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Biden Says He Won't Comply With Senate Subpoena

Candidate argues his testimony would just be a diversion that the news media would fall for
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2019 8:00 AM CST

(Newser) – "The grounds for them to call me would be overwhelmingly specious," Joe Biden said in detailing why he wouldn't honor a Senate subpoena to testify in President Trump's impeachment trial. Summoning him would just be a diversion, Biden told the Des Moines Register editorial board Friday. "The reason I wouldn't is because it's all designed to deal with Trump doing what he's done his whole life: trying to take the focus off him," Biden said. "The issue is not what I did." The Democratic presidential candidate had told NPR earlier this month that he wouldn't comply. He said Friday that he wouldn't appear voluntarily, either. "What are you going to cover?" Biden said to the Register's editor. "You guys are going to cover for three weeks anything that I said. And (Trump’s) going to get away. You guys buy into it all the time."

The articles of impeachment approved by the House accuse Trump of abuse of power in trying to get Ukraine to announce an investigation of Biden and his son, Hunter. With Biden on the stand, Republicans could make Trump's baseless accusations against the Bidens part of the trial, per the New York Times. "We will have Schiff, the Bidens, Pelosi and many more testify, and will reveal, for the first time, how corrupt our system really is," Trump tweeted early this month. Republicans would need 51 votes to subpoena Biden, and it's not clear that they have enough. (Read more Joe Biden 2020 stories.)

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