Former vice president Joe Biden said on Wednesday that he would not voluntarily testify in the impeachment hearings against President Trump.
“No, I’m not going to let them take their eye off the ball,” Biden told reporters. “The president is the one who has committed impeachable crimes. I’m not going to let him diverge from that. I’m not going to let anyone diverge from that.”
Democrats launched the impeachment inquiry due to suspicions that Trump withheld military aid from Ukraine to pressure the country to investigate corruption allegations involving Joe Biden.
Trump and his allies allege that the former vice president had a conflict of interest while handling Ukraine policy during his term in office. Biden urged Ukraine to fire a prosecutor, who was widely viewed as corrupt. That prosecutor had previously investigated the natural gas company Burisma Holdings, whose board included Biden’s son Hunter.
“I think the President has basically impeached himself,” Joe Biden said on Wednesday. “He has indicted himself by his own words.”
In November, congressional Republicans called for Hunter Biden to testify in the impeachment probe.
“Every single, solitary, serious investigator… looked at this and said there’s absolutely zero basis to the accusation that I acted inappropriately or that my son did,” Joe Biden said at a town hall meeting in Iowa shortly after Republicans’ comments. “This is all about Trump trying to create a diversion… There’s not a scintilla of evidence pointing out that anything is wrong.
Biden is currently the leader in national polls of Democratic primary voters. However, he is polling in fourth place in the first two state primaries of Iowa and New Hampshire, and is in the midst of an aggressive campaign schedule to try to win over Iowa voters.