Sen. Lindsey Graham on Sunday said President Donald Trump hopes to have the Senate impeachment trial “behind him” before he delivers the State of the Union address next month.
The South Carolina Republican’s comments to Fox News come as the impeachment trial against the President convened last week with the reading of the two articles of impeachment in the Senate. On Saturday, House Democrats released their argument for why Trump should be removed from office by the Senate. Trump’s legal team, meanwhile, released a response to Senate summons arguing against the articles on Saturday evening.
Last month, Trump accepted an invitation from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to deliver the State of the Union address on February 4.
Trump’s most recent State of the Union address attracted attention after it became a point of contention in negotiations related to the partial government shutdown.
In mid-January, Pelosi asked Trump to postpone the address or deliver it in writing, citing security concerns. Trump responded by canceling Pelosi’s use of a military vehicle for an overseas trip, but he eventually acquiesced to her request and agreed to reschedule the speech after the shutdown had ended.
What’s Trump’s mood?
Asked Sunday about Trump’s mood and expectations ahead of arguments that are set to begin Tuesday, Graham, a close ally of the President, said Trump is optimistic the trial will go in his favor.
“His mood is to go to the State of the Union with this behind him and talk about what he wants to do for the next, rest of 2020 and what he wants to do for the next four years,” Graham said during the interview with Fox News. “He is very much comfortable with the idea that this is going to turn out well for him.”
“The one thing he talks to me constantly about is, what does the next president do after this if this is successful? He does not want to legitimatize the attack on the presidency.”
Clare Foran contributed to this story.