Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said that “Salem witches got a better deal” than President Donald Trump after he reviewed the impeachment inquiry plans laid out by the House Judiciary Committee this week.
Graham, who is the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, blasted the House Democrats’ setup of the inquiry on Twitter after House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) sent a letter to the White House, inviting Trump to attend the hearings on Dec. 4.
Graham, in his tweet, suggested that the process is unfair, noting that the president is being asked to testify after evidence was already presented and collected.
“Jerry Nadler is inviting President Trump to participate in the Judiciary Committee hearings—after all the facts were gathered in [Rep. Adam] Schiff’s Intel Committee—where the president’s team was shut out,” he tweeted. “Salem witches got a better deal than this.”
Let me see if I have this right.
Jerry Nadler is inviting President Trump to participate in the Judiciary Committee hearings — after all the facts were gathered in Schiff’s Intel Committee — where the president’s team was shut out.
Salem witches got a better deal than this!
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) November 27, 2019
He also asked if “Trump’s team [will] be allowed to call witnesses and introduce evidence at the House Judiciary Committee? If not, square this with due process.”
The new round of hearings were announced Tuesday as the third phase of the inquiry. Democrats are investigating whether Trump allegedly abused his office by not releasing aid to Ukraine in exchange for politically advantageous investigations, which Trump and Ukrainian officials have denied.
The president and his Republican allies in Congress protested the first hearings in the House Intelligence Committee, saying Trump was not given the opportunity to defend himself.
On Tuesday, Nadler wrote in the letter (pdf) that the hearing will provide an “opportunity to discuss the historical and constitutional basis of impeachment, as well as the Framers’ intent and understanding of terms like ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’”
“We will also discuss whether your alleged actions warrant the House’s exercising its authority to adopt articles of impeachment,” the letter read.
According to reports, the hearing will also feature legal experts to apply constitutional law to “facts that have been found.”
He hopes that Trump and his counsel can attend the upcoming hearing. The ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee is Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.).
“I have also written to President Trump to remind him that the Committee’s impeachment inquiry rules allow for the President to attend the hearing and for his counsel to question the witness panel,” Nadler wrote. “The Committee looks forward to your participation in the impeachment inquiry as the Committee fulfills its constitutional duties,” the letter also read.
On Wednesday, White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham issued a response.
“The White House is currently reviewing Chairman Nadler’s letter—but what is obvious to every American is that this letter comes at the end of an illegitimate sham partisan process,” she wrote, reported Fox News. “The president has done nothing wrong and the Democrats know it.”