House Committees Launch Investigation Into WaPo Report That Trump Took Advantage of Ukraine

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Posted: Sep 09, 2019 1:25 PM
House Committees Launch Investigation Into WaPo Report That Trump Took Advantage of Ukraine

Source: AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

House Democrats are giving credence to a recent Washington Post editorial that suspects President Trump and his lawyer Rudy Giuliani of trying to pressure Ukraine to support his re-election efforts. In the piece, the editors praise new Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for his pro-reform agenda, and wondered why Trump was not warming up to him.

"Not only has Mr. Trump refused to grant the Ukrainian leader a White House visit, but also he has suspended the delivery of $250 million in U.S. military aid to a country still fighting Russian aggression in