Senate Judiciary Committee chair Lindsey Graham pledged on Monday to launch an investigation into the Ukraine whistleblower at the center of Democrats’ impeachment case against President Donald Trump once the Senate votes on Wednesday.
In addition to probing the whistleblower, who is believed to be a CIA employee, Graham pledged to investigate Hunter Biden, son of the former Vice President, over his ties to a Ukrainian energy company that is also linked to the impeachment allegations.
“I want to understand how all this crap started,” he told Fox Business Network’s“Sunday Morning Futures.”
Graham, a South Carolina Republican, said his GOP colleague and head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Richard Burr of North Carolina, has also expressed an interest in questioning the whistleblower.
The comments come as the House impeachment managers finish their closing arguments Monday, followed by the president’s legal team. The Senate is expected to vote on Wednesday to acquit the president of both impeachment articles after deciding against hearing from additional witnesses.
The House called 18 witnesses during its impeachment inquiry last fall, and Republicans said they believe that was enough.
The impeachment inquiry began last fall following an anonymous whistleblower complaint to the Intelligence Community Inspector General’s office about a July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The whistleblower claimed that Trump improperly demanded that Zelensky to look into allegations of corruption surrounding the Hunter Biden and his father, 2020 Democratic candidate Joe Biden, at the risk of losing U.S. military aid.
The whistleblower’s identity has not been released.
The White House released a transcript of that phone call, and while Trump mentioned that Zelensky “might” want to look into allegations of corruption involving the Bidens, as well as Ukrainian and Democratic interference in the 2016 election, he never threatened to withhold military aid.
The aid was temporarily withheld, but Ukrainian officials were unaware of it. Also, they did not launch a probe into the Bidens or the 2016 Democrat allegations.
Republicans considering the evidence provided by the Democrat House managers noted that the two articles of impeachment did not contain any violations of law, as proscribed by the Constitution’s “high crimes and misdemeanors” standard.