Pelosi says Trump's Ukraine actions amount to 'bribery'

Суббота, 23 Ноя, 2019

At the heart of the Democrats' case against Trump is the contention that he abused his power - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi likened his actions to "bribery" - in seeking a foreign investigation of a domestic political rival and pressing his demand by withholding security assistance to that country.

Democrats are looking into whether the Republican president abused his power by withholding $391 million in U.S. security aid to Ukraine as leverage to pressure Kyiv to conduct two investigations that would benefit him politically. Republicans dismiss that as not credible.

Yovanovitch was strongly committed to United States foreign policy objectives in Ukraine and outspoken in highlighting corruption there, according to numerous former officials. Or disloyal to a president fully empowered to choose his own ambassadors?

The inquiry threatens Trump's presidency even as he seeks re-election in November 2020.

Pelosi also called this week's first House impeachment hearing a "successful day for truth".

Days of public hearings will stretch into next week.

In an emotional testimony, Ms. Yovanovitch described how she was "shocked and devastated" that a smear campaign against her by Ukrainian officials who were attempting to thwart USA anti-corruption policy had found a willing partner in Mr. Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. "You should ask him", Prystaiko said about Sondland, the US ambassador to the European Union.

White House budget official Mark Sandy will testify in the inquiry in a closed session on Saturday as scheduled if he is subpoenaed, his lawyer said on Thursday. Taylor testified he repeatedly asked Sondland to get Trump to back off forcing Ukraine's president from making a statement that he was investigating a company linked to the Bidens.

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Yovanovitch was abruptly recalled as ambassador in May in a move she has described to three House investigative committees as politically motivated and based on false accusations. "It was not we, the Ukrainian officials (who were told this)", Prystaiko told the journalists in Kyiv on Thursday.

During the private deposition last month, Yovanovitch grew emotional and asked for a break, according to the transcript.

Mr Taylor and Mr Kent, the deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, expressed concern that USA security aid was withheld from Ukraine as leverage to get Kiev to carry out the investigations.

Although some State Department officials have said they objected to what they saw happening, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo agreed to end Yovanovitch's tenure early and spurned requests to defend her in public, witnesses have said.

Hosting the president of Turkey at the White House, Trump insisted he was too busy to watch the hearings being broadcast live across the country and the world.

It is not known whether Sondland's phone was encrypted at the time of the call.

It became clear, he said, "President Trump wanted her gone". Revealing the whistleblower's name would undercut the protections established to root out government corruption.

The phone call that was made on July 26, was revealed by Bill Taylor, the top USA diplomat in Ukraine, during his public testimony on Wednesday. "She's going to go through some things".

"Why a president is talking to an ambassador on a non-encrypted telephone is insane for today's age, and worse in public", said Todd Carroll, a former Federal Bureau of Investigation official. But the president has a long history of denigrating women who stand up to him, especially those of his generation in positions of power. He told ABC News and the BBC I'm against corruption. "It's been very unfair, very hard on my family". To help keep track of who thinks it's okay for Trump to demand personal favors from foreign leaders and who's already copped to the quid pro quo in Ukraine, Intelligencer is providing a daily rundown of the hearings' most important characters. Quid pro quo - bribery. "Bribery" is specifically spelled out as a potential ground for presidential impeachment. If this is not impeachable conduct, what is?

Democrats announced there will be eight more witnesses questioned in public hearings next week. Democrats immediately condemned Mr. Trump's tirade as witness tampering, raising the possibility that they might add that charge to the list of offences that they may use to build an impeachment case against the President.

Trump continued to assail the proceedings as "a hoax" on Thursday. "White House called Taylor's closed-door testimony 'triple hearsay'".

The president's re-election campaign says Americans are increasingly behind that defense.