Lindsey Graham warned that if Democrats follow through with their impeachment efforts against President Trump he will be sure to call whistleblowers to testify publicly.
The Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman spoke with Fox News host Maria Bartiromo about how he plans to use his subpoena power if Democrats in the House move forward with the impeachment process, vowing he will give the president the opportunity to confront the whistleblowers bringing allegations against him.
(Video: Fox News)
“Here’s what’s going to happen: If the whistleblowers’ allegations are turned into an impeachment article it’s imperative that the whistleblower be interviewed in public, under oath, and cross-examined,” Graham said on “Sunday Morning Futures,” adding that no one in America “goes to jail or has anything done to them without confronting their accuser.”
The South Carolina Republican noted that the whistleblowers will have to “come forward, under oath, testify so the public can judge their credibility” and promised that “if that doesn’t happen in the House, I’ll make sure it happens in the Senate.”
On Sunday, a second unidentified whistleblower was confirmed who reportedly had information to supported the allegations made by the first whistleblower about Trump’s July phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The president challenged House Democrats to “Keep them coming!” in a tweet reacting to the reports.
The first so-called second hand information “Whistleblower” got my phone conversation almost completely wrong, so now word is they are going to the bench and another “Whistleblower” is coming in from the Deep State, also with second hand info. Meet with Shifty. Keep them coming!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 6, 2019
Bartiromo pressed Graham about follow-through by the Republicans.
“So you will put a spotlight on it, if you see it is only being done behind closed doors, you will subpoena the whistleblower then?” she asked, citing the example of Trump’s former envoy to Ukraine, Kurt Volker, who met with lawmakers last week in a closed-door hearing.
“Yeah, I will use [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi’s words: This is about the Constitution and democracy,” Graham replied.
“There can be no valid inquiry unless Democrats vote. And once you vote, there can be no valid impeachment process unless the president can confront the witnesses against him,” the GOP lawmaker said.
“Who are these people? Where do they come from?” he asked, echoing remarks he tweeted last week.
Who were these people?
What were they up to?
Only by full disclosure can President @realDonaldTrump adequately defend against these accusations.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) October 3, 2019
Graham had also called out House Democrats for “hiding” behind Pelosi and demanded a “John Hancock moment” in which they formalize the impeachment inquiry with a vote.
We need a ‘John Hancock Moment’ from House Democrats before moving forward on impeachment.
It’s past time for House Democrats to put their names on the line as SUPPORTING or OPPOSING an impeachment inquiry.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) October 4, 2019
Graham also told Bartiromo that the report of a second whistleblower on the Ukraine phone call reminded him of the accusations against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearing.
“Remember Kavanaugh. It started with one complaint that wound up being unverifiable, a complaint against Judge Kavanaugh about a party that took place in high school 30 years ago, without any notice of where it happened and when it happened, and everybody described to be there said it didn’t happen,” he told Bartiromo.
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) October 6, 2019
“And five more allegations came after that,” Graham added. “What did we learn in Kavanaugh? That they were coaching witnesses and they were piling on to try to create an impression that Judge Kavanaugh was a flawed human being.”
“This is Kavanaugh all over again,” the senator declared, wondering if the whistleblowers were coached by Democrats. “Does this second whistle-blower, if there is one, are they within the intel community? And what is it about the intel community and Trump that is so off-base here?”
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