Manchin says Hunter Biden is a 'relevant witness' in impeachment trial

Democratic Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinPelosi says House members would not vote on spending bill topline higher than Senate's To reduce poverty, stop burdening the poor: What Joe Manchin gets wrong about the child tax credit Overnight Health Care — Presented by Indivior —Pfizer: COVID-19 vaccine safe for young kids MORE (W.Va.) said Wednesday morning he believes Hunter Biden, the son of former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHouse clears bill to provide veterans with cost-of-living adjustment On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default To reduce poverty, stop burdening the poor: What Joe Manchin gets wrong about the child tax credit MORE, is a “relevant witness” in the Senate’s impeachment trial.

“I think so, I really do. I don’t have a problem there because this is why we are where we are,” Manchin said when asked on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” if Hunter Biden is a relevant witness. 

“Now I think he can clear himself, what I know and what I’ve heard, but being afraid to put anyone that might have pertinent information is wrong, no matter if you’re a Democrat or a Republican.” 

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The Bidens have been a focus for the GOP throughout the impeachment fight, with some Republicans claiming the former vice president abused his power when he pushed for the ouster of a Ukrainian prosecutor who was accused of corruption and had investigated Burisma Holdings, an energy company that counted Hunter Biden among its board members.

Officials who testified in the House’s impeachment investigation said Joe Biden was acting on behalf of official U.S. foreign policy in pushing for the dismissal and that the prosecutor’s investigation of Burisma was reportedly long dormant before he was pushed out from his position in Kyiv. No evidence has emerged to suggest either Biden committed any wrongdoing in Ukraine.

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The House in December voted to approve two articles of impeachment against President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE over his pressure campaign to get Kyiv to investigate his political rivals, including the Bidens. The president has often cited Hunter Biden’s work in Ukraine as evidence of supposed wrongdoing. 

While some of Trump’s GOP allies in the Senate have called for both Bidens to testify should witnesses be approved later this week, Democrats have largely said subpoenaing the two would steer the trial away from its intended focus.

Manchin remains a swing vote on whether he will support convicting Trump, thus far declining to reveal how he intends to vote.