On Monday, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), runner-up for the 2016 Republican Party presidential nomination and a widely respected national conservative movement leader, remained defiant amidst the much-ballyhooed Sunday evening New York Times report about former National Security Advisor John Bolton’s allegedly explosive forthcoming tell-all book — and the possible effects of that book on Democrats’ current partisan impeachment inquiry.
“Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said Monday that ‘additional witnesses are not necessary’ for the ongoing impeachment trial — even in light of revelations from President Trump’s former national security advisor John Bolton in a leaked manuscript of an upcoming book that claims Trump explicitly linked a hold on military aid for Ukraine to an investigation of Joe and Hunter Biden — and instead insisted that the Senate call Hunter Biden to testify,” Fox News reported.
“Look in my view, additional witnesses are not necessary,” Cruz said, according to the outlet. “The House managers have presented their case. They haven’t come remotely close to meeting their burden of proof. Now that being said, if the Senate later this week when we vote, decides to go down that road to additional witnesses, I think at a minimum, the most important witness for the Senate to hear from, is now Hunter Biden. … In the entire proceeding, we have heard just the beginning of the serious evidence of corruption involving Burisma, the Ukrainian natural gas company that paid Hunter Biden, Joe Biden’s son, a million dollars a year.”
“I get that the press loves to obsess over the latest [Bolton] bombshell,” Cruz continued, as reported by Fox News. “Listen, I don’t know what John Bolton’s book says or doesn’t say. I’ve seen the New York Times coverage but at the end of the day, it doesn’t impact the legal issue before this Senate. The legal issue before this Senate is whether a president has the authority to investigate corruption. So the House managers built their entire case on the proposition that investigating Burisma corruption, investigating the Bidens for corruption, was baseless and a sham. The proposition is absurd.”
Today, on the U.S. Senate floor, prominent Trump impeachment defense attorney Jay Sekulow similarly argued that any testimony from Bolton should properly be considered “inadmissible.”
“You can’t impeach the president on an unsourced allegation,” Sekulow said, as reported by National Review. “That was what was said in response to an unpublished manuscript, that maybe some reporters have an idea of, maybe, what it says. If you want to call that evidence, I don’t know what you’d call that. I’d call it inadmissible. But that’s what it is.”
“Presidents must be able to candidly consult with their advisers without worrying they will leak these discussions to the press or obtain high-dollar book contracts to publish them,” Fleitz wrote. “A book by a former national security advisor ahead of a president’s reelection bid may set a dangerous precedent since it could discourage future presidents from seeking advice from expert advisers on sensitive national security matters.”