Sen. Lamar Alexander's decision to vote against admitting witnesses in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump is an "offense," Sen. Jeff Merkley said Friday.
"It's an offense against the Senate," the Oregon Democrat told CNN's "New Day." "It's an offense against the rule of law, and it's an offense against the American people. The American people will never know the true facts."
As a result, the Senate will "have the first-ever so-called trial that is a kangaroo court without witnesses and without documents," Merkley added. "It's certainly an insult to the rule of law. So it's a tragedy in every possible way that this is where we're headed."
Meanwhile, senators must make sure that even if witnesses are not allowed, the trial will not result in exonerating Trump, said the senator.
"There are holes in the story," said Merkley. "That uncertainty is something that many of my colleagues have seized on to justify their position. The only way you resolve that uncertainty and really know what happened in those meetings and in those messages is to have the witnesses and have the documents."
Republicans, however, are "terrified" that witnesses will show that the "threads of this go to the top of department after department, the National Security Council, the Secretary of Defense, the Foreign Service," said Merkley. "It's a can of worms, and Lamar is helping them do it. We're going to pound the nail on that can of worms. We're not going to look at the details. We're going to keep it wrapped up because of the damage it would do to the president."
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