Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden on Wednesday said he was “embarrassed for the institution” of the U.S. Senate after the first day of President Trump’s impeachment trial.
“I was there a long time…and I never saw anything quite like that,” Mr. Biden, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
He said Republican senators are going to regret “holding the line” for President Trump.
“l think it’s one of those things that they’re going to regret when their grandchildren read in the history books what they did,” he said. “I don’t get it.”
He said he thinks a lot of it has to do with potential primary challengers.
“Everybody knows how vindictive the president is. He’s made it real clear,” he said. “This is a guy that I think a lot of people are just afraid of in the Republican party.”
The Senate early Wednesday adopted rules for the impeachment trial after approximately 13 hours of heated arguments.
At one point, Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts had to admonish the conduct of the participants, urging people addressing the Senate to “remember where they are.”
Mr. Biden and his son Hunter Biden are key figures in the impeachment trial.
Mr. Trump stands accused of improperly withholding military aid to Ukraine unless the country’s leaders agreed to announce investigations, including into Hunter Biden’s business ties in the country.
Mr. Biden, the former vice president, had said last month that he would defy a subpoena if called to testify before reversing course.
There has been a debate among lawmakers about whether to call Hunter Biden to testify given his association with some of Mr. Trump’s alleged conduct, though Democrats have cast doubt on whether he would be able to offer relevant testimony.