A vote to acquit without witnesses would be ultimate proof of Collins’ empty words and loyalty to Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump
Despite voting ten times against including witnesses as part of the impeachment trial, for weeks, Senator Collins has tried to imply she believed witnesses and evidence could be a necessary part of this process. Senator Collins has said everything from the Senate should be “completely open to witnesses,” to claiming it is “important” that the Senate “explore with [John] Bolton the allegations that he’s making,” and most recently that it is “very important that there be fairness, that each side be able to select a witness or two.”
However, with reports Mitch McConnell has the votes to block witnesses and move towards a quick acquittal, Senator Collins faces a clear choice. If she truly believes that there are questions that require testimony from witnesses to resolve, Senator Collins cannot possibly vote to acquit the President without actually hearing from those witnesses. If Senator Collins chooses to acquit the President without hearing testimony, no matter how she votes on a separate measure involving witnesses, it will be the ultimate proof that her words are once again empty.
From the beginning of this process in early January, the Maine Democratic Party called on Senator Collins to commit that she will refuse to acquit the President if a fair process — including witnesses and evidence — did not take place. We are now at that moment of truth.
“Senator Collins might have said she was ‘open’ to witnesses, but so far, she has sided with Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump every step of the way to block their testimony,” said Maine Democratic Party Executive Director Lisa Roberts. “If Senator Collins votes to acquit the President without hearing from witnesses, she’ll be making clear once again that she will always side with Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump.”