Sen. Baldwin: Senate must call Bolton to testify

    Gavel with
    (Photo by Nick Youngson, Alpha Stock Images, license CC BY-SA 3.0)
    Sen. Tammy Baldwin headshot
    Sen. Tammy Baldwin

    Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin joined other Senate Democrats Monday urging the Senate to call former Trump national security advisor John Bolton to testify in the ongoing impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.

    Following up on Twitter Monday afternoon, Baldwin urged Republican senators to join her: “It is my hope that my Republican friends would want to know if John Bolton has evidence that President Trump did not tell one of our colleagues the truth.”

    The Democrats’ push for Bolton’s testimony followed leaks over the weekend of Bolton’s forthcoming memoir. The New York Times on Sunday night reported that Wisconsin’s other senator, Republican Ron Johnson, is mentioned in the manuscript of Bolton’s book, which has garnered widespread coverage for its statement that Trump, as charged in the impeachment, used the threat of freezing military aid to Ukraine in order to prod an investigation of former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter.

    Ron Johnson official portrait
    Sen. Ron Johnson

    The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel report pointed out that Bolton’s revelation contradicted Johnson’s comments about Trump’s conversations with Ukraine that are at the center of the president’s impeachment late last year in the House of Representatives and the subsequent Senate trial now underway. Baldwin stated “that the Bolton account supports what diplomat Gordon Sondland told Johnson last summer, when Sondland reported a link between aid and investigations that could benefit Trump politically,” the Journal Sentinel  reported.

    On Tuesday, Baldwin returned to Twitter to underscore the call for Bolton’s testimony — and to underscore the contradiction with Johnson’s comments. “If John Bolton is telling the truth then President Trump is not telling the truth,” Baldwin tweeted. She then repeated her call for Republicans to join in the demand for Bolton to testify.

    In a separate Tweet, Baldwin called on Vice President Mike Pence to make public a classified account of his September telephone call with Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenski. A Pence aide in November submitted the memo as part of the impeachment investigation. 

    “I have reviewed the document from @VP Pence’s national security aide, Jennifer Williams, and I see no legitimate basis for it to be classified,” Baldwin tweeted. “This evidence should be made public by Vice President Pence. The American people should have all the facts and the truth.”

    Baldwin issued that tweet as Pence was visiting Madison to promote Trump administration school privatization policies.

    Erik Gunn
    Senior Reporter Erik Gunn reports and writes on work and the economy, along with related subjects, for the Wisconsin Examiner. He spent 24 years as a freelance writer for Milwaukee Magazine, Isthmus, The Progressive, BNA Inc., and other publications, winning awards for investigative reporting, feature writing, beat coverage, business writing, and commentary. An East Coast native, he previously covered labor for The Milwaukee Journal after reporting for newspapers in upstate New York and northern Illinois. He's a graduate of Beloit College (English Comp.) and the Columbia School of Journalism. Off hours he is the Examiner's resident Springsteen and Jackson Browne fanboy and model railroad nerd.