Steny Hoyer on Impeachment Inquiry: ‘You Wouldn’t Call the Whistleblower’

On Sunday’s broadcast of CBS’s “Face The Nation,” House Majority Leader Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said during the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump there is no need to call the whistleblower to testify.

Partial transcript as follows: 

MARGARET BRENNAN: You just heard from Leader McCarthy that this is just a wholesale rejection of the way Democrats are laying out this impeachment inquiry.

HOYER: Margaret, you know what I say is when lawyers have a statement, that when you have the facts you pound on the facts. When you have the law, you pound on the law. When you neither have the facts nor the law, you pound on the table. What you just heard from my friend, the minority leader, was pounding on the table. With talks about the whistleblower, the whistleblower said, ‘Look, I heard something.’ Then people investigated what he heard and the problem that Kevin has, and the Republicans have, is witness after witness after witness says, ‘Yes, I was there, I listened. Those are the facts.’ That’s what’s critical in any trial. You wouldn’t call the whistleblower. What you call, is the people who were actually there, which is what Adam Schiff has done acting as a investigator. And in the investigations, in both Nixon and Clinton, you had a special prosecutor, they investigated. They investigated confidentially.

BRENNAN: Right.

HOYER: And Republicans said that was the right thing to do. Now–

BRENNAN: So–

HOYER: Now, we passed a resolution says we’re going to move to a public hearing where all the transcripts, all the depositions, are going to be made known to the president and to the members of Congress.

BRENNAN: When do public hearings begin?

HOYER: I think relatively soon.

BRENNAN: What does that mean? It sounds–

HOYER: Well, relative–

BRENNAN: –a lot like what we just heard Speaker Pelosi say–

HOYER: Well, it–

BRENNAN: –which was pretty vague.

HOYER: Well, it was.

BRENNAN: You’ve only got, what–

HOYER: But, why–

BRENNAN: –eight days–

HOYER: Why is it–

BRENNAN: –before Thanksgiving?

HOYER: But- but, no, we have- we have not- time is not constraining us. The truth and the facts are constraining us. We are going to move as soon as the facts and the truth dictate that we have. Which means that when Adam Schiff is determined that he is through what he needs to have, in terms of testimony and Evans, he will then pursuant to the resolution submitted to the Judiciary Committee, and the Judiciary Committee will proceed in a manner given the rights to–

BRENNAN: Right.

HOYER: –the president and to the Republicans that exceed, frankly, the rights that were available to the minority in the Clinton- we were in the minority- and to the Republicans.

BRENNAN: So, all- do you expect all the public hearings to be wrapped up before Thanksgiving? Or is this going to take us well into December?

HOYER: I- I- Margaret, you asked me a question I don’t know the answer to because I don’t know what witnesses are going to come forward, what they’re going to say, what evidence will have to be pursued by knowing the intel committee, but then by the Judiciary Committee which has jurisdiction.

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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