Schumer: I will demand vote in Senate trial for my witnesses

Come on, manChuck Schumer’s been in Congress long enough to know what being in the minority means, especially because Schumer helped engineer the defenestration of minority rights in the Senate. Still, Schumer still thinks he can split the Republican majority and get Mitch McConnell to do what his own Democratic colleagues in the House refused to do — go to court to get four Trump administration officials to testify.

“Many of my Republican colleagues,” Schumer told MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, “will be in a real dilemma, because their constituents will want them to do that.” Er … has Schumer seen how impeachment has been polling, especially among Republican “constituents”?

“I am allowed, even though 51 votes governs, I am allowed to ask for votes. I will ask during the impeachment proceeding for a vote on whether Mulvaney should testify, and whether Bolton should testify,” the New York Democrat said in an interview with MSNBC’s Chris Hayes.

“Many of my Republican colleagues will be in a real dilemma because their constituents will want them to do that, they will have no good reason not to, and they can well be held accountable for doing that.” …

“Asking for witnesses, something so reasonable and supported by 64% of Republicans is — I expect we will get a bunch of Republicans to vote with us on these requests, I do, I do.”

Would that be 64% of all Republicans, or only 64% of the 10% that support impeachment? How about 64% of the handful that think impeachment is actually a high priority for Congress, or themselves? Senate Republicans know what their constituents think, and it’s not Gee you should follow Chuck Schumer’s leadership.

This is all bluster and no substance. Schumer’s stuck with an incomplete impeachment that has no chance of selling in the Senate, not even to all of the Senate Democrats. Republicans have closed ranks in large part because of the rushed and bitterly partisan process on display in the House Intelligence Committee hearings, and last week’s stunt by Jerrold Nadler in Judiciary didn’t help matters either. They’re not about to spend months in court doing the job Schiff and Nadler refused to do properly in the House — and certainly not to pull Schumer’s chestnuts out of the fire.

Besides, even if Schumer did manage to get 51 votes for those four witnesses, McConnell could easily get 51 for a few others — like Hunter Biden, Adam Schiff, the whistleblower with whom his staff coordinated, and so on. McConnell could take a long time in humiliating Democrats with his own subpoenas, and Schumer knows it. That’s why Schumer’s only venting in impotence, and why he knows he’s better off sticking to that.