Graham defends call to investigate Bidens: 'My conscience is clear'

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGOP sees debt ceiling as its leverage against Biden DACA court ruling puts weight of immigration reform on Democrats Senate braces for a nasty debt ceiling fight MORE (R-S.C.) doubled down on his call to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden’s involvement in a Ukrainian energy company, saying the U.S. is not going to be a country where only "Donald Trump and his family gets" investigated.

“My conscience is clear. I love Joe Biden as a person, he is a really decent man, he's had a lot of tragedy in his life, but I have a conscience very clear right now. And I have a duty, if the House is going to shut it down the Senate is going to pick it up,” Graham said Monday speaking to reporters in Charleston, S.C., about the possible probe.

Graham is pushing for an investigation into Hunter Biden’s connection with the Ukrainian company Burisma Holdings. He is asking for the former vice president to release his calls with the former Ukrainian president as part of the investigation. 

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“I’m not saying Joe did anything wrong, but I want to see the transcripts, and if there's nothing there I’ll be the first one to say there’s nothing there,” Graham said. 

“I believe that Hunter Biden’s association on that board doesn’t pass the smell test. If a Republican was in the same boat they would be eaten alive by the media,” Graham added.  

 

Graham said “we’re not going to live in a country where only one party gets investigated” and only “Donald Trump and his family gets looked at.” 

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Biden has fiercely defended his and his son’s actions in association with Ukraine. Other Democrats seeking the Democratic presidential nomination in the primary alongside Biden have come to the vice president’s defense over the issue. 

Biden has maintained that his position was to “root out corruption in Ukraine” and that he was conducting transparent policy. A spokesperson for the Biden campaign wasn’t immediately available for comment in response to Graham’s Monday remarks. 

Former U.S. special envoy to Ukraine Kurt VolkerKurt VolkerCNN obtains audio of 2019 Giuliani call linked to Ukraine meddling allegations GOP senators request details on Hunter Biden's travel for probe Yovanovitch retires from State Department: reports MORE pushed back on allegations about Biden during his testimony last week. Volker said he “rejected” Trump attorney Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiBob Dole: 'I'm a Trumper' but 'I'm sort of Trumped out' Ex-Trump adviser Barrack charged with secretly lobbying for UAE Aides who clashed with Giuliani intentionally gave him wrong time for Trump debate prep: book MORE’s “conspiracy theory that Vice President BidenJoe BidenTrump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race GOP lawmakers request Cuba meeting with Biden For families, sending money home to Cuba shouldn't be a political football MORE would have been influenced in his duties as vice president by money paid to his son.”

And multiple reports, including fact checks by The Associated Press and The Washington Post, have debunked Trump’s allegations that Biden put any pressure on officials in Ukraine to fire a top prosecutor because he was investigating Burisma, noting that the investigation into Burisma had been stopped by the time Biden came out against the prosecutor. 

But Graham claims that “nobody ... has looked at whether or not Hunter Biden used his political influence to protect the company he was serving on.” 

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“We are not going to have a country that ignores that because everybody in the media hates Trump,” Graham said. 

“I like Joe Biden. All I can say is that Joe didn't pull any punches when he ran against McCain. That’s the way the system works. I like him fine, but we’re not going to have two systems,” Graham added. 

He made similar comments Monday in an interview on Fox News Radio, saying his “friendship with these people” won’t keep him from “asking questions that somebody needs to ask.” 

Graham also railed against the House impeachment probe into President TrumpDonald TrumpCuban embassy in Paris attacked by gasoline bombs Trump Jr. inches past DeSantis as most popular GOP figure in new poll: Axios Trump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race MORE. The senator told reporters in Charleston he supported former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE’s investigation into the president because he “trusted” Mueller — but echoed Trump in depicting the House inquiry as a partisan fight. 

“I do not trust what’s going on in the House of Representatives. I do not trust Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffFive things to watch as Jan. 6 panel begins its work Schiff: Jan. 6 committee mulling subpoenas, testimony from riot participants House erupts in anger over Jan. 6 and Trump's role MORE to be fair to the president,” Graham said, referring to the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.

Witnesses appearing in front of the House in the last couple of weeks testified over allegations that Trump solicited foreign interference in the 2020 presidential election. Democrats allege Trump withheld foreign aid to Ukraine until the country launched an investigation into the Bidens. 

The alleged quid pro quo is at the center of the impeachment inquiry. U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon SondlandGordon SondlandThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Biden to mark Tuesday anniversary of George Floyd's death Trump impeachment witness suing Pompeo, State over legal fees America's practice of 'pay-to-play' ambassadors is no joke MORE testified last week there was a quid pro quo and that it was widely known throughout the administration. 

Trump has denied any wrongdoing or quid pro quo.