2020 White House hopeful U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii complained Thursday about the lack of transparency playing out in the impeachment process against the president.
“I don’t know what’s going on in those closed doors,” Gabbard said during an appearance on “Hannity.” “We as members of Congress do not have access to the information that’s being shared. I think the American people deserve to know exactly what the facts are, what the evidence is being presented as this inquiry goes on.”
Gabbard, who supports the impeachment inquiry, also doubled-down on the idea that the inquiry is divisive and reiterated her call for Democrats to proceed with caution.
“I’ve long expressed my concern about going through impeachment proceedings in a very, very partisan way because it will only further tear apart an already divided country,” Gabbard said.
Gabbard made headlines for breaking with Democrats on stage last week at the fourth Democratic debate in Ohio, warning Democrats not to move too aggressively on the divisive measure.
“If impeachment is driven by these hyper-partisan interests, it will only further divide an already terribly divided country,” Gabbard said during the primetime event. “If the House votes to impeach, the Senate does not vote to remove Donald Trump, he walks out and he feels exonerated, further deepening the divides in this country that we cannot afford.”
The congresswoman made sure not to downplay the call, however, on which the ongoing inquiry is based between President Donald Trump and the president of Ukraine. Even so, contrary to what the Democrats and the media have portrayed, the quickly released call transcript reveals no incriminating evidence against the president.
“The serious issues that have been raised around this phone call that he had with the president of Ukraine and many other things that transpired around that are what caused me to support the inquiry in the House,” Gabbard said.
The impeachment investigation currently underway in the House lead by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff of California has been cloaked in secrecy, with witnesses testifying in closed-door sessions to only select members of Congress. A majority of members have no access to the private hearings and are denied access to transcripts of witness testimony. Members unable to participate only have access to testimony being carefully leaked to the press.
Gabbard’s Thursday comments on “Hannity” come as the congresswoman made national headlines this week after former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton characterized Gabbard as a Russian asset during a podcast interview. Gabbard shot back at Clinton, branding the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee as the “Queen of the warmongerers.”
“You, the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long, have finally come out from behind the curtain,” Gabbard wrote on Twitter. “From the day I announced my candidacy, there has been a concerted campaign to destroy my reputation. We wondered who was behind it and why. Now we know — it was always you.”
… concerted campaign to destroy my reputation. We wondered who was behind it and why. Now we know — it was always you, through your proxies and …
— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) October 18, 2019
The Hawaii congresswoman declared Friday morning in a video posted on Twitter that she would not be seeking re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives next year and would instead focus on winning the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.
I'm so grateful to the people of Hawaiʻi for allowing me to serve you in Congress for the last 7 years. Throughout my life, I’ve always made my decisions based on where I felt I could do the most good. In light of the challenges we face, I believe I can… https://t.co/cNcjSNSoZl pic.twitter.com/h3wM6AZLMs
— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) October 25, 2019