Former Vice President Joe Biden announced his support for the impeachment inquiry against President Trump for the first time on Wednesday, saying in a speech that Mr. Trump had already indicted and convicted himself, and he has committed "impeachable acts."
"With his words and his actions, President Trump has indicted himself," Biden said in a speech in New Hampshire Wednesday. "By obstructing justice, refusing to comply with a congressional inquiry, he's already convicted himself in full view of the world and the American people."
He continued, "Donald Trump has betrayed his oath of office, betrayed this nation, and committed impeachable acts," a line that was greeted with applause. "To preserve our Constitution, our democracy, our basic integrity, he should be impeached."
He pointed to Mr. Trump's attempts to urge Ukraine and China to investigate Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, who sat on the board of a Ukrainian natural gas company while his father was vice president.
President Trump responded to Biden with a tweet: "So pathetic to see Sleepy Joe Biden, who with his son, Hunter, and to the detriment of the American Taxpayer, has ripped off at least two countries for millions of dollars, calling for my impeachment - and I did nothing wrong. Joe's Failing Campaign gave him no other choice!"
Mr. Trump also tweeted a controversial 30 second campaign video attacking Biden. Facebook has rejected the Biden campaign's request to remove the ad on the grounds that it contains false information, saying that the company does not fact check politicians. CNN has refused to air the ad.
The impeachment inquiry was spurred by a whistleblower complaint about Mr. Trump's July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, when he requested Zelensky to investigate Biden's role in pushing out former Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin. Mr. Trump has promoted the conspiracy theory that Biden wanted Shokin ousted because Shokin was investigating a gas firm with ties to Hunter Biden. However, there is no evidence to support this theory.
Mr. Trump also called on China to investigate the Bidens while speaking to reporters last week.
Bo Erickson contributed to this report