2019-11-22 17:47:30 UTC
but claims he does NOT believe the House will vote to impeach him
Trump spoke about the looming potential of a Senate impeachment trial during a
lengthy call-in with Fox News
White House officials huddled Thursday with GOP senators over organizing a
Said the only witness he wants to call more than Hunter Biden is Adam Schiff
Schiff oversaw hearings where witnesses testified to a 'quid pro quo' and said
Rudy Giuliani was on a 'political errand' for Trump in Ukraine
Says he also wants Republicans to call whistle-blower to testify
He called Speaker Nancy Pelosi 'crazy as a bedbug'
President Donald Trump said Friday he wants a Senate impeachment trial, and that
Republicans will use it to call Democratic Intelligence Committee Chair Adam
Schiff as a witness.
He made the statement in an extended call-in interview with Fox News hours after
Schiff concluded a week of public impeachment hearings with a blistering closing
statement accusing the president of corruption.
Trump blasted the House hearings process, and spoke in language repeatedly
using the term 'we' that emphasized new coordination with Republicans in
Congress over impeachment strategy.
'Dont forget there was no due process. You cant have lawyers. We couldnt have
any witnesses,' he complained about the House hearings.
'We want to call the whistleblower. But you know who I want as the first
witness?' Trump said.
'Frankly, I want a trial,' he said.
'Number One there should never be an impeachment. This is not an impeachment.
That phone call was totally appropriate,' he said of his phone call with
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, which was the focus of a whistle-blower
complaint. Trump says the call was 'perfect,' although witnesses were asked to
comment on his request for a 'favor' from Zelensky and mentioning investigations
of the Bidens.
Fox host Brian Kilmeade repeatedly tried to get Trump to explain why he wanted a
trial, only to have Trump veer into attacks on Democrats.
'Assuming these people are as sleazy as they are, Nancy Pelosi is totally
incompetent,' Trump said.
'So you want a trial?' Kilmeade asked. 'If they do put it, because theyre
crazy, Adam Schiff is a nut job,' Trump said.
Co-host Steve Doocey asked Trump if he wanted to call Hunter Biden as a witness,
in reference to Vice President Joe Biden's son, who got a lucrative job on the
board of Ukrainian energy company Burisma.
'Theres only one person I want than wheres Hunter and that is Adam Schiff. I
want to put that guy, with his ah with his way,' Trump said, chuckling. 'I
almost said something that might have been slightly controversial. See Im
learning. See Steve, Im learning,' Trump said, without explaining what he
'I want to see Adam Schiff testify about the whistle-blower whos a fake
whistle-blower it bore no relationship it said there were seven or eight quid
pro quos, there were none,' he said.
'The whistle-blower, in my opinion is a political operative.'
Republicans want to push Schiff on contact his staff had with the whistle-blower
before and after his report was filed, although Schiff during a hearing this
week denied knowing the whistle-blower's identity.
'I want the whistleblower who put in a false report to testify,' said Trump, who
also went off on response the inspector general for the Intelligence Community,
who provided information to Congress.
'The one I want to testify most is Shifty Schiff. And I want to find out, why
did he make up my statement. He made up my statement,' Trump said. 'Hes a
He was referencing Schiff's statement at a public hearing where he paraphrased
Trump's call after a transcript had been released in terms Trump said made it
Asked if there is anything Democrats could impeach him for, Trump responded:
'There's nothing there.'
He called the speaker 'crazy Nancy' and said she's 'crazy as a bedbug.'
Democrats said during the hearings that Trump's conduct amounted to bribery, and
also have said they may bring an impeachment article dealing with obstruction
due to the administraiton not making witnesses or documents available.
A group of senior Republican lawmakers huddled with White House counsel Pat
Cippolone Thursday to try to game out strategy, as national security official
Fiona Hill delivered more damaging testimony in a House impeachment inquiry.
Senators attending a White House meeting told the administration there aren't
currently the sufficient 51 votes for an immediate motion to dismiss whatever
impeachment articles the House may send over.
'The President has made no decisions on trial strategy, but has engaged his
senior team with senate Republicans to solicit their thoughts and feedback on
various strategies and tactics,' White House legislative affairs director Eric
Ueland told DailyMail.com, without venturing into specifics.