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Democratic 2020 U.S. presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden speaks at the seventh Democratic 2020 presidential debate at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, U.S., January 14, 2020. Photo by Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

Biden says Trump impeachment trial outcome is ‘irrelevant’ to his campaign

Joe Biden says the outcome of a Senate impeachment trial against President Donald Trump won’t affect his arguments against the Republican president in the 2020 campaign.

And the former vice president said at Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential debate that it’s “irrelevant” whether Trump claims exoneration if the Republican-led Senate votes as expected and doesn’t remove him from office.

Biden said House Democrats had “no choice” but to impeach the president for Trump’s efforts to pressure Ukrainian officials to launch investigations into Biden’s son Hunter’s business dealings in the country and his own foreign policy engagement in Ukraine when he was vice president.

Trump’s claims about the Bidens have been debunked. But Biden said he expects Trump and Republicans to continue to allege that the Bidens are corrupt.

“I did my job,” Biden said at the debate.

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar said the upcoming Senate trial on President Donald Trump’s impeachment “is a decency check on our government.”

“This is a patriotism check,” she added at Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential debate, noting the upcoming 2020 election is yet another check.

Klobuchar and her fellow senators running for president will have to contend with the impeachment trial as the push to the Iowa caucuses enters its final days. Other candidates like Biden and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg will be able to continue campaigning freely as the Senate trial gets underway.

Klobuchar also criticized her Senate Republican colleagues over reluctance to allow certain witnesses for the Senate trial, saying, “We’ve asked for only four people.”

“And if our Republican colleagues won’t allow those witnesses, they may as well give the president a crown and a scepter. They may as well make him king,” Klobuchar said.

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