Two days before the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, a question on whether witnesses will be called to testify remains unresolved. Perhaps the most talked-out potential witness is former Vice President Joe Biden's son Hunter.
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) told CNN on Sunday that he would be "fine" with hearing from Hunter Biden, who had received a high-paying board position on Ukrainian energy firm Burisma Holdings while his father was in office. Republicans have said Biden's seat on the board raises questions because he doesn't speak Ukrainian and has no experience in the industry.
“Fine. We take the position that we want to hear from witnesses. I don’t know what Hunter Biden has to do with the phone call that was made,” he said on “State of the Union.”
Brown was referring to the July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, during which Trump asked his counterpart to "look into" circumstances surrounding potential corruption involving the Bidens and Burisma Holdings.
“I’m fine with hearing—I mean, I’m not a lawyer. I understand both sides get to call witnesses," he added. “I think many Republicans think that’s a distraction," he continued.
Another Democrat, Rep. Maxine Waters (Calif.), said she isn't opposed to GOP senators calling either Hunter or Joe Biden.
Last year, amid the impeachment inquiry, the younger Biden defended his work in Ukraine but admitted that it could have been perceived as a conflict of interest.
Democrats and Republicans clash over whether to allow witnesses to be interviewed in the Senate as part of the trial. On the Democratic side, lawmakers have sought to obtain testimony from White House acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and former national security adviser John Bolton, who had signaled that he would testify if he were subpoenaed. Hunter Biden, Joe Biden, and the whistleblower at the center of the inquiry have been potential witnesses sought by Republicans.
On Sunday, Republicans in the Senate echoed the calls for Biden to take the stand.