White House releases memo about Ukraine call
by Harvest Prude
Posted 9/25/19, 12:41 pm
WASHINGTON—President Donald Trump repeatedly asked Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky to work with his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and Attorney General William Barr, according to a memo about a July 25 phone call the White House released Wednesday. The memo is not a verbatim transcript. The phone call became a central component of a whistleblower’s complaint that led House Democrats to launch an impeachment inquiry on Tuesday against Trump. Democrats accuse the president of trying to curry personal political favors from Ukraine’s president by temporarily withholding nearly $400 million in aid to the country. Other than saying the United States had been “very, very good to Ukraine,” Trump never specifically brought up aid on the call or suggested he would withhold it if Zelensky didn’t do what he asked.
What do the notes reveal? They confirm Trump asked Zelensky to do him a “favor” and cooperate with Barr’s investigation into the origins of the Russia probe. He referenced CrowdStrike, a U.S. cybersecurity company that first connected the hack of the Democratic National Committee with Russia. Trump also asked Zelensky to look into actions by Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. While vice president, Biden pressured Ukraine to dismiss the country’s prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, for corruption. Biden denied he acted to shield his son, who sat on the board of a company Shokin was investigating.
Dig deeper: Read Onize Ohikere’s report on Zelensky’s election in April. Before becoming president, his only political experience was playing a president on TV.
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Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.