House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said Wednesday, Jan. 15, that former Vice President Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden is “not a relevant witness” at the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
“The relevant question is relevance. In any trial you call witnesses who have information about the allegations, about the charges,” Nadler told reporters. “The allegations, for which there is a mountain of evidence, is that the president betrayed his country by trying to extort Ukraine by withholding $391 million in military aid that Congress had voted in order to get Ukraine to announce an investigation of a domestic political opponent—that is the allegation.”
“Any witness who has information about whether that is true or not true, is a relevant witness,” he continued. “Anybody, like Hunter Biden, who has no information about any of that, is not a relevant witness.”
Nadler, who will serve as one of the House managers, claimed, “Any trial judge in this country would rule such a witness as irrelevant and inadmissible.”
The House voted along party lines Wednesday to transmit the articles of impeachment against President Trump to the Senate. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) had been holding on the articles for a month, in an attempt to seek concessions from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) in calling Democrat-sought witnesses.
Question regarding new witness testimony will likely be a hotly debated issue in the Senate impeachment trial as senators from both sides have been seeking their own witnesses.
House Republicans included Biden on their proposed witness list to testify before the House Intelligence Committee impeachment inquiry but their witnesses were not approved by the chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.).
The most relevant two witnesses on the Obstruction of Congress charge are Jerry Nadler and Adam Schiff. https://t.co/B5r88jHnUJ
— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) January 15, 2020
President Trump asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to look into the Bidens’ alleged corrupt activities in Ukraine after it emerged that Joe Biden bragging about how he successfully applied pressure to the country to remove the prosecutor who was investigating Burisma Holdings—Ukraine’s largest private gas company that reportedly paid his son $50,000 per month to sit on its board.
House Republicans noted that former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs George Kent, who testified before the House, raised concerns about “the appearance of a conflict of interest stemming from Mr. Biden’s position on Burisma’s board.”
In his closing arguments before the vote to appoint House managers for the Articles of Impeachment, Jerry Nadler went back to his “overwhelming evidence” troupe, but he is the one who prevented GOP-requested witnesses from coming to the Judiciary Committee to testify.
— Rep Andy Biggs (@RepAndyBiggsAZ) January 15, 2020
McConnell has vowed to address the issue of witnesses after the trial has started, adding, “Both sides will call witnesses they want to hear from.”
When asked directly about calling Hunter Biden to testify before the Senate, he said, “I can’t imagine only the witnesses our Democratic colleagues want to call would be called.”