Graham wants Senate panel to probe State Department over Bidens

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSenators preview bill to stop tech giants from prioritizing their own products Democrats fret as longshot candidates pull money, attention Tim Scott takes in .3 million in third quarter MORE (R-S.C.) is calling for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to probe ties between the Bidens and Ukraine, including calling State Department officials. 

"We need to look at whether or not Hunter Biden corruptly engaged in lobbying. Did Joe BidenJoe BidenPressure grows for breakthrough in Biden agenda talks State school board leaves national association saying they called parents domestic terrorists Sunday shows preview: Supply chain crisis threaten holiday sales; uncertainty over whether US can sustain nationwide downward trend in COVID-19 cases MORE ask the prosecutor to be fired because he was investigating his son?" Graham asked during an interview on Monday with Fox News's Laura IngrahamLaura Anne Ingraham90 percent of full-time Fox Corp. employees say they're fully vaccinated: executive Texas lt. governor faces backlash after claiming unvaccinated African Americans responsible for COVID-19 surge Fox News requires employees to provide vaccination status MORE
 
 
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Risch— in a letter to Sen. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezDemocrats weigh changes to drug pricing measure to win over moderates Advocates frustrated by shrinking legal migration under Biden Rand Paul blocks quick vote on House-passed B Iron Dome funding MORE (N.J.), the top Democrat on the Foreign Relations panel—said that he would wait until after the House impeachment inquiry wraps up before digging into delays in Ukraine assistance and a July 25 call at the center of the impeachment inquiry. 
 
"I believe it would be more appropriate for our committee to wait on examining these matters until after the House completes its process (one way or another)," Risch wrote in the letter, which is dated Oct. 29, but was obtained by The Hill on Tuesday.
 
"At the appropriate time, we will look into these matters in greater detail in consultation with the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence," Risch added.
 
President TrumpDonald TrumpMcAuliffe takes tougher stance on Democrats in Washington Democrats troll Trump over Virginia governor's race Tom Glavine, Ric Flair, Doug Flutie to join Trump for Herschel Walker event MORE and his allies have latched onto Biden’s connection to Ukraine as the former vice president seeks the Democratic nomination to challenge Trump in 2020.
 
Joe Biden pushed in 2016 for the dismissal of a Ukrainian prosecutor who had been accused of overlooking corruption in his own office. There’s no indication Joe Biden was acting with his son’s interests in mind, and the former vice president has denied doing so.
 
A State Department official told House investigators last month that he raised concerns with a senior official at the White House in 2015 about Hunter Biden serving on the board of a Ukrainian national gas company because it could be viewed as a potential conflict of interest. 
 
Graham, a vocal ally of Trump's, had previously pledged that he would use the Senate Judiciary Committee to help investigate Ukraine, including inviting Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiBook Trump signed for Giuliani fetches K at auction: 'I promise never to run against you' Judge: Request for Tucker Carlson personnel files is 'intrusive' White House orders release of Trump records to Jan. 6 committee MORE, Trump's personal lawyer, to testify before the panel. 
 
But Graham told reporters last month that he hadn't gotten a final answer from Giuliani and signaled that he was backing down and letting the Senate Intelligence Committee take the lead. 
 
"What I'm trying to do now, quite frankly, is just calm things now. Let the Senate Intel Committee — they were given this task not me, you know those two guys have worked pretty well together — let the Senate do its thing," Graham said
 
The Senate Intelligence Committee is currently reviewing the process behind a whistleblower complaint tied to Trump's actions toward Ukraine. The same complaint has helped drive the House impeachment inquiry, which is investigating if Trump tied Ukraine aid to the country opening an investigation into the Bidens. 
 
Risch indicated to The Wall Street Journal that he would not call State Department officials who had been interviewed as part of the House probe. 

“You would have to talk to Sen. Burr about that,” he told the publication, referring to Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrDemocratic incumbents bolster fundraising advantage in key Senate races McConnell gets GOP wake-up call Senate approves short-term debt ceiling increase MORE (R-N.C.).

Updated: 3:36 p.m.