Former DOJ official: 'Terrible idea' for Dems to agree to Hunter Biden testimony

Former DOJ official Ian Prior on Wednesday argued that hearing Hunter Biden’s testimony in the Senate would potentially harm Democrats' impeachment case because though it may not prompt President Trump’s rivals to “talk negatively about it,” it would certainly open a discussion among Joe Biden’s presidential primary competitors.

“[2020 Democratic presidential candidates are] going to be talking to reporters, too, and using this against Biden, which would then serve to take down the frontrunner to a degree,” Prior told “America’s Newsroom,” weighing in on the debate within impeachment proceedings regarding Hunter being a prospect to testify before the Senate.

Prior called it a “terrible idea” for Democrats to agree to hear Hunter's testimony.

DEMOCRATS CLASH WITH REPUBLICANS OVER PROSPECT OF CALLING HUNTER BIDEN IN IMPEACHMENT TRIAL

Prior explained further that Democratic primary candidates speaking negatively on the matter would benefit Trump’s case for prompting Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to launch an investigation into the Biden’s controversial dealings with the Ukrainian natural gas company Burisma Holdings, in which the younger Biden reportedly profited $50,000 per month.

“I think this is a bad idea for the Democrats but I also think on the Republican side, you need to weigh what precedent this would have when you’re waving executive privileges in exchange for witnesses,” Prior said.

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said Wednesday that Trump’s impeachment trial begins under a “cloud of unfairness,” after the GOP-led Senate rejected all 11 of his amendments to allow for witnesses and documents in a marathon late-night session.

In a long, heated session Tuesday, Democrats forced votes 11 times on efforts to obtain documents from the White House and subpoena new witnesses, including former national security adviser John Bolton, in an effort to make the trial “fair.” But Republicans defeated his proposals and passed Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s resolution to start the trial without any promises for new evidence.

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Schumer, however, expressed optimism that McConnell’s original proposal was changed on the fly Tuesday after pressure from his moderate flank to extend the opening arguments from two days to three days for each side  -- avoiding more middle of the night sessions. McConnell, R-Ky., also allowed for the House record to be entered into evidence.

Fox News' Marisa Schultz contributed to this report.