President Trump said Wednesday at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, that he'd "rather go the long way" with his Senate impeachment trial and have former national security adviser John Bolton testify — but argued that national security concerns preempt it.

"If you think about it, John, he knows some of my thoughts. He knows what I think about leaders, what happens if he reveals what I think about a certain leader and it's not very positive and then I have to deal on behalf of the country, it's going to be very hard, going to make the job very hard." 

The big picture: Trump added that he'd like to see other top administration officials testify, but claimed that the same national security concerns apply.

  • "Mick Mulvaney is probably around here someplace. I’d love to have Mick go, but he really expressed himself well when he did a Chris Wallace interview ... I’d love to have Mike Pompeo testify, but again, that’s a national security problem ... I’d love to have Rick Perry. Rick Perry has asked me, 'I’d love to testify. Please let me testify.' Because he knows this is all a hoax."

The state of play: Trump also told the press conference that he "would love to go" to the impeachment trial himself.

  • "I'd sit right in the front row and stare in their corrupt faces. I'd love to do it. ... Don't keep talking because you may convince me to do it."
  • The president admitted that one of his top defense lawyers, White House counsel Pat Cipollone, "might have a problem" if he decided to attend.

Worth noting: The Trump administration simply blocked the officials the president discussed today from participating in the House's impeachment inquiry — without citing executive privilege or national security concerns.

  • That strategy resulted in an obstruction of Congress article of impeachment against Trump.

What's next: The Democratic House managers in the trial will kick off their opening arguments on Wednesday afternoon — with 24 hours spread across three days.

Go deeper: The daily highlights from Trump's Senate impeachment trial

Go deeper

Updated 35 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 6:30 a.m. ET: 30,199,007 — Total deaths: 946,490— Total recoveries: 20,544, 967Map
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 6:30 a.m. ET: 6,675,593 — Total deaths: 197,644 — Total recoveries: 2,540,334 — Total tests: 90,710,730Map
  3. Politics: Former Pence aide says she plans to vote for Joe Biden, accusing Trump of costing lives in his coronavirus response.
  4. Health: Pew: 49% of Americans wouldn't get COVID-19 vaccine if available today Pandemic may cause cancer uptick The risks of moving too fast on a vaccine — COVID-19 racial disparities extend to health coverage losses.
  5. Business: Retail sales return to pre-coronavirus trend.
Mike Allen, author of AM
1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Mike Bloomberg's anti-chaos theory

CNN's Anderson Cooper questions Joe Biden last night at a drive-in town hall in Moosic, Pa., outside Scranton. Photo: CNN

Mike Bloomberg's $100 million Florida blitz begins today and will continue "wall to wall" in all 10 TV markets through Election Day, advisers tell me.

Why it matters: Bloomberg thinks that Joe Biden putting away Florida is the most feasible way to head off the national chaos we could have if the outcome of Trump v. Biden remained uncertain long after Election Day.

Biden's hardline Russia reset

Photo Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Getty Images photos: Mark Reinstein

When he talks about Russia, Joe Biden has sounded like Ronald Reagan all summer, setting up a potential Day 1 confrontation with Russian President Vladimir Putin if Biden were to win.

Why it matters: Biden has promised a forceful response against Russia for both election interference and alleged bounty payments to target American troops in Afghanistan. But being tougher than President Trump could be the easy part. The risk is overdoing it and making diplomacy impossible.