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Republicans demand Hunter Biden and whistleblower appear at televised Donald Trump impeachment hearings

Republicans demand Hunter Biden and whistleblower appear at televised Donald Trump impeachment hearingsRepublicans have demanded that Joe Biden's son and an anonymous whistleblower should give evidence during highly anticipated televised impeachment hearings this week. It came as America's big three networks – CBS, NBC and ABC – all announced wall-to-wall coverage. They will break into scheduled programming to carry the sessions live, so voters can watch the case against Donald Trump. The three witnesses at the hearings on Wednesday and Friday will be George Kent, a top State Department official, William Taylor, a US diplomat in Ukraine, and Marie Yovanovitch, the former US ambassador to Ukraine. But Republicans want to her from the whistleblower who kickstarted the impeachment inquiry after complaining about a July 25 telephone call between Mr Trump and Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Mr Trump is accused of holding up $ 392 million in military aid in an effort to pressure Mr Zelenskiy into investigating Joe Biden, and his son Hunter, for corruption. Mr Trump vehemently denies doing so. Hunter Biden sat on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company, while his father, as vice president, was heading Ukraine policy for the Obama administration. Hunter and Joe Biden Credit: Reuters Congressman Devin Nunes, the lead Republican on the House intelligence committee, which will host the televised impeachment hearings, demanded Hunter Biden and the whistleblower appear. But Adam Schiff, the Democrat committee chairman, refused to call them, and accused Republicans of trying to turn impeachment into a "sham investigation of the Bidens." The televised impeachment inquiry sessions come 46 years after America was transfixed by the Watergate hearings. Around three quarters of the US population watched at least some of the Watergate hearings on television. A major difference this time will be social media, with Republicans and Democrats able to react instantly to developments. Days before the hearings Republicans appeared increasingly fractured over how to defend the president. Some Republican senators and members of Congress have stuck to Mr Trump's description of his call with Mr Zelenskiy as "perfect," and maintained there was no "quid pro quo" offered by the president. Others have suggested there was an "appropriate quid pro quo". And, some said his behaviour raised concerns but did not rise to the level of impeachment. There were also some who refused to discuss the matter at all, on the basis they would be jurors in an eventual Senate trial of Mr Trump. Several Republican senators declared they would not even watch the televised hearings this week. They included Lindsey Graham, a friend of Mr Trump, who called it a "sham". He added: “It’s being driven by political people. I think this is a bunch of crap." Senator Lindsey Graham says he will be one of the few Americans not watching the live impeachment inquiry hearings Credit: AP Alex Conant, a Republican strategist, said: "It’s not good. It’s hard to rally people to your side without a coherent and sustainable message." Meanwhile, Mick Mulvaney, Mr Trump's acting chief of staff, asked a court to decide whether he should adhere to a request from Congress to give evidence privately to the impeachment inquiry.The White House has ordered him not to do so. As he prepared to watch the televised hearings Mr Trump attended a college American football game in Alabama, where more than 100,000 people packed into a stadium. Mr Trump at the Alabama game Credit: AP When Mr Trump appeared on a big screen he was cheered and there were chants of "USA, USA." Outside the stadium an inflatable 20ft-high "Baby Trump" protest balloon was slashed and deflated. A man reportedly ran at the balloon with a knife and cut an 8ft long gash in it. The "Baby Trump" protest balloon after it was attacked Credit: The Tuscaloosa News Local police said Hoyt Deau Hutchinson, 32, was arrested and charged with criminal mischief. Mr Trump's reception in Alabama was a sharp contrast to the booing when he attended a World Series baseball game in Washington two weeks ago



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‘Fool’s trap’: Trump hits out at Republicans trying to form new impeachment defence ahead of public hearings

‘Fool’s trap’: Trump hits out at Republicans trying to form new impeachment defence ahead of public hearingsDonald Trump has hit out at Republicans trying to formulate a new defence for him ahead of the impeachment inquiry ramping up this week with televised public hearings.The president tweeted: “The call to the Ukrainian President was PERFECT. Read the Transcript! There was NOTHING said that was in any way wrong. Republicans, don’t be led into the fools trap of saying it was not perfect, but is not impeachable. No, it is much stronger than that. NOTHING WAS DONE WRONG!”



