House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) saved his harshest words for last.
The committee wrapped its second week of public impeachment hearings after hearing from former top adviser on Russia Fiona Hill and diplomat to Ukraine David Holmes. And while Democrats and Republicans still have more witnesses they'd like to hear from, Schiff delivered what felt like a finale at the end of Thursday's testimonies.
Schiff used much of his closing statement to tear down a constant refrain heard from Republicans throughout the hearings. They constantly brushed off witnesses' and the Ukraine whistleblower's testimonies as "hearsay," which Schiff called "absurd" because it requires taking President Trump at his word, and then "imagin[ing] he said something else ... about actually fighting corruption."
Rep. Adam Schiff says Republican characterization of testimony in the impeachment hearings as "hearsay" is "absurd."
"That would be like saying you can't rely on the testimony of the burglars during Watergate because it's only hearsay." https://t.co/i5y2bszIE0 pic.twitter.com/0GWq6NQ2T7
— ABC News (@ABC) November 21, 2019
Schiff then compared what witnesses have said about Trump to former President Richard Nixon's impeachment scandal, saying today's situation is "far more serious than a third-rate burglary of the Democratic headquarters." But the reason there isn't more definite action being taken against Trump is summed up in "the difference between that Congress and this one," Schiff continued. "Where is Howard Baker? Where are the people that are willing to go beyond their party to look to their duty?"
Rep. Adam Schiff: "The president says really quite spontaneously — it's not as if he was asked in this way — 'no quid pro quo.'"
"This is the 'I'm not a crook' defense. You say it and I guess, that's the end of it," Schiff says, citing Nixon's defense. https://t.co/Q5w6PVVxew pic.twitter.com/HVMUNDVUvJ
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) November 21, 2019
And with that, Schiff adjourned.
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