Adam Schiff Refuses to Commit to Testifying in Impeachment Trial
Chair of the Intelligence Committee is cornered in interview
During Sunday's broadcast of CNN’s “State of the Union,” Schiff was asked if he would testify in the trial, something Trump himself said he would like to see.
“There is nothing to testify about. I think if the president or his allies in the Senate persist, it means they are not serious about what they are doing.”
Host Jake Tapper interjected:
“Sorry for interrupting. They would cite David Kendall, President Clinton’s attorney, got to cross-examine Ken Starr. I understand you are not an independent council, but you did lead the investigation.”
“I’m not a special counsel. I don’t work for a separate branch of government. I’m not in the Justice Department. I am more in a position that Henry Hyde was during the impeachment or Peter Rodino or Sam Ervin.," he said.
"They were not fact witnesses. What would I offer in terms of testimony that I heard Dr. Hill in open hearing say such and such?" Schiff asked.
"That is not pertinent. The only reason for them to go through with this is to mollify the president, and that is not a good reason to try to call a member of Congress as a witness.”
“But there are questions you could answer about your staff having been approached by the whistleblower before he filed his complaint and other matters, things that you could shed light on our explain. Would you refuse to go if the Senate wanted you to come as a witness?”
“I don’t want to comment on it except to say that if they go down this road, it shows a fundamental lack of seriousness, a willingness to try to turn this into a circus-like the president would like, and I hope they don’t go there."
"There are others who are fact witnesses. We didn’t call in Senator Johnson. We’re not calling in Devin Nunes," he added.
"We didn’t call in Senator Graham. There is a far stronger case for people like Senator Graham than the chairman doing the investigative committee work in the House.”
On Friday, Trump said he looked forward to a Senate impeachment trial before blasting the House Intelligence Committee investigation for blocking due process for the Republicans and the White House.
“There’s only one person that I want to see more, and that’s Adam Schiff … I want to see Adam Schiff testify about the “whistleblower,” who’s a fake whistleblower,” Trump said.
Last week, Schiff branded Trump a “charlatan” before vowing to send him back to the “golden throne he came from” during a speech at the California Democratic Party State Convention in Long Beach.
“Two years ago, I stood before you, and I urged you to resist, and you did, but we are more than a resistance now. We are a majority!” Schiff said.
“We are a majority in one House, and we will become a majority in the other, and we will send that charlatan [President Trump] in the White House back to the golden throne he came from,” he continued.
"The most grave threat to the life and health of our democracy comes from within — from a president without ethical compass, without understanding of or devotion to our Constitution."
There is nothing more dangerous than an unethical president who believes that he is above the law."