Biden Says If He Gave Impeachment Testimony, It Would Only ‘Take the Focus Off’ Trump’s Wrongdoings

Biden Says If He Gave Impeachment Testimony, It Would Only ‘Take the Focus Off’ Trump’s Wrongdoings

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden reiterated that he would not comply with a Senate subpoena to testify in President Trump’s upcoming impeachment trial. In an interview Friday with the Des Moines Register‘s editorial board, Biden confirmed what he had first said in early December.

If he were to appear, the former vice president explained, that would only distract from Trump’s impeachable behavior because the media would be obligated to cover it.

“What are you going to cover?” Biden said to Register Executive Editor Carol Hunter. “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. Not a joke … Think what it’s about. It’s all about what he does all the time, his entire career: take the focus off. This guy violated the Constitution. He said it in the driveway of the White House. He acknowledged he asked for help.”

Biden added that not even “that thug” Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer, has accused him of doing anything wrong.

Several Republicans have floated the idea of issuing a subpoena to Biden, but Biden predicted that if this did indeed happen, it would be on “specious” grounds.

In a series of tweets Saturday morning, Biden wrote that he is “not going to pretend that there is any legal basis for Republican subpoenas” for his testimony.

The impeachment trial will be about the president’s conduct, Biden added, not his own.

William Vaillancourt

William Vaillancourt

William Vaillancourt is a writer and editor from New Hampshire whose work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The Progressive, Slate and Areo Magazine, among other places. He holds a BA in Political Science and History from Boston University.