Graham: Impeachment “Dead on Arrival” in Senate if Whistleblower not Called to Testify in House

“SOMEBODY FROM THE ‘DEEP STATE'”

by Sharon Rondeau

(Nov. 10, 2019) — On this morning’s “Sunday Morning Futures,” Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham said it will be “impossible” for the Senate to consider a bill of impeachment against President Trump if the House of Representatives does not call upon the Ukraine “whistleblower” to testify to set forth the grounds upon which Trump is accused of wrongdoing.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA28) is leading an “impeachment inquiry” sparked by a complaint filed by the alleged “whistleblower” made public in September.  In his lengthy complaint, replete with sizable footnotes and a classified attachment, the individual cited second- or third-hand information claiming that Trump abused his power during a July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy by asking for political favors.

Trump had asked Zelenskiy, who was elected in April on an anti-corruption platform, to “do me a favor” by investigating whether or not there was wrongdoing under the Obama regime in relation to Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings and U.S.-taxpayer dollars, then-Vice President Joseph Biden and his son, Hunter.

Last month, Graham introduced a resolution condemning the “process” by which Schiff, and more generally, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, are conducting the “impeachment inquiry.”  On Sunday, Graham told host Maria Bartiromo that an “outside counsel” is normally the investigator into possible impeachment grounds of a president and not a politician.

Historically, the House Judiciary Committee has launched impeachment investigations, which Graham said is another of his objections to the ongoing process.

Schiff has scheduled public hearings beginning Wednesday from at least three individuals who testified behind closed doors in recent weeks, one of whom, former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, has been accused by Fox News’s Tucker Carlson of untruthfulness based on emails he obtained between a Democrat congressional staffer and Yovanovitch which contradict her testimony.

On Saturday evening, Schiff responded in the negative to a letter from House Intel Committee ranking member Devin Nunes requesting that eight witnesses be called to testify.  Republicans wish to hear from the whistleblower, Hunter Biden, former special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker, former National Security Council member Tim Morrison, and others.

Nunes also wants Schiff to testify in private, a request he put in writing on Friday evening.  According to Nunes and President Trump, Schiff’s office provided early support to the “whistleblower” without initially revealing that fact in a public hearing at which Acting Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Joseph Maguire testified.

Schiff originally said the whistleblower would promptly testify but has backtracked on that statement, now claiming that hearing from him or her is “redundant and unnecessary.”

The whistleblower comes from the U.S. “intelligence community,” Fox News has reported, and Bartiromo suggested to Graham that he or she has connections with former CIA Director John Brennan, who has positioned himself as a fierce Trump opponent and advocate of the impeachment inquiry.

Between 2014 and this past April, Hunter Biden sat on the board of directors of Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings, a role he began when his father served not only as vice president, but also as the U.S. liaison with Ukraine under Obama.  In January 2018, the elder Biden bragged publicly that he was responsible for having Ukraine’s then-chief prosecutor fired in March 2016 by threatening to withhold $1.5 billion in U.S. aid.

The younger Biden and his business partner, Devon Archer, both drew lucrative salaries from the arrangement, multiple media sources have reported. Fox News and others sources have reported that evidence exists of a second lucrative business arrangement gleaned from Hunter Biden’s flight to China with his father on Air Force Two in 2013.

The former prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, claimed in a sworn affidavit that he had been investigating Burisma and its connections to Hunter Biden, among others, when he was pressured to resign by then-Ukrainian president Petro Poroschenko.

The same day Pelosi announced the “impeachment inquiry,” the White House released what it said was a composite transcript from approximately a half-dozen notetakers who listened to the call in the White House Situation Room as it took place. In the complaint, the whistleblower claimed he was told that the White House handled the transcript of the call in an unusual manner to hide its accessibility.

“It’s impossible to bring this case forward in my view, fairly, without us knowing who the whistleblower is and having a chance to cross-examine them about any biases they may have.  So if they don’t call the whistleblower in the House, this thing is dead on arrival in the Senate,” Graham said.

Bartiromo responded that based on various reports, the whistleblower “worked for” Brennan and had connections to Joe Biden, which has been reported by The Washington Examiner.

Graham predicted that “When you find out who the whistleblower is, I’m confident you’re going to find out it’s somebody from the Deep State; you’re going to find out that they had interactions with Schiff, and this thing is going to stink to high heaven, and the only reason we don’t know who the whistleblower is, that it hurts their cause.” [sic]


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