Dec 19, 2019

Senate Republicans hope Trump stays off Twitter during impeachment trial

A tweet from President Trump about former Ukraine ambassador Marie Yovanovitch is displayed during her testimony before the House Intelligence Committee in November. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Pool/Getty Images

Senate Republicans told Politico that they hope President Trump will stay off Twitter during his impeachment trial.

The big picture: GOP lawmakers fear that a tweetstorm — like the one the president embarked on the day of the impeachment vote — could disrupt their strategy, sway undecideds and ruin the chances of a unanimous acquittal from Senate Republicans.

What they're saying, via Politico:

  • Sen. John Cornyn (Texas): "This is a solemn and serious undertaking and I just think we don’t need a bunch of distractions. ... The president will like the outcome, I believe, in the end. So ... making it easier, not harder, would be a good thing."
  • Sen. Susan Collins (Maine): "The president would be best served by letting his lawyers speak for him and not doing any comment. At all. ... I doubt, however, that he will heed my advice."
  • Sen. Lindsay Graham (S.C.): "He can defend himself, he has a right to express his grievances, but if I were him I would … keep a low profile."
  • Sen. John Thune (S.D.): "There [are] many cases in which I hope he doesn’t tweet."

Between the lines: Trump tweeted attacks aimed at former Ukraine ambassador Marie Yovanovitch as she testified before the House Intelligence Committee in November.

Go deeper: Inside the McConnell-Trump impeachment trial playbook

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