Democrats vs. Republicans as impeachment hearings start

Washington-DC

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — The impeachment inquiry came out of the shadows and into the light during public hearings on Capitol Hill Wednesday, but the political divisions remained the same.

Ambassador Bill Taylor and fellow U.S. diplomat George Kent provided details supporting a whistleblower’s complaint that President Donald Trump asked the president of Ukraine to investigate political opponent Joe Biden. Each said the Trump administration froze aid to the Ukrainian military, creating a national security threat.

“The meeting (Ukrainian) President (Volodymyr) Zelensky wanted was conditioned on the investigation” into Biden, Taylor testified. “I said, I think it’s crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign.”

“It was unexpected and most unfortunate,” Kent said.

House Democrats, who are moving the inquiry forward, say the testimony shows abuse of presidential power.

“Have you ever before seen an instance where an ambassador was forced out by the president following a smear campaign?” Rep. Andre Carson, D-Ind., asked.

“I have not,” Kent replied.

“If this is not impeachable conduct, what is?” House Intelligence Committee Chair Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., wondered.

The diplomats say they were only there to share facts and not to specifically support impeachment. Regardless, House Republicans said they didn’t make a clear case.

“We’ve got six people having four conversations in one sentence and you just told me this is where you got your clear understanding,” Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, said.

“This spectacle is doing great damage to our country,” Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif, said.

Republicans called the hearing political theater.

“It’s drama,” Rep. Bill Johnson, R-Ohio, told Nexstar outside the committee chamber. “We’re going to end up in the same place.”

“Why are we doing that and why are we wasting the people’s time?” wondered Rep. David Kustoff, R-Tenn.

At the White House, Trump called it a hoax, saying “there’s nothing there.”

But Democrats say the evidence speaks for itself.

“I think that we’ve got to see what the witnesses are going to say,” Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., said.

The hearings continue Friday.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest Stories

More Local News

Recent Videos

WATCH: Best friend reunion at Georgia pumpkin patch goes viral

Prepare for more widespread snow

Minot Swimming

Prepping your fireplace for winter

Shelters prep for winter

Plays of the week October 18

Robert One Minute 10-18

COVID-19 ND Watch 10-18-20

Minotauros Hockey

WDA Swimming

Robert Suhr KX News At 6pm 10-17-20

Robert One Minute 10-17

Firefighter surprised at the hospital

Getting to know Minot, one mile at a time

Politics & the pandemic

Unique approach to combating human trafficking in N.D.

COVID-19 ND Watch 10-17-20

FNFF: Class A

FNFF: 9-Man & Class AA

More Video

KX News Trending Stories

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss