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'Months' of White House stalling won't be allowed, Schiff says

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said he

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said he is ready to write a report to the House Judiciary Committee. Credit: AP / Andrew Harnik

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, leader of the impeachment inquiry into President Trump, said Sunday that despite wanting to interview more witnesses and obtain new documents, Congress won't withstand "months and months and months" of stalling from the White House.

Schiff said that his committee will continue to investigate even as he prepares a report to the House Judiciary Committee. No public hearings on impeachment are scheduled the rest of this year, "but we don't foreclose the possibility of others," Schiff told NBC host Chuck Todd Sunday on "Meet the Press."

"We view this as urgent, we have another election in which the president is threatening more foreign interference, but at the same time there are still other witnesses, other documents that we would like to obtain, but we are not willing to go the months and months and months of rope-a-dope in the courts which the administration would more than love for us to do," Schiff said.

"The evidence is already overwhelming," Schiff told host Jake Tapper on CNN's "State of the Union," during a separate televised appearance Sunday morning. "Even as we compile this report, even as we submit evidence to the Judiciary Committee, we are going to continue our investigation. But we are not going to let the administration's stonewalling us stop us."

Schiff also said, "The evidence that's been produced overwhelmingly shows serious misconduct by the president."

With its hearings apparently wrapped, the House Intelligence Committee is preparing a report on its findings that will go to the House Judiciary Committee, which will consider drafting articles of impeachment.

On Thursday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi acknowledged concern that top White House officials had not testified before the committee. 

“They keep taking it to court and no, we’re not going to wait until the courts decide,” she said. “That might be information that’s available to the Senate in terms of how far we go and when we go, but we can’t wait for that because again it’s a technique. It’s obstruction of justice, obstruction of Congress, so we cannot let their further obstruction of Congress be an impediment to our honoring our oath of office.”

At the center of the House impeachment probe is a July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky. Investigators are looking into Trump’s pressure on Ukraine to investigate political rivals as the U.S. withheld nearly $400 million in aid.

White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said on CBS' "Face the Nation" that "we simply can't impeach and remove a democratically elected president from office because you didn't beat 2016. They haven't a clue how to beat him in 2020. They don't much like him."

If the House impeaches and the Senate convenes a trial, "we'll be able to call witnesses, we'll be able to challenge their witnesses, produce other evidence," she said.

She said that the witness list "may include" the U.S. intelligence community whistleblower who first reported concern about the call.

Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley), a prominent defender of Trump, said on CNN's "State of the Union" that the readout from Ukraine after the call contains "no reference to a quid pro quo or a hold on aid."

He said that in subsequent weeks, "the Ukrainians made no reference to a quid pro quo or a hold on aid."

But Defense Department official Laura Cooper testified Wednesday that Ukranian officials had begun asking about the held-up funding on July 25, the day of the phone call.

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