Lawmakers turn attention to potential witnesses at Judiciary impeachment hearings

Republicans and Democrats appearing on the Sunday morning political shows offered differing takes on who should testify during the next phase of the House's impeachment inquiry as it shifts from the House Intelligence Committee to the Judiciary Committee.

Rep. Tom McClintockThomas (Tom) Milller McClintockJudiciary Republican asks impeachment witnesses if they voted for Trump Live coverage: Witnesses say Trump committed impeachable offenses This week: Impeachment inquiry moves to Judiciary Committee MORE (R-Calif.), a member of the Judiciary Committee, told ABC’s “This Week” that it would be to President TrumpDonald John TrumpLawmakers prep ahead of impeachment hearing Democrats gear up for high-stakes Judiciary hearing Warren says she made almost M from legal work over past three decades MORE’s advantage to have an attorney representing him present at the hearing this week.

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"That's his right, but I can also understand how he is upset at the illegitimate process that we saw unfolding in the Intelligence Committee," McClintock said, adding that he also believed witnesses the White House has ordered not to appear, including acting chief of staff Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyDemocrats gear up for high-stakes Judiciary hearing Gaetz defends Ukraine call: Trump acted on 'sincere' concerns of corruption Judiciary Democrat says House should focus on Ukraine, avoid Mueller report in articles of impeachment MORE and former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonDemocrats gear up for high-stakes Judiciary hearing Kim Jong Un cannot afford to fail again The shifting impeachment positions of Jonathan Turley MORE, could work to Trump’s advantage.

“Of course, he has to weigh that against the enormous, catastrophic damage that would do to the doctrine of executive privilege,” he added.

Rep. Val DemingsValdez (Val) Venita DemingsPelosi faces tough choices on impeachment managers Impeachment inquiry enters critical new phase Lawmakers turn attention to potential witnesses at Judiciary impeachment hearings MORE (D-Fla.) said she held out hope Trump would participate in the hearings.

“I think our main focus right now is to have the president and his counsel, who you know are given the same privileges as President Nixon and President Clinton had to participate and engage in this impeachment process,” Demings, a member of both committees, said on “This Week.”

Lawmakers announced last week that the Judiciary Committee would hold its first hearing Wednesday based on the report compiled by the Intelligence Committee, which wrapped up two weeks of public hearings in the impeachment inquiry. Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerLawmakers prep ahead of impeachment hearing Trump: Fox News 'panders' to Democrats by having on liberal guests Democrats express confidence in case as impeachment speeds forward MORE (D-N.Y.) in a letter on Friday told Trump he has until Dec. 6 to let the committee know whether his counsel will participate in upcoming impeachment proceedings. 

Judiciary Committee ranking member Doug CollinsDouglas (Doug) Allen CollinsLawmakers prep ahead of impeachment hearing Top Republican: Democrats' weekend document dump shows impeachment inquiry is a 'farce' Trump, GOP shift focus from alleged surveillance abuse to Durham Russia probe MORE (R-Ga.), meanwhile, said Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffLawmakers prep ahead of impeachment hearing Top Republican: Democrats' weekend document dump shows impeachment inquiry is a 'farce' Nunes: 'Sickening' that Schiff obtained his phone records MORE (D-Calif.) was chief among the witnesses Republicans would like to call during the next phase of the inquiry.

“My first and foremost witness is Adam Schiff,” Collins said on “Fox News Sunday,” adding, "If he chooses not to [testify], then I really have to question his veracity in what he’s putting in his report.”

Lawmakers were also pressed on public support for impeachment.

House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem JeffriesHakeem Sekou JeffriesLive coverage: Witnesses say Trump committed impeachable offenses Pelosi faces tough choices on impeachment managers Lawmakers turn attention to potential witnesses at Judiciary impeachment hearings MORE (D-N.Y.), a Judiciary Committee member, dismissed a poll showing declining support for impeachment, pointing to other polling indicating continued majority support as well as 70 percent of Americans believing Trump did something wrong.

“Our job is to follow the facts, apply the law, be guided by the U.S. Constitution and present the truth to the American people no matter where it leads because no one is above the law,” Jeffries told Fox’s Chris WallaceChristopher (Chris) WallaceTrump: Fox News 'panders' to Democrats by having on liberal guests Judiciary Democrat: 'This is a classic example of an impeachable offense' Pentagon chief says he's ordered review of foreign nationals exchange programs after Pensacola shooting MORE. “That’s what we have been doing. That’s what we are doing. That’s what we’re going to continue to do moving forward.”

Rep. Zoe LofgrenZoe Ellen LofgrenDemocrats express confidence in case as impeachment speeds forward Sunday shows — Nadler: A jury would convict Trump in 'three minutes flat' Judiciary Democrat says House should focus on Ukraine, avoid Mueller report in articles of impeachment MORE (Calif.), the only House Democrat to have also worked on impeachment proceedings for former Presidents Nixon and Clinton, said the allegations against Trump are worse than the allegations against Nixon.

“President Nixon's misconduct related to trying to use the levers of government to hide the Watergate burglary. His misconduct had to do with trying to throw the election, but at least it didn't involve involving other foreign nations,” Lofgren said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“If you take a look at what the Founding Fathers were concerned about, it was the interference by foreign governments in our political system that was one of the gravest concerns. Nixon's behavior didn't fall into that range. So, in that way, this conduct is more serious,” she added.