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

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham asks colleagues to support call for China to close wet markets Justice IG pours fuel on looming fight over FISA court Trump says he's considering restricting travel to coronavirus 'hot spots' MORE (R-S.C.), a top Trump ally, said Wednesday that he wants the looming impeachment trial to be wrapped before the scheduled Feb. 4 State of the Union address. 
 
"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 begin informal talks on new coronavirus stimulus Five things being discussed for a new coronavirus relief bill Hillicon Valley: Apple rolls out coronavirus screening app, website | Pompeo urged to crack down on coronavirus misinformation from China | Senators push FTC on price gouging | Instacart workers threaten strike 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 RomneyTrump selects White House lawyer for coronavirus inspector general Overnight Health Care: CDC recommends face coverings in public | Resistance to social distancing sparks new worries | Controversy over change of national stockpile definition | McConnell signals fourth coronavirus bill On The Money: Economy sheds 701K jobs in March | Why unemployment checks could take weeks | Confusion surrounds 9B in small-business loans MORE (R-Utah) has said he wants to hear from former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonChina sees chance to expand global influence amid pandemic Trump ignores science at our peril Bolton defends decision to shutter NSC pandemic office MORE, while a handful of other Republicans, including Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsGOP senators begin informal talks on new coronavirus stimulus GOP presses for swift Ratcliffe confirmation to intel post Campaigns pivot toward health awareness as races sidelined by coronavirus 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 PaulGeorgia governor says he didn't know asymptomatic people could spread coronavirus McConnell: Impeachment distracted government from coronavirus threat Warren knocks McConnell for forcing in-person Senate vote amid coronavirus pandemic 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 SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerBiden calls on Trump to appoint coronavirus 'supply commander' Democrats press Trump, GOP for funding for mail-in ballots Schumer doubles down in call for Trump to name coronavirus supply czar MORE (D-N.Y.). "Chuck Schumer is trying to take back the Senate."