WASHINGTON, Dec. 1 (CGTN) -- The White House said in a letter on Sunday to the chairman of the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee that U.S. President Donald Trump would not send representation to a Wednesday impeachment hearing.

"As for the hearing scheduled for December 4, we cannot fairly be expected to participate in a hearing while the witnesses are yet to be named and while it remains unclear whether the Judiciary Committee will afford the President a fair process through additional hearings," Pat Cipollone, counsel to the president, said in the letter to Democrat Jerrold Nadler.

Cipollone also said in the letter that the White House would respond separately regarding a second hearing by the deadline of Friday.

The first hearing on the impeachment of Trump, announced last week, will feature legal experts who will examine the constitutional grounds for impeachment.

Nadler said that it will "explore the framework put in place to respond to serious allegations of impeachable misconduct."

The absence of White House participation came after the Judiciary Committee, tasked with considering charges known as articles of impeachment, had given the president until 6 p.m. EST (2300 GMT) on Sunday to say whether he or his legal counsel will participate in an impeachment hearing on Wednesday.

Democrats prepared to shift the focus of their impeachment inquiry from fact-finding to the consideration of possible charges of misconduct over Trump's dealings with Ukraine, while the president has denied any wrongdoing and called the impeachment inquiry a witch hunt aimed at unseating a democratically elected president.

Nadler also set a 5 p.m. EST (2200 GMT) deadline on Friday for Trump to say whether he intends to mount a defense at further proceedings expected next week that would examine the evidence against him.

Three investigating panels, led by the House Intelligence Committee, are due to release a formal report this week when lawmakers return on Tuesday from a Thanksgiving recess.