A little over one month has passed since the White House released the record of President Donald Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Americans read for themselves how President Zelensky sought more weapons critical to Ukraine’s defense, and how President Trump responded: “I would like you to do us a favor though” and laid bare his abuse of the power of the presidency.
From the call record alone, we have stark evidence that President Trump sought Ukraine’s help in the 2020 election by pressing that country to investigate a political opponent. Ukraine, which lies on the front line of Russian aggression, is financially, militarily and diplomatically dependent on the United States. The president’s corrupt pressure to secure its interference in our election betrayed our national security and his oath of office.
On Sept. 24, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced an impeachment inquiry and tasked the Intelligence, Foreign Affairs, and Oversight and Reform Committees to ascertain the extent of the president’s misconduct. In the past few weeks, and despite the White House’s continued obstruction, we have learned a great deal about what occurred from those with firsthand knowledge of the call, and those who witnessed the president’s actions preceding and following it.
What we have found, and what the American people will soon learn through the release of additional testimony transcripts and in public hearings, is that this is about more than just one call. From closed door interviews of current and former administration officials, text messages we have obtained, and public admissions by acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and President Trump himself, we now know that the call was just one piece of a larger operation to redirect our foreign policy to benefit Donald Trump’s personal and political interests, not the national interest. [Continue reading…]