ABC News reported Saturday that sources close to former President Donald Trump describe him as “stunned” and “stupefied” by the Senate’s vote to call witnesses in Trump’s second impeachment trial. “Donald Trump was expecting this to be over today,” said ABC News Chief Washington Correspondent Jonathan Karl. “He was expected to make a public appearance today or soon after and declare victory…but now we have this.”
“This was entirely unanticipated by Donald Trump’s legal team,” Karl said. “And we are told by sources close to the president that they are stunned, stupefied and still trying to digest what the implications of this are.”
“This revelation hit the former president very hard at Mar-a-Lago,” said ABC’s George Stephanopoulos.
Five Republicans joined Democrats in voting to allow witnesses, “a result of a surprise push by Democrats to summon a Republican congresswoman who has said she was told that the former president sided with the mob as rioters were attacking the Capitol,” reported The New York Times NYT -1.1%.
The vote also follows a report Friday night by CNN detailing “an expletive-laced phone call” between President Trump and House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy that happened while the Capitol was under attack. In the call, Trump is quoted as saying “well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are,” Trump said, according to lawmakers who were briefed on the call afterward by McCarthy.
CNN reported that “a furious McCarthy told the then-President the rioters were breaking into his office through the windows, and asked Trump, ‘Who the f—k do you think you are talking to?’ according to a Republican lawmaker familiar with the call.”