U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin said she’s hopeful witnesses will be called and senators will be allowed to ask questions during the impeachment trial of President Trump.
“We need a full, fair and honest trial,” the Madison Democrat said an interview aired Sunday on “UpFront,” produced in partnership with WisPolitics.com.
The trial gets underway Tuesday. Chief Justice John Roberts will preside, but the Senate’s Republican leadership has not said that new witnesses or new evidence will be considered.
“I’m heartened by a handful of my Republican colleagues expressing an openness to hearing from witnesses. You know, to me, it should be just an obvious thing that one does,” she said.
Baldwin said she has not made up her mind about how she will vote.
“I want to do impartial justice, as I have just sworn this past week to do, and so I’m going to watch this trial unfold,” Baldwin said.
Baldwin said if the president thinks his phone call with the Ukrainian president was “perfect,” as he has said and tweeted, “then he should come in and explain why and present witnesses who have first-hand knowledge that will help him make his case.”
“UpFront” host Adrienne Pedersen asked Baldwin about polling that shows a majority of Wisconsin residents oppose removing Trump from office via impeachment.
“This isn’t a matter of polling,” Baldwin said.
“I hope that the Wisconsin people and the American people will be watching, and watching closely and that regardless of whether their judgment changes, I took an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States, and I just took an oath as a juror to do impartial justice, and I am going to do that,” Baldwin said.
In a web extra, Baldwin said she would not endorse a candidate in Wisconsin’s Democratic presidential primary, and that she wants the July Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee to be “a celebration of coming to a decision about our nominee.”
Also on the program, two members of the Wisconsin Elections Commission clashed over the lawsuit that could force some 200,000 people off the state’s voter rolls.
Many of those people are believed to have moved and haven’t responded to an Elections Commission mailing encouraging them to update their addresses and voter registration.
The commission wants to give those voters until 2021 to respond. But the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty sued the commission, trying to force it to remove those voters from the rolls within 30 days.
An Ozaukee County judge sided with WILL, but that ruling is now on hold after being appealed.
The commission, made up of three Republicans and three Democrats, has been deadlocked on how to proceed.
“It’s about disenfranchising thousands of Wisconsin voters,” Democratic Commissioner Ann Jacobs said.
“We cannot go into this very close into this very, very close election with an extra 200,000 people on the voting rolls,” Republican Commissioner Bob Spindell said.
“Why not?” Pedersen asked.
“It allows for possible fraud,” Spindell said.
But Jacobs countered that evidence of voter fraud in Wisconsin is “infinitesimal.”
“These are not extra names. These are not extra voters. These are real, live registered voters in the state of Wisconsin who have a legal right to vote,” she said.
See more from the program at http://www.wisn.com/upfront