Senator Mitt Romney (R., Utah) said on Monday that it looks “increasingly likely” there will be enough Republican votes to call former White House national security adviser John Bolton to testify in the Senate impeachment trial.
“I think it’s increasingly likely that other Republicans will join those of us who think we should hear from John Bolton,” Romney told reporters. “I have spoken with others who have opined upon this.”
Romney did not indicate which Senators he believed would vote in favor of Bolton’s testimony. Senator Susan Collins (R., Maine) said in early January that she was working with “a fairly small group” of GOP Senators to allow witnesses at the trial.
Romney’s comments came after a New York Times report on Sunday alleged that Bolton wrote in his upcoming book that President Trump told the former adviser he had conditioned military aid to Ukraine on that country’s commitment to investigate corruption allegations against Joe and Hunter Biden. On Monday morning Republican Senators canceled a scheduled press briefing.
President Trump has repeatedly denied demanding an investigation into the Bidens in exchange for the release of military aid. Trump also denied Bolton’s reported allegation on Sunday evening.
“I NEVER told John Bolton that the aid to Ukraine was tied to investigations into Democrats, including the Bidens. In fact, he never complained about this at the time of his very public termination,” the President wrote on Twitter. “If John Bolton said this, it was only to sell a book.”
As late as last Friday, GOP Senate aides had said Democrats would probably not be able to get the votes needed to summon witnesses to give testimony. Republicans currently hold a 53-47 majority, so Democrats will need to convince four Republican Senators to gain enough votes to summon witnesses.