Democrats outline impeachment hearing guidelines in memo

On the eve of convening historic impeachment hearings aimed at President Donald Trump, House Democrats publicly set out guidelines for conduct by lawmakers in the proceedings, seemingly anticipating the possibility of procedural tussles with GOP lawmakers when the hearings begin on Wednesday.

In a six page memo released by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Schiff directly warned Republicans not to try to use the hearings to veer into certain areas of interest for the GOP.

Schiff wrote, "it is important to underscore that the House’s impeachment inquiry, and the Committee, will not serve as venues for any Member to further the same sham investigations into the Bidens or into debunked conspiracies about 2016 U.S. election interference."

In his memo, Schiff said the questions should stick to three main areas of inquiry:

The Schiff memo also indicated Democrats are still reviewing the requests of GOP lawmakers to call certain witnesses in the hearings.

Republicans asked for a series of witnesses on Saturday, headlined by the son of Vice President Biden, Hunter Biden, and the Intelligence Community whistleblower whose complaint kicked off the Ukraine investigation earlier this fall.

As for the whistleblower, the Schiff memo warned GOP lawmakers not to make any efforts to use the public hearings to reveal the name of the whistleblower, raising the specter that it could lead to ethics charges.

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