Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a well known, die-hard conservative constitutionalist, is attempting to draw former Vice President Joe Biden and the whistleblower who kicked off the impeachment proceedings against President Trump to come forward and testify in the Senate trial by floating the idea of witness reciprocity.
Cruz pitched the idea to GOP leadership on Tuesday after announcing in December that they wanted to subpoena former national security adviser John Bolton, acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, and other top aides to Trump.
Here’s more from The Washington Examiner:
His proposed strategy would mean that if Democrats call their witnesses, Republicans could call their own as well, such as former Vice President Joe Biden, his son Hunter Biden, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, and the whistleblower at the center of the impeachment process.
“We’ll be dealing with the witness issue at the appropriate time into the trial. And I think it’s certainly appropriate to point out that both sides would want to call witnesses if they wanted to hear from them,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said about Cruz’s idea, according to Fox News. “So if you get to that issue, I can’t imagine that only the witnesses our Democratic colleagues want to call will be called.”Trending:
House Democrats passed two articles of impeachment against Trump late last year for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress after Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. During the call, Trump asked Zelensky to “do us a favor” and investigate corruption allegations against Biden and his son’s business dealings in the country. Crucial military aid to Ukraine was then temporarily held up.
Bolton, according to aides familiar with the White House’s relations to Ukraine, was uncomfortable with what he called a “drug deal” of a policy on Ukraine.
This is a win-win strategy for Republicans. If Democrats want to get at Bolton and others, this provides them with an opportunity to grill Biden over his arm twisting of a Ukraine prosecutor during an investigation into his son’s business dealings. If they deny it, then they don’t get the opportunity to have Bolton and things move forward.
We’ll have to wait and see what happens with Cruz’s idea, but it certainly couldn’t hurt anything.