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Politics / Issues

Agreement Reached To Avoid Witnesses In Trump's Impeachment Trial

Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., speaks during a House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on June 4, 2020. Impeachment managers sought to depose Herrera Beutler in former President Donald Trump's impeachment trial, but later reached a deal to avoid witnesses.
Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., speaks during a House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on June 4, 2020. Impeachment managers sought to depose Herrera Beutler in former President Donald Trump's impeachment trial, but later reached a deal to avoid witnesses.

The impeachment managers and the former president's defense team agreed to enter a statement from GOP Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler into evidence instead of calling her as a witness.

The Senate impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump won't be hearing from witnesses after all.

After a two-hour break in the trial following a Senate vote to allow for witnesses earlier in the day, House managers and Trump's attorneys agreed to stipulate that a statement released Friday by Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., could be entered into the trial record. The deal averted a showdown between the two sides over whether to call Herrera Beutler and possibly many other witnesses — a development that could have delayed the trial's conclusion, and the Senate's other business for weeks.

In her statement, Herrera Beutler related a conversation she had with House minority leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., about a call he had with President Donald Trump on Jan. 6.

"When McCarthy finally reached the president on January 6 and asked him to publicly and forcefully call off the riot," the statement reads, "the president initially repeated the falsehood that it was antifa that had breached the Capitol. McCarthy refuted that and told the president that these were Trump supporters. That's when, according to McCarthy, the president said: 'Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are,' " she said.

That statement is now a part of the record, and the Senate quickly moved on to closing arguments in the trial.

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