Just after President Trump’s defense lawyers ended arguments in their Senate trial Tuesday, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California became the first Democrat to suggest that she could vote to acquit him despite serious concerns about his character.
“Nine months left to go, the people should judge. We are a republic, we are based on the will of the people — the people should judge,” Feinstein said Tuesday, after the president’s team finished a three-day presentation in his defense. “That was my view and it still is my view.”
Still, she indicated that arguments in the trial about Trump’s character and fitness for office had left her undecided. “What changed my opinion as this went on,” she said, is a realization that “impeachment isn’t about one offense. It’s really about the character and ability and physical and mental fitness of the individual to serve the people, not themselves.”
Asked whether she would ultimately vote to acquit, she demurred, saying, “We’re not finished.
Only one other Democrat had been considered a possible vote against ousting Trump from office -- Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia -- but he has not tipped his hand. Manchin told CNN on Saturday that Trump’s team did a “good job” in its initial arguments, “making me think about things.” He said separately on Fox, “I am totally undecided.”If Feinstein goes, observers noted that Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) could follow. If true, this is quite the development. Yet, does that mean the GOP will clinch victory on this whole issue over witnesses? Right now, there aren’t enough votes to block the Democratic demand to bring in former National Security Adviser John Bolton and others to discuss this alleged quid pro quo allegation between Ukraine, Donald Trump, Hunter Biden, and this supposed scheme to withhold aid until a corruption probe was opened into the former vice president’s son. Yet, if it seems too good to be true, it usually is, and Feinstein just now walked it back. Can you imagine the mob that would have formed to go after her? My word.