser to Biden MORE (R-Ky.) but stressed that “every senator will have a choice.”

“We will have votes on whether these people should testify, and whether these documents should be made public as part of the trial, and the American people will be watching. They will be watching. Who is for an open and fair trial?” Schumer asked.

Schumer added that senators will have to decide if they “want a fair, honest trial that examines all the facts" or "a trial that doesn't let all the facts come out.”

Schumer sent his initial offer on Senate impeachment trial procedure to McConnell over the weekend. As part of his offer Schumer wants to call four witnesses, including Mulvaney and Bolton.

McConnell appeared to reject that offer on Tuesday, calling it "dead wrong," and warned that it "could set a nightmarish precedent for our institution."

McConnell and Schumer are expected to meet to discuss Senate trial procedure “very soon,” according to the GOP leader.

During the Clinton trial, the Senate passed a resolution 100-0 laying out basic procedure, but a subsequent resolution on specific witnesses broke down along party lines.

The resolution would be amendable on the Senate floor, where any senator would be able to force a vote and would only need a simple majority to be successful.

“Each individual senator will have both the power and the responsibility to help shape what an impeachment trial looks like,” Schumer added.