Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham said Sunday that anonymous whistleblowers would be front and center for Senate hearings if House Democrats pursue articles of impeachment against President Trump.
A second whistleblower with first-hand information of the president’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has reportedly spoken to the Inspector General, attorney Mark Zaid, who represents both whistleblowers, told media outlets.
The first complaint accused Mr. Trump of pressuring Ukraine to investigate corruption allegations related to former Vice President Joseph R. Biden’s involvement in his son Hunter Biden’s business dealings in the Ukraine.
“Here’s what’s going to happen: If the whistleblower’s allegations are turned into an impeachment article, it’s imperative that the whistleblower be interviewed in public, under oath, and cross-examined,” Mr. Graham told Fox’s Maria Bartiromo on “Sunday Morning Futures.”
He added that “if that doesn’t happen in the House, I will make sure it happens in the Senate.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi opened an impeachment inquiry last month following a complaint by the first whistleblower, which alleges Mr. Trump leveraged military aid in exchange for an investigation into former Vice President Joseph R. Biden’s involvement in his son Hunter Biden’s business dealings in the Ukraine.
A transcript released by the White House shows Mr. Trump making no reference to withholding military aid, while texts released Friday by House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff show the top U.S. diplomat in the Ukraine complaining about a perceived quid pro quo.
“I think it’s crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign,” said U.S. charge d’affaires William Taylor in a Sept. 9 text to U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland.
Mr. Sondland replied that, “Bill, I believe you are incorrect about President Trump’s intentions. The President has been crystal clear no quid pro quo’s of any kind.”
Mr. Graham cited the president’s right under the Sixth Amendment to confront his accusers.
“Nobody in America goes to jail or has anything done to them without confronting their accuser,” Mr. Graham said.
He also said that Mr. Schiff has “made himself a witness” after the whistleblower reportedly went to his committee before filing the Aug. 12 complaint.
“Schiff has made himself a witness,” Mr. Graham said. “If he did in fact interview the whistleblower before the complaint was filed, then he becomes a witness. I want to know what was said originally.”
Mr. Zaid told media outlets that a second intelligence official has spoken to the Inspector General, and that this person has “first-hand knowledge of some of the allegations outlined in the original complaint,” according to ABC News.