Just days before President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial begins in earnest, one of Indiana’s two Republican senators spent the day talking to combat veterans in Brown County, taking some questions afterwards about next week’s trial.
We asked Sen. Todd Young (R-IN) if he thought witnesses should be called in the upcoming trial.
“It’s too early to tell,” said Sen. Young, who went on to explain how he wants the impeachment managers to present their case on the articles of impeachment and then give the President’s attorneys a chance to offer a defense.
However, Sen. Mike Braun said he was willing to entertain the idea.
“As long as it’s reciprocal,” said Braun. “So, I don’t know what happens when you all of a sudden start talking about witnesses when you’re gonna want them from both sides, because it’s been kind of a one-sided discussion so far.”
Both Indiana Senators believe Democrats had this process planned before Trump’s presidency began.
“Ultimately, they did impeach the President,” said Young. “The trial is now going to us, each of us has sworn to be an impartial juror and I will do that.”
“We’re sitting in. We gotta listen, but it’s a political process,” added Braun. “Not the same thing as a real trial in the sense of there’d be every senator dismissed as a juror for some type of idea of how this thing began to begin with.”
Lev Parnas, a former associate of Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, recently implicated the President and Vice President in the investigation into the Bidens and Ukraine. Senator Braun told Fox radio he doesn’t believe it.
“You can tell they orchestrated even with the Lev Parnas stuff,” said Braun. “That looks orchestrated. It looks like it was planned.”
We asked Sen. Young what he thought about Parnas’ implications.
“I know there’s a lot of chatter in the news media and I understand that but I’m really just waiting to see the case as presented to the United States Senate,” said Young. “I’m not paying attention to Rachel Maddow interviews or some of the stuff on the outside.”
Senator Braun said he doesn’t expect to hear anything new in this process.
“I think the public, especially in Indiana, has heard a lot of it,” said Braun. “And unless there’s some new bombshell that would arrive, they’d rather we get on to issues like the cost of healthcare.”
Once the trial is over, the Senate will vote on whether to convict. That would require 67 votes, meaning 20 Republicans would need to side with Democrats, which at this point seems unlikely.
If witnesses are allowed, this trial could last more than a month. Without them, senators say this could wrap up in as early as ten days.