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House Republicans Will Call Hunter Biden to Testify Publicly as Their Top Impeachment Witness: Report

House Republicans Will Call Hunter Biden to Testify Publicly as Their Top Impeachment Witness: ReportHouse Republicans intend to call Hunter Biden as their top witness in the impeachment inquiry, according to a list of witnesses obtained by Fox News on Saturday, just days before public impeachment hearings will commence.Biden, whose time on the board of Ukrainian gas company Burisma has become a central issue in the impeachment inquiry, denied that his business dealings in Ukraine and his father’s position as vice president represented a conflict of interest during an interview last month, but called the decision to join Burisma “poor judgement on my part.”In October, a U.S. State Department official told impeachment investigators that he worried Ukrainian officials would use Hunter Biden’s position at the company to influence the vice president, and conveyed his opinion to Joe Biden’s office, only for a staffer to tell him that the vice president didn’t have the “bandwidth” to address the issue.Earlier this week, Republican senators Chuck Grassley and Ron Johnson asked the State Department for documents pertaining to Burisma, after email records showed that Biden and business partner Devon Archer scheduled meetings with senior State Department officials in 2015 and 2016.Republicans also plan on calling on Archer to testify, as well as the anonymous whistleblower who first raised concerns over the July call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.“Because President Trump should be afforded an opportunity to confront his accusers, the anonymous whistleblower should testify,” House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes (R., Calif.) wrote in a letter to Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff on Saturday.“Given the multiple discrepancies between the whistleblower’s complaint and the closed-door testimony of the witnesses, it is imperative that the American people hear definitively how the whistleblower developed his or her information, and who else the whistleblower may have fed the information he or she gathered and how that treatment of classified information may have led to the false narrative being perpetrated by the Democrats during this process.”On October 2, the New York Times reported that the whistleblower communicated with  Schiff’s office before filing a formal complaint.It is unclear whether Schiff will allow Republicans to call Biden and other witnesses, as current House rules on the inquiry allow Republicans to only call witnesses who are “authorized” by Schiff.Nunes, in his letter, said that Republicans expect Schiff “to call each of the witnesses listed above to ensure that the Democrats’ ‘impeachment inquiry’ treats the President with fairness, as promised by Speaker Pelosi.”



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House Republicans requested that Hunter Biden and the whistleblower publicly testify in impeachment hearings

House Republicans requested that Hunter Biden and the whistleblower publicly testify in impeachment hearingsRep. Devin Nunes echoed the White House's jabs that the impeachment inquiry launched by House Democrats last month has been "unfair" so far.



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Trump impeachment: Republicans request Hunter Biden and anonymous whistleblower appear as witnesses in hearings

Trump impeachment: Republicans request Hunter Biden and anonymous whistleblower appear as witnesses in hearingsRepublicans have demanded Hunter Biden and the whistleblower who sparked the impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump should testify at the upcoming hearings.The son of Joe Biden is included in a list of witnesses who the GOP have asked to appear so the US president “can be afforded the opportunity to confront his accusers”.



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Some Kentucky Republicans warn against election challenge

Some Kentucky Republicans warn against election challengeSome Kentucky Republicans are warning Gov. Matt Bevin against challenging the election results in his reelection bid unless he finds evidence of massive fraud.



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Sessions Announces Senate Run, Criticizes Republicans for Not Backing Trump Strongly Enough

Sessions Announces Senate Run, Criticizes Republicans for Not Backing Trump Strongly EnoughFormer attorney general Jeff Sessions announced Thursday evening that he will enter the race for his former Alabama Senate seat.In an appearance on Fox News Tucker Carlson Tonight, Sessions confirmed his entry into the race and addressed his tumultuous relationship with President Trump. While serving as attorney general, Sessions recused himself from the investigation into possible collusion between the Trump 2016 presidential campaign and Russian agents, prompting harsh and sustained criticism from Trump."The whole [investigation] was very painful for him," Sessions said, "but, as painful and as prolonged as it was, it did clear him of Russian collusion, and I'm certainly glad that finally happened."Sessions also criticized fellow Republicans for not working hard enough to advance Trump's policies."We need to get some Republicans moving," said Sessions, who "haven't been pushing hard enough to advance the Trump agenda. And so that's what I look forward to doing, and I think I can contribute to that."A Trump endorsement would represent a sharp reversal in the relationship between the president and one of his earliest supporters and campaign surrogates.In July 2017, the President publicly admitted that he regretted appointing Sessions to his cabinet. "Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job, and I would have picked somebody else," he said during an interview with the New York Times.Sessions recused himself in May 2017 after it was revealed he had not disclosed two meetings with Russian ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak that occurred during the 2016 presidential campaign.“I guess I’d rather go into a Republican primary with the president’s support than without it,” Senator Kevin Cramer of North Dakota commented. “But Jeff Sessions is iconic, and obviously, he’ll be a player right out of the chute.”“I think the whole campaign is going to be around what President Trump said about Jeff Sessions," said Senator Lindsey Graham. "I think Jeff knows what he’s getting into, and we’ll leave it up to the voters in Alabama.”Trump is expected to attend a pivotal college football game in Alabama this weekend, but it is unclear which Alabama senate candidate he will meet with during his visit.The National Republican Senatorial Committee will remain neutral during the primary. The list of primary candidates includes Representative Bradley Byrne (R., Ala.), former Auburn University football coach Tommy Tuberville, and former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore. Moore lost a special election for the same Alabama senate seat to Democrat Doug Jones in a 2017 after Moore was accused of multiple instances of sexual assault.



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House Republicans appear to be throwing Giuliani, Sondland, and Mulvaney under the bus to save Trump

House Republicans appear to be throwing Giuliani, Sondland, and Mulvaney under the bus to save TrumpHouse Republicans appear to have a new strategy to defend President Trump from mounting evidence that he used the U.S. government to squeeze Ukraine for politically beneficial investigations of Democratic rivals past and present: Talk loudly and throw other Trump allies under the bus. Specifically, The Washington Post reports, Trump's House defenders are effectively offering up U.S. Ambassador Gordon Sondland, Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, and acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney "to be fall guys" in the Ukraine scandal.All three Trump allies played overlapping roles in the Ukraine story: Sondland informed Ukraine it had to investigate Joe and Hunter Biden to get a White House audience and unfreeze military aid; Trump told his ad hoc Ukraine team to go through Giuliani, who reportedly specified the targets Ukraine needed to investigate and was also behind the ouster of U.S. Ambassador Marie Yovanovich; and Mulvaney was involved in freezing the Ukraine aid and admitted on camera it was tied to Ukraine investigating the Democratic National Committee, a statement he later tried to walk back.House Republicans have now started "sowing doubts about whether Sondland, Giuliani, and Mulvaney were actually representing the president or freelancing to pursue their own agendas," the Post reports. This is just one theory Republicans are testing out — others include that Trump didn't have "corrupt intent," that quid pro quos are commonplace, and that Trump is too incompetent to carry one off. "In a sign of how the GOP is scrambling, however, many of those theories run counter to each other," the Post notes.The blame-the-aides strategy also isn't without risks. Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen flipped after being fed under the bus, and on MSNBC Thursday night, former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner speculated to Ari Melber that if Giuliani is charged in either of the two investigations where he's a central figure, "there's nowhere to go but up," and rather than risk prison, "he's gonna sing." More stories from theweek.com The Crown's Olivia Colman had an awkward run-in with Prince William Trump claims 'I don't know' Gordon Sondland. Here's how ridiculous that is. If Trump wins re-election while losing by 5 million votes



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Republicans break with Trump and Rand on whistleblower unmasking

Republicans break with Trump and Rand on whistleblower unmaskingStanding next to President Trump on Monday night, Sen. Rand Paul called for the media to unmask the Ukraine whistleblower and was cheered by rallygoers in Kentucky.



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The whistleblower at the heart of the impeachment inquiry has offered to answer written questions from House Republicans, their lawyer says

The whistleblower at the heart of the impeachment inquiry has offered to answer written questions from House Republicans, their lawyer saysThe lawyer for the whistleblower whose complaint incited the impeachment inquiry is willing to answer written questions from House Republicans.



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