Pelosi Brands Republican Senators 'Accomplices to the President's Cover-up,' Schumer Decries 'Sham Trial'

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer slammed GOP senators who voted against allowing new evidence and witnesses to be presented in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial.

Democrats had hoped for the support of four Republicans to get a majority but in the end GOP wildcards Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee went with their party. Susan Collins (Maine) and Mitt Romney (Utah) were the only Republican senators who backed the Democrats in the motion which was voted down by 51-49.

In a statement, Pelosi said that Senate Republicans who voted against the motion were "accomplices to the President's cover-up."

"The President was impeached for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. He is impeached forever. There can be no acquittal without a trial. And there is no trial without witnesses, documents and evidence.

"It is a sad day for America to see Senator McConnell require the Chief Justice of the United States to preside over a vote which rejected our nation's judicial norms, precedents and institutions to uphold the Constitution and the rule of law."

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks at her weekly press conference at the U.S. Capitol on January 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. She has slammed the vote in the Senate not to allow further witnesses or evidence in Donald Trump's impeachment trial. Mario Tama/Getty Images

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer described the result as "a grand tragedy, one of the worst tragedies that the Senate has ever overcome."

He said in a statement: "America will remember this day—a day when the United Senate did not live up to its responsibilities, turned away from truth and instead went along with a sham trial.

"If the president is acquitted with no witnesses, no documents, any acquittal will have no value because Americans will know that this trial was not a real trial. It's a tragedy on a very large scale."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was instrumental to the vote result. McConnell told Republican senators earlier in the week that vulnerable GOPs were at risk in the election if there was a protracted impeachment trial caused by more witnesses.

In a statement, McConnell said that the vote showed "the numerous witnesses and 28,000-plus pages of documents already in evidence are sufficient to judge the House Managers' accusations and end this impeachment trial."

"Never in Senate history has this body paused an impeachment trial to pursue additional witnesses with unresolved questions of executive privilege that would require protracted litigation. We have no interest in establishing such a new precedent, particularly for individuals whom the House expressly chose not to pursue."

The Democrats had hoped that former national security adviser John Bolton could be a key witness, especially following reports that his upcoming memoir details how the president intended to withhold military aid to Ukraine until it announced probes into the his rival Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, claims that Trump denies.

Trump's former chief-of-staff, John Kelly, was critical of the move not to have further evidence given, saying it leaves the GOP "open to a lot of criticism."

"It seems it was half a trial," Kelly said, according to

The vote means that it will be the first presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history without witnesses, paving the way for the acquittal of Trump in a Senate vote on Wednesday.