Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff said Sunday that the White House is “confident” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will eventually send the articles of impeachment to the Senate, calling her current position of withholding them “untenable.”
Marc Short said on “Fox News Sunday” that the Trump administration believes Pelosi will back off when Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell negotiate trial procedures.
“She will yield. There’s no way she can hold this position,” Short told Fox host Chris Wallace.
President Donald Trump was impeached by the House last week, being charged with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.
Trump on Saturday slammed his impeachment by falsely claiming Democrats didn’t follow the correct proceedings laid out by the US Constitution.
Speaking to a crowd of conservative students, Trump incorrectly accused Pelosi and Democrats of “violating the Constitution” and then deciding to abandon the case.
Trump repeated claims that there was no case to make against him after he became the third President in US history to be impeached this week.
House Democratic leaders have not said there is no case. Instead, Pelosi held off on sending articles of impeachment to the Senate until Democrats believe they have a fair structure for the trial. The House also did not appoint impeachment managers before leaving Washington for the holiday break.
Democratic presidential hopeful Cory Booker responded to Short’s comments in an interview with CNN later Sunday, saying that Pelosi is doing “everything she can” to ensure a fair Senate trial.
“I don’t really give that much credence to complaints from the White House about the process when they wouldn’t even participate in it,” Booker told CNN’s Ana Cabrera on “Newsroom.” “They wouldn’t release documents that are germane and urgent to what the Congress was doing, and for them to withhold witnesses – I mean here’s folks that again that have been undermining the ability for Congress to do its job and to provide checks and balances.”
Short said Trump is “looking forward” to being “exonerated” in the Senate trial, but said the ideal scenario for the trial would be for both sides to present their cases and then hold a vote on how to proceed – something McConnell has suggested as well.
“He’s frustrated what he finds to be a completely unreasonable impeachment. So sure he’s frustrated by that, but he’s also anxious to get not just acquitted, but exonerated in the Senate so he’s looking forward to his opportunity to have a fair trial in the Senate,” Short said.
CNN’s Paul LeBlanc contributed to this report.