Graham on impeachment trial: 'End this crap as quickly as possible'

 
"The best thing for the American people is to end this crap as quickly as possible, to have a trial in the Senate, bipartisan acquittal of the president. And on Feb. 4, when the president comes into the House chamber to deliver the State of the Union, he will have been acquitted by the Senate," Graham said during an interview with Fox News's Sean Hannity
 
The Senate's impeachment trial is expected to formally begin when senators and Chief Justice John Roberts are sworn in on Thursday. Senators are expected to pass a resolution on the rules for the trial on Tuesday and start opening arguments later in the week. 
 
Republican senators initially hoped to finish the trial by the State of the Union, but Sen. Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntGOP senators confident Trump pick to be confirmed by November Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for SCOTUS confirmation hearings before election SCOTUS confirmation in the last month of a close election? Ugly MORE (R-Mo.), who previously predicted it would be wrapped by the speech, said this week he no longer views that as a realistic timeline. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), the No. 2 Senate Republican, also warned that it would be a "fairly tight deadline." 
 
The first phase of the trial — opening arguments and questions from senators — is expected to last roughly two weeks. That would put the end of that phase up against or potentially past the State of the Union. 
 
After that senators are expected to have to decide on whether to call additional witnesses or request documents, a decision that is putting a spotlight on divisions within the Senate Republican caucus. 
 
Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyGOP senators pan debate: 'S---show,' 'awful,' 'embarrassment' Romney, Murphy 'extremely concerned' about threats to withdraw from US Embassy in Baghdad Schumer rips Trump, GOP over debate: 'How are you not embarrassed?' MORE (R-Utah) has said he wants to hear from former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonJudge appears skeptical of Bolton's defense of publishing book without White House approval Maximum pressure is keeping US troops in Iraq and Syria Woodward book trails Bolton, Mary Trump in first-week sales MORE, while a handful of other Republicans, including Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsGOP senators pan debate: 'S---show,' 'awful,' 'embarrassment' Budowsky: Senate's Trump Republicans on trial, in trouble Senate Democrats want to avoid Kavanaugh 2.0 MORE (Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), are viewed as potential swing votes. 
 
Democrats have requested four witnesses, including Bolton and acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney. They need four GOP senators to give them the simple majority needed to call a witness. 
 
However, Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulRon Paul hospitalized in Texas The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump previews SCOTUS nominee as 'totally brilliant' Rand Paul says he can't judge 'guilt or innocence' in Breonna Taylor case MORE (R-Ky.) and conservatives are warning that if Republicans vote to help Democrats subpoena Bolton, they will force votes on subpoenaing controversial figures such as Hunter Biden and the whistleblower at the center of the impeachment inquiry. 
 
Graham on Wednesday said he hopes that "nobody will be called as a witness" and warned Republican senators against believing that Democrats want to get to the bottom of Trump's decision to delay Ukraine aid. 
 
"I would tell my colleagues on the Republican side that Chuck Schumer is not seeking the truth. If you think Chuck Schumer is trying to find out what happened here, you're missing a lot," Graham said in reference to Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerFirst woman sentenced for her role in Nxivm sex cult Ocasio-Cortez calls Trump a 'white supremacist' after debate Democrats rip Trump for not condemning white supremacists, Proud Boys at debate MORE (D-N.Y.). "Chuck Schumer is trying to take back the Senate."