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As it happenedended1696077089

Biden impeachment latest: GOP’s own witnesses contradict main claims in ‘disaster’ first hearing

Without providing solid evidence, Republicans claimed Biden lied about his financial gains

Gustaf Kilander
Washington, DC
Saturday 30 September 2023 13:31 BST
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Raskin says Republicans don’t have ‘even a dripping water pistol’ in impeachment case

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Louise Thomas

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House Republicans held their first impeachment hearing into President Joe Biden on Thursday, with members of both sides branding it a “disaster” for the GOP.

The White House has dismissed the allegations of corruption and the impeachment proceedings as a baseless political stunt. Former President Donald Trump has pushed House Republicans to impeach Mr Biden as revenge for his two impeachments.

All four of the witnesses at the hearing told Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Democrat of New York, that they weren’t presenting any firsthand accounts of wrongdoing by Mr Biden.

A senior Republican aide told CNN that “picking witnesses that refute House Republicans’ arguments for impeachment is mind-blowing. This is an unmitigated disaster”.

White House spokesman Ian Sams weighed in on the impeachment hearing.

“These are the Republicans’ own witnesses! Admitting there is not evidence to warrant this impeachment stunt Proving this is nothing more than a baseless wild goose chase,” he wrote on X.

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AOC and Raskin chide MTG for previously showing nude images

Gustaf Kilander28 September 2023 20:15
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California Democrat uses speaker’s own words against Biden impeachment

California Democrat Katie Porter noted that a few years ago, when Mr Trump was being impeached, Speaker Kevin McCarthy was pushing for a vote of the House to begin the proceedings, something he avoided now when launching the Biden probe.

Gustaf Kilander28 September 2023 20:31
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GOP witness admits no evidence to impeach Biden at first impeachment hearing

House Republicans’ first effort to justify the impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden demanded by former president Donald Trump and far-right members of the GOP conference ended without a single piece of evidence presented linking Mr Biden to any wrongdoing whatsoever.

The panel’s chairman, Representative James Comer of Kentucky, opened the hearing by claiming that his GOP colleagues had assembled “a mountain of evidence” that will show that the president “abused his public office for his family’s financial gain,” adding later that his committee would “follow the money and the evidence to provide accountability” for Mr Biden’s alleged wrongdoing.

Representative Jamie Raskin of Maryland, the oversight committee’s top Democrat, derided the panel’s efforts as “an impeachment drive based on a long debunked and discredited lie” and said the Republicans “don’t have a shred of evidence against President Biden for an impeachable offence”.

The all-day session before the House Oversight Committee took place just days before the federal government is set to run out of operating funds at the end of the 2023 fiscal year, and focused largely on widely-discredited and long-ago debunked conspiracy theories about Mr Biden and his son, attorney and former lobbyist turned artist Hunter Biden.

The allegations against the 46th president, which centre around the younger Mr Biden’s work on the board of a Ukrainian energy company, were first prolmugated by disgraced former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani in 2018 and 2019, and formed the basis of Mr Trump’s attempt to extort Ukrainian Volodymyr Zelensky during a now-infamous July 2019 phone call — an incident which led to the first of Mr Trump’s two impeachment trials.

Andrew Feinberg28 September 2023 20:33
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Democrats note Steve Bannon slammed calling Turley as witness

Gustaf Kilander28 September 2023 20:58
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Raskin calls on MTG ‘to not introduce any pornography'

Following her previous use of nude images of Hunter Biden, Maryland Democrat Jamie Raskin called for Georgia Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene to “be instructed to not introduce any pornography today”.

Gustaf Kilander28 September 2023 21:15
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‘The majority forgot to bring the evidence with them today’

Jamie Raskin said in his closing statement, “Online, everybody's making fun of this Seinfeld impeachment and impeachment hearing about nothing apparently, two days before the government is about to shut down. But I want to say that all four of these witnesses have done a great service for us, not just the Republicans but for the Democrats too. And I want to thank them for their for their patience, their intellectual honesty and their surprising consensus on the key questions”.

“When I started out as a young assistant attorney general, I went to court I remember my first day of work, and I heard a judge lecture a lawyer by saying, counsel, you have forgotten the very first rule of being a lawyer, which is when you go to court, don't forget to bring the evidence with you. And I'm afraid the majority forgot to bring the evidence with them today,” he added.

Gustaf Kilander28 September 2023 21:30
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Raskin brings up John Eastman in closing statement

Mr Raskin said that he doesn’t “think you could find a constitutional law professor who would say there is sufficient evidence. Maybe John Eastman but I think he may be detained these days”.

Gustaf Kilander28 September 2023 22:00
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Florida Democrat lays out timeline of impeachment inquiry

Florida Democrat Maxwell Frost highlighted the timeline of the impeachment inquiry and how Speaker Kevin McCarthy changed his mind on whether a vote was needed for the probe in less than two weeks.

He also noted that “Mr Turley is stopping here on the way to his next Fox News hit”.

Gustaf Kilander28 September 2023 22:45
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VIDEO: Raskin says Republicans don’t have ‘even a dripping water pistol’ in impeachment case

Raskin says Republicans don't have 'even a dripping water pistol' in impeachment case
The Independent28 September 2023 23:30
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Even Republicans think the impeachment hearing is a ‘disaster'

This was supposed to be a big moment for the Republican members of the House, but so far, their first impeachment hearing against Joe Biden has been a “disaster,” according to GOP sources.

Some of Republicans’ own witnesses testified they don’t think there’s evidence linking Joe Biden to any high crimes.

“I do not believe that the current evidence would support articles of impeachment,” Georgetown Law Professor Jonathan Turley told lawmakers.

Forensic accountant Bruce Dubinsky, meanwhile, testified that there is no evidence connecting the president to illegal activities, saying the Republican attacks on Mr Biden are akin to if Hunter Biden was pulled over for speeding in a car owned by Joe Biden, and they want to give Joe Biden the speeding ticket.

“Picking witnesses that refute House Republicans’ arguments for impeachment is mind-blowing,” a Republican aide told CNN. “This is an unmitigated disaster.”

Read more in-depth analysis of the hearing from Ahmed Baba.

Even some Republicans admit Biden ‘impeachment’ hearing is a disaster

If Republicans can smear Biden as corrupt, then they can make Donald Trump, who is facing 91 criminal charges across four indictments, appear less corrupt to voters

Josh Marcus28 September 2023 23:43

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