GOP senators believe they have the votes to block witnesses
It was clear to Senate Republicans on Wednesday after a morning meeting between Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) that the question of having additional witnesses is settled, and the Senate will vote Friday to wrap up the impeachment trial of President Trump.
There was no discussion of witnesses at a Senate GOP lunch meeting Wednesday, which was held a couple hours after McConnell and Murkowski met for about 20 to 30 minutes.
That was seen as a sign by several senators that Democrats will fail to convince four Republicans to join them in calling for witnesses. Without a vote to hear from witnesses, the trial could end as soon as Friday.
"We're going to get it done by Friday, hopefully," Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) said following the meeting.
Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.), emerging from the lunch, said, "I think I can say the mood is good."
Braun expressed confidence that McConnell will be able to keep his conference unified enough to defeat a motion to consider subpoenas for additional witnesses and documents.
"If I had to guess, no witnesses," he said.
"We'll be in a place where I think everyone is going to have their mind made up and I believe that we'll be able to move to a verdict, and the witness question will be clear at that point," Braun added.