With round two of the public impeachment hearings set to begin this week, President Trump said in a Monday morning tweet that he would consider testifying—in writing—for the inquiry as to whether he abused his power when he witheld military aid to Ukraine unless they launched an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter.
The president was responding to a suggestion from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who, in an interview on Face the Nation on Sunday, said the president was free to “come right before the committee and talk, speak all the truth that he wants if he wants.”
Which led President Twitter Fingers to say this Monday morning:
withholding key documents sought by House Democrats, while also blocking White House officials from testifying before the House Intelligence Committee, which is running the impeachment probe.
As the Washington Post reports, Democrats are “skeptical” about Trump submitting answers for the inquiry:
Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) said in a tweet that the president should testify and allow the testimony of other officials, claiming Trump was engaged in an “illegal coverup.”
“He should allow Rick Perry and John Bolton and Rudy Giuliani to testify,” Beyer tweeted, referring to the energy secretary, former national security adviser and the president’s personal lawyer. “He should turn over the documents Congress subpoenaed. He should end his illegal coverup. I’m not holding my breath.”
Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) also expressed doubt that Trump would come through with testimony.
“I’m sure we can expect this testimony along with your plan to provide coverage for preexisting conditions, your gun violence legislation, and your tax returns, all of which you promised would be coming ‘soon,’” she wrote on Twitter.
Of course, the president will say anything to distract from the upcoming public hearings beginning on Tuesday, where Democrats will be questioning witnesses who will be able to more closely connect Trump to the demand that Ukraine launch an investigation into the Bidens.
As CBS News notes:
From Tuesday to Thursday, the committee plans to hear the accounts of eight witnesses appearing in five separate hearings. The witnesses include several figures with direct knowledge of the administration’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to pursue investigations that would benefit Mr. Trump politically.
Among those scheduled to appear is Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the E.U. Sondland was involved in the campaign to pressure Ukraine and testified behind closed doors to the committees leading the probe in October. Earlier this month, Sondland revised that testimony to admit he had told a senior aide to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. military aid was “likely” contingent on announcing the investigations.
Whether Trump testifies—in writing or otherwise—the impeachment train will keep on rolling and there ain’t nothing he can say or do to knock it off track.