Graham wants Senate panel to probe State Department over Bidens


 
 
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Risch— in a letter to Sen. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezTrump encounters GOP resistance to investigating Hunter Biden Fairness, tradition, and the Constitution demand the 'whistleblower' step forward Isolationism creeps back over America, as the president looks out for himself 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 John TrumpTrump faces high stakes in meeting with Erdoğan amid impeachment drama Democrats worry they don't have right candidate to beat Trump Trump threatening to fire Mulvaney: report 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 GiulianiGiuliani pens op-ed slamming 'unprecedented' impeachment inquiry Giuliani associate Lev Parnas discussed Ukraine with Trump at private dinner: report Democrats face make-or-break moment on impeachment 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 BurrGOP chairman says Senate impeachment trial could last 6-8 weeks Bottom Line GOP senator wants to know whistleblower identity if there's an impeachment trial MORE (R-N.C.).

Updated: 3:36 p.m.