Kushner says calling witnesses would 'just take more time'

Kushner says calling witnesses would 'just take more time'
© Getty Images

White House senior adviser Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerLincoln Project ad dubs Jared Kushner the 'Secretary of Failure' Deutsche Bank launches investigation into longtime banker of Trump, Kushner Watchdog group accuses Stephen Miller of violating Hatch Act with Biden comments MORE on Wednesday urged senators to bypass witnesses in President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoe Arpaio loses bid for his old position as sheriff Trump brushes off view that Russia denigrating Biden: 'Nobody's been tougher on Russia than I have' Trump tees up executive orders on economy but won't sign yet MORE's impeachment trial out of concern the process would drag on indefinitely.

"I think it would be unfortunate because it’s just going to take more time,” Kushner said in an appearance on "Fox & Friends." "The American people don’t want Congress focusing on this hoax that they’ve been putting on."

He suggested that if witnesses like former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonEx-Trump adviser, impeachment witness Fiona Hill gets book deal Hannity's first book in 10 years debuts at No. 1 on Amazon Congress has a shot at correcting Trump's central mistake on cybersecurity MORE are called to testify, it should mean Republican witnesses should also be called in. He cited Joe BidenJoe BidenDemocratic convention lineup to include Ocasio-Cortez, Clinton, Warren: reports Whitmer met with Biden days before VP announcement: report Maxine Waters says Biden 'can't go home without a Black woman being VP' MORE and his son Hunter Biden, as well as the anonymous whistleblower whose complaint triggered the impeachment inquiry as possible examples.

ADVERTISEMENT

"There’s a lot of dirty things that have been happening for a long time, and a witness phase will give the American people the opportunity to learn about that," Kushner said.

Many Republican senators have signaled support for skipping witnesses and new evidence and moving straight to a vote on whether to convict or acquit Trump. But the debate has been scrambled by reports about Bolton's forthcoming book.

The New York Times reported Sunday that Bolton wrote in the manuscript of his upcoming memoir, "The Room Where It Happened," that Trump said during an August meeting that he wanted to continue a freeze on the nearly $400 million in security aid for Ukraine until the government there agreed to investigate the Bidens and other political opponents.

Trump has denied he tied aid for Ukraine to investigations, but the allegation has given new life to Democrats' case to call Bolton. But Republicans have warned that if Bolton is called, they will also subpoena witnesses seen as favorable to their case.

Four Republicans would need to vote with all Democratic and Independent senators in order to subpoena witnesses. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellCoronavirus talks collapse as negotiators fail to reach deal Pelosi, Schumer say White House declined T coronavirus deal COVID-19 bill limiting liability would strike the wrong balance MORE (R-Ky.) indicated late Tuesday he did not yet have the votes yet to block witnesses.

Kushner said Wednesday he has not seen the manuscript, which was submitted to the National Security Council a month ago to be reviewed for classified information.

"I have not seen the book. I don't know what's in it," Kushner said. "What I can say right now is the whole impeachment charade is just a big distraction."