GOP senator plans to ask about Bidens, whistleblower in impeachment trial

Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyRepublicans fear backlash over Trump's threatened veto on Confederate names McConnell: Trump shouldn't veto defense bill over renaming Confederate bases Trump warns of defense bill veto over military base renaming amendment MORE (R-Mo.) is planning to use his questions during President TrumpDonald John TrumpSecret Service members who helped organize Pence Arizona trip test positive for COVID-19: report Trump administration planning pandemic office at the State Department: report Iran releases photo of damaged nuclear fuel production site: report MORE’s impeachment trial to ask about a slew of top GOP targets and Trump opponents.

Hawley, who released his questions on Tuesday, will ask about House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffDemocrats hit Trump for handling of Russian bounty allegations after White House briefing Voters must strongly reject the president's abuses by voting him out this November Democrats face tough questions with Bolton MORE (D-Calif.), the Bidens and the whistleblower at the heart of the impeachment effort. 

Senators will begin asking questions, through Chief Justice John Roberts, for 16 hours, starting Wednesday at 1 p.m., after Trump's defense team wrapped up their opening arguments on Tuesday.


Hawley, according to his released list, plans to ask about any communication between Schiff and the whistleblower.

The whistleblower reached out to the House Intelligence Committee with concerns about Trump’s behavior toward Ukraine. Democrats argue that whistleblowers routinely reach out to Congress's Intelligence committees; Schiff’s spokesman has said the chairman did not know the details or the name of the whistleblower.

Hawley is also planning to use his questions to get details on Hunter Biden and Burisma. Biden has emerged as a top target for Republicans because of his work for the Ukrainian gas company while his father was vice president. 

Republicans have also seized on Joe BidenJoe BidenThe Hill's Campaign Report: Biden chips away at Trump's fundraising advantage The Memo: Trump grows weak as clock ticks down Nina Turner addresses Biden's search for a running mate MORE's push for the dismissal of Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin because of concerns he was overlooking corruption in his own office. The removal reportedly came while Shokin was investigating Burisma.

“Before Vice President Joe Biden sought to remove Shokin, did the White House Counsel’s Office or the Office of the Vice President legal counsel issue ethics advice approving Mr. Biden’s involvement in matters involving Shokin, despite the presence of Hunter Biden on the Burisma board?” Hawley will ask. 


There's no evidence that Biden was acting with his son's interests in mind when he pushed for Shokin's dismissal, a position that reflected the views of the Obama administration and U.S. allies in Europe. The former vice president has denied doing so and the GOP claims have been debunked by fact checkers.

It’s unclear if Hawley’s planned questions will actually be asked during the Senate trial.

Republicans are submitting their questions to leadership, which is expected to organize them by topic and try to cull duplicate questions.