End draws near in Trump impeachment trial

Donald Trump. Ritratt: Gage Skidmore

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial faces a crucial vote on Friday. Senators are due to decide whether to call witnesses. This would prolong the historic proceeding or instead bring them to the swift conclusion that Trump wants.

Senate Democrats have been arguing throughout the two-week trial that lawmakers need to hear from witnesses like John Bolton. But they do not appear to have enough support from Republicans who control the chamber.

Republican Senator Lamar Alexander, who had been undecided, declared late on Thursday that Democrats had proven the case against Trump but that the president’s actions did “not meet the United States Constitution’s high bar for an impeachable offence.”

Barring an unforeseen change of heart by another Republican senator, that would leave Democrats short of the 51 votes they need. This would allow Trump’s allies to defeat the request for additional evidence.

The final vote could take place late on Friday or on Saturday, congressional sources said.