Donald Trump DID hold up military aid to Ukraine to force investigation, says White House, but to force an investigation into ‘DNC server’ not the Bidens – and he DID order officials to work with Rudy Giuliani
- Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney said President Trump spoke to him about ‘corruption on the DNC server’
- He acknowledged ‘that’s why we held up the money’ designated for Ukraine
- Ukraine was awaiting $390 million of mostly security aid as it fends off Russia
- Mulvaney also confirmed that the president ordered top officials to work with his private lawyer Rudy Giuliani on Ukraine
Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney acknowledged that he held up $390 million in security aide for Ukraine in order to pressure the country into pursuing a 2016 election probe being demanded by President Trump.
Trump and top administration officials have vigorously denied any ‘quid pro quo’ with Ukraine following a whistleblower’s report that the White House was demanding a probe of the Bidens as well as Trump’s conspiracy theory that the DNC server might be in Ukraine’s possession.
In a rare White House briefing, Mulvaney denied any knowledge of a company linked to Hunter Biden – but said the money was in fact dangled to push what he called anti- ‘corruption’ efforts by Ukraine.
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‘The look back to what happened in 2016 certainly was part of the thing that [Trump] was worried about in corruption with that nation. And that is absolutely appropriate,’ said Mulvaney, confirming that the president ordered $390 million in Ukraine held up over the probe of the U.S. elections
He said of President Trump: ‘Did he also mention to me in [passing] that the corruption that related to the DNC server? Absolutely, no question about that. But that’s it. And that’s why we held up the money.’
Mulvaney confirmed what Trump also said in a July phone call with the president of Ukraine: that he wanted an investigation related to the hacked Democratic National Committee Server. U.S. intelligence, the Mueller probe, and bipartisan congressional committees concluded that the Russians hacked Democratic servers. But Trump wants to explore an unproven theory that the Democratic server might be in Ukraine, where information came out that implicated his now jailed 2016 campaign manager Paul Manafort.
‘The look back to what happened in 2016 certainly was part of the thing that [Trump] was worried about in corruption with that nation. And that is absolutely appropriate,’ said Mulvaney.
Mulvaney said President Trump wanted Ukraine to take pursue 2016 ‘corruption’ and said the matter was directly linked to U.S. aide appropriated by Congress
Asked again if that was why the funding got held up, Mulvaney said: ‘Yeah.’ Then he noted that it ‘ultimately flowed’ as required by the law and Congress.
Mulvaney also confirmed that the president ordered top officials to work with his private lawyer Rudy Giuliani on Ukraine.
Mulvaney called linking the funds to the president’s search for a Democratic server ‘absolutely appropriate’
Democratic emails on the DNC server, as well as those belonging to Hillary Clinton chief of staff John Podesta were hacked during the 2016 elections. The Mueller report concluded the hacking was directed by the Kremlin
Trump raised the issue personally in a phone call with President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky
Trump told Energy Secretary Rick Perry to work with his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani on Ukraine, Perry said
‘There was a May meeting and I think this is widely reported. [EU ambassador Gordon] Sondland mentioned it in his testimony and I’m pretty sure Rick Perry mentioned it yesterday … that in the May meeting in the Oval Office, that I was in, I think Senator [Ron] Johnson was there as well as Mr. [Kurt] Volker was there, the president asked Rick Perry to work with Mr. Giuliani,’ he said.
Asked if he thought that was appropriate, he replied: ‘I wasn’t asked.’
‘And the answer to your question is that the president told Rick Perry, who I think was sort of, you know — the issue — one of the reasons we were in there, we were talking about energy and Ukraine as an energy partner. We were trying to get Ukraine as an energy partner. And so the president said to Mr. perry, go ahead and talk to Rudy’ he said.
Giuliani, a vocal TV defender of the president during the Mueller probe, has been reported to be under a counterintelligence investigation dating back months related to his overseas work.
Two Giuliani associates were arrested this month and charged with campaign finance violations stemming from their efforts to cultivate politicians. Prosecutors allege they gave a contribution of more than $300,000 to a pro-Trump super PAC when the funds were actually financed by another source.
Mulvaney’s statements were the latest to shed light on the multi-pronged effort to try to get Ukraine to take actions that a whistle-blower said were to promote President Trump’s 2020 reelection.
U.S. ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sonland, was testifying behind closed doors Thursday about his personal phone interactions with Trump, who instructed him to work with Giuliani.