As President Donald Trump and the White House prepares to address two formal articles of impeachment drafted by the House of Representatives in a potential trial held in the U.S. Senate, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld said on Thursday that he believes there could be as many as six Senate Republicans privately gearing up to vote to convict Trump.
According to The Hill, Weld, who is still one of the few Republican primary challengers for the presidency, made the claim as rumors swirl on Capitol Hill that the GOP-controlled Senate could see a number of Republican members break with the president and vote in favor of impeaching and removing him from office.
"I know most of the senior Republicans in the Senate," Weld told The Hill. "They're picking their words carefully when they talk to me, of all people, even though we are friends."
Weld, who appeared to be somewhat hesitant to go on record with a number, provided an estimation of just how many Republicans might flip on the White House, given his reported insider knowledge.
"I wouldn't want to get quoted," Weld said. "I don't even like to ask someone to do something which is not in their political self-interest. But yeah, I would say they're four to six votes for removal right now."
Weld warned Senate Republicans who remain on the president's side in the matter, claiming they will later "regret" their decision to defend Trump. Doubling down, Weld also claimed that the House Republicans who mounted a tough defense for Trump during the hearings, which included Rep. Devin Nunes and Rep. Jim Jordan, could have done the party more harm than good in terms of re-election chances in 2020.
"This could result in electoral defeat for the Republicans, in addition to be based on shaky morality," Weld said.
So far, amid rampant speculation, not a single Republican senator has gone on record and offered the possibility of voting against the president should the matter reach a Senate trial.
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows had a vastly different take on what might transpire on the GOP side of the Senate during Trump's possible impeachment trial, claiming the president is completely safe as far as Republicans are concerned.
"Based on my conversations with them I don't see a single Republican defecting," Meadows said.
Adding to the president's possible safety blanket is the fact that House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, who will play a large role in determining rules for a Senate impeachment trial. Graham recently said during an appearance on Fox News that he's aiming to end the entire process "as quickly as possible."