• Fri. May 24th, 2024

Live updates: Biden impeachment inquiry hearing

Live updates: Biden impeachment inquiry hearing

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez speaks during a House Oversight Committee impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden, on Thursday in Washington, DC.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez speaks during a House Oversight Committee impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden, on Thursday in Washington, DC. Jacquelyn Martin/AP

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat from New York, blasted House Republicans at Thursday’s impeachment hearing, calling their antics “an embarrassment” and needling them for bringing in witnesses who don’t have firsthand knowledge of wrongdoing.

“Any serious impeachment investigation or inquiry relies on firsthand sworn testimony of witnesses to high crimes or misdemeanors,” Ocasio-Cortez said, before forcing all of the witnesses to acknowledge that they couldn’t offer any direct testimony about wrongdoing by the target of the impeachment inquiry, President Joe Biden.

The witnesses are legal scholars and fraud experts — and weren’t involved in any of Hunter Biden’s business dealings, which are at the center of the impeachment saga.

Instead, they offered their professional opinions about the evidence previously uncovered by House Republicans, information from Hunter Biden’s criminal cases, and press reports.

“This is an embarrassment. An embarrassment to the time of the people of this country,” continued Ocasio-Cortez said.

Democrats on the panel have also demanded Republicans call in Rudy Giuliani and one of his former associates, Lev Parnas, who sought dirt on President Biden in Ukraine.

Rep. Kweisi Mfume, a Democrat from Maryland, held up a sign during the impeachment inquiry hearing and repeatedly shouted “where in the world is Rudy Giuliani?”

Democrats have said that Giuliani and Parnas should be called in as witnesses because they would refute Republican allegations. They investigated President Biden over Ukraine in 2019 and did not find any wrongdoing.

“Where in the world is Rudy Giuliani? That’s how we got here, ladies and gentlemen. And this committee is afraid to bring him before us and put him on the record. Shame! And the question was raised. What does this have to do with it? It has everything to do with it” Mfume said.

Back in June, House Democrats released a transcript of Parnas’ interview with Congress in January 2020 that refute a key unverified allegation that President Joe Biden was involved in an illegal foreign bribery scheme. And in July, Parnas called on Comer to end his Biden family investigation in a letter obtained by CNN. 

In their effort to rebut Republican attacks on the foreign money Hunted Biden received, Democrats have pointed to the money that Trump’s son-in-law received from Saudi Arabia.

“We also know that just months after Jared left the White House, the Saudi royal family gave him $2 billion — with a B — into the Kushner hedge fund,” Rep. Mike Garcia, a Democrat from California, said. “This is a man who was put at the head of Middle East policy in the White House.”

The Democrats charged that Kushner’s actions were far worse than Hunter Biden’s, because Kushner worked in government, while Biden’s son did not.

“We also know that Hunter Biden never held any sort of public office, and there is no evidence that he ever influenced any kind of policy in the White House,” Garcia said.

Republicans have responded that Kushner had a business and expertise, while Hunter Biden did not have any expertise when he hired to the board of Ukrainian energy company Burisma.

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