Representative Will Hurd (R., Texas), a frequent Republican critic of President Trump, on Thursday condemned the Trump administration’s foreign policy in Ukraine but said he has seen no evidence Trump committed bribery or extortion.
“An impeachable offense should be compelling,” Hurd said during Thursday’s impeachment hearing before the House Intelligence Committee. “It’s not something to be rushed or taken lightly. I have not heard evidence proving the president committed bribery or extortion.”
Hurd particularly called out Trump’s use of the phrase “do us a favor” and his mention of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden during his controversial July 25 phone call with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, which is at the heart of the impeachment inquiry.
“I believe both statements were inappropriate, misguided foreign policy, and it certainly is not how an executive currently or in the future should handle such a call,” Hurd said during the hearing.
Hurd slammed the administration’s “misguided foreign policy” toward Ukraine, but said he would like to hear testimony from Biden’s son, Hunter, whose lucrative position at a Ukrainian gas company Trump asked Ukraine to investigate.
The administration’s foreign policy in Ukraine “undermined our national security and undercut Ukraine, a key partner on the front lines against Russian aggression,” he said. He added that he “rejects” the notion that withholding his support for impeachment is equivalent to “supporting all of the foreign policy choices we have been hearing about over these last few weeks.”
Hurd, the only African-American Republican in the House, announced in August that he will not run for reelection next year, complicating the GOP’s hopes of holding on to his competitive San Antonio-area district.