California Rep. Devin Nunes, the House Intelligence Committee’s ranking Republican, blasted the public impeachment hearings launched on Wednesday as a “televised theatrical performance staged by the Democrats” in a fiery opening statement.
“This spectacle is doing great damage to our country,” fumed Nunes. “It’s nothing more than an impeachment process in search of a crime.”
Echoing many of the same terms used by President Trump to describe the Democrat-led impeachment hearing — alternately referring to it as a “hoax,” a “scam” and a “carefully orchestrated media smear campaign — Nunes charged that the proceeding was just the latest in long-running Democratic efforts to oust Trump from the White House.
Nunes also posited that Wednesday’s first witnesses at the live broadcast, longtime US ambassadors George Kent and William Taylor, could be participants in a Democrat-led effort.
“It seems you agreed, wittingly or unwittingly, to participate in a drama,” said Nunes to the pair. “But the main performance, the Russia hoax, has ended. And you have been cast in the low-rent Ukrainian sequel.”
Nunes charged that they and others were “witnesses deemed suitable for television by the Democrats [who] were put through a closed-door audition process.”
The Republican made the statement as fellow California Rep. Adam Schiff, the panel’s Democratic chair, sat stone-faced to his right having just delivered his own opening remarks.
Nunes in particular objected to Democrats’ refusal to summon Hunter Biden to testify.
In a July phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Trump requested that the nation probe Biden and his former Vice President father for alleged wrongdoing in the nation.
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