“My guess is some minds may be changed,” Biden told reporters at the White House.
Biden said he did not watch any of Wednesday’s hearing live but did take in news coverage about what was presented.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki later told reporters: “He was not intending to give a projection or a prediction, but was just giving a very human and emotional response to what many people did, many people felt, I should say, when they watched the video.”
Biden was asked multiple times about the trial. His first answer was, “I’m focused on my job … to deal with the promises I made. And we all know we have to move on.”
Democrats must convince at least 17 Republican senators to vote to convict Trump or he will be acquitted. They may need to sway even more, because 10 Democrats have said they’re waiting to decide on their vote or have declined to outline their stance.
Some 35 GOP senators have indicated or pledged to vote to acquit.
Biden has taken a backseat to Congress in the trial, frequently declining to weigh in. He also refused pleas from Republicans to call on top Democrats to not go forward with the trial. Many Republicans argue the trial is a waste of time since a conviction is unlikely, and say it’s unconstitutional because Trump left office on Jan. 20.
Biden and his team have said Congress can conduct the trial and work on his agenda at the same time, but senators were consumed with the trial for nearly eight hours on Wednesday.
Four senators met with Biden in the Oval Office on Thursday, Sens. Tom Carper (D-Del.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.).
The group, with Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg attending by phone, discussed infrastructure.
Biden expressed his hope that Congress can reach a bipartisan deal on infrastructure.
“There’s a lot we have to do,” including improving “bridges in West Virginia” and “dangerous spots on Route 9,” he told attendees.
Reporters were ushered out even as Biden was answering questions about the impeachment trial. Biden’s media access has been strictly controlled during the early days of his presidency, in stark contrast to the previous administration.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki had told reporters on Wednesday that Biden made clear in a previous statement that “he felt the process should proceed as history and many laws predetermine.”
“And he is going to wait for the Senate to determine the outcome of this,” she added. “But, you know, his view is that his role is, should be currently focused on addressing the needs of the American people, putting people back to work, addressing the pandemic.”