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Democrat met with laughter after suggesting Trump testify before impeachment committee

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 11/13/2019 Madison Dibble
Peter Welch wearing a suit and tie: Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., questions top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine William Taylor, and career Foreign Service officer George Kent, at the House Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019, during the first public impeachment hearing of President Donald Trump's efforts to tie U.S. aid for Ukraine to investigations of his political opponents. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) © (Susan Walsh/AP) Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., questions top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine William Taylor, and career Foreign Service officer George Kent, at the House Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019, during the first public impeachment hearing of President Donald Trump's efforts to tie U.S. aid for Ukraine to investigations of his political opponents. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Democratic Rep. Peter Welch invited President Trump to testify before Congress, prompting laughter from the House Intelligence Committee hearing room.

During the impeachment hearings on Wednesday, Welch wished that Trump was before him to testify instead of Ambassador William Taylor and George Kent, the deputy assistant secretary for European and Eurasian affairs.

Republicans were critical of both Kent and Taylor in that neither had first-hand knowledge of Trump’s conversations with Ukrainian leaders. Welch countered the complaints from Republicans by inviting Trump to testify before the committee to give his first-hand testimony.

“I say to my colleague, I’d be glad to have the person who started it all come in and testify. President Trump is welcome to take a seat right there,” Welch said, prompting giggles throughout the room.

Welch noted that Trump is allowed to fire ambassadors and go after Joe Biden and his son, but he cannot do so in a way that could hurt the United States.

“To my colleagues, if the president wants to attack Joe Biden and his son, he’s free to do it. All fair and square in campaigns. He’s just not free to change our foreign policy unless he gets his way to a system in that campaign,” Welch said. “That’s the line he can’t cross.”

Republican Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan grilled Taylor on his distance from the original phone call, saying, “I have seen church prayer chains that are easier to understand.”

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