Trump says second Ukraine transcript to be released

Clay Curtis
November 11, 2019

But the request is just the latest in Republicans' attempts to make the hearings a total sham, and to disrupt and deflect from the people's most-serious and solemn business: deciding whether or not to impeach a sitting President of the United States.

Trump himself aggressively squelched the one defense that could ease the political pain of moderate Republican lawmakers.

"Specifically, the investigation has revealed that you "may have been directly involved in an effort orchestrated by President [Donald] Trump, his personal agent Rudolph Giuliani and others to withhold a coveted White House meeting and almost $400 million in security assistance in order to pressure Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky to pursue investigations that would benefit President Trump's personal political interests and jeopardized our national security in attempting to do so", congressional investigators wrote in their letter requesting Mulvaney's testimony".

In response to the GOP's request, Schiff issued a statement saying the Intelligence Committee would evaluate the Republicans' preferred witnesses and "give due consideration" to those "within the scope of the impeachment inquiry, as voted on by the House". They will also seek to confuse the case with details and factually dubious arguments created to complicate it in the eyes of Americans watching the proceedings.

While Vice President Joe Biden was handling global relations with Ukraine on behalf of the Obama administration, his son, Hunter, was being paid $50,000 a month to sit on the board of a Ukrainian gas company, despite having no natural energy experience.

Impeachment would likely pass the Democratic-controlled House. Any trial would take place in the Senate, which is controlled by Trump's Republican Party. Thornberry said. "I don't hear that".

They said Sondland specifically pushed Ukrainian officials in July 10 meetings for a Biden-focused investigation in exchange for a high-profile meeting between Trump and Zelensky.

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"I believe it's inappropriate for a president to ask a foreign leader to investigate a political rival". Trump added, "The Republicans have never been so united and I think the people of our country have never been so united".

Republicans have sought to minimise Trump's role in the campaign to pressure Ukraine, and the list of potential witnesses they released Saturday suggests they will continue to do so. Trump also called on Zelensky to probe a debunked conspiracy theory that Democratic servers hacked during the 2016 election are in Ukraine.

No evidence has surfaced to support either claim, but transcripts from earlier testimony show Republicans pressing witnesses on both counts.

On impeachment, the president tried to give his allies on Capitol Hill some talking points Sunday, tweeting out his advice for how they should defend him - namely by insisting, as he did, that his call with the Ukrainian president was "PERFECT".

Schiff made clear he will use his power as committee chairman to reject them.

More than a dozen witnesses so far appear to have also broadly backed the Democrats' allegations, which include a charge that Trump held up military aid for Ukraine to force it to investigate the Bidens.

Cooper said in a letter to the top lawyer for the House of Representatives on Friday that Bolton and his former deputy, Charles Kupperman, are seeking a "definitive judgment from the Judicial Branch determining their constitutional duty in the face of conflicting demands" from the White House and Congress.

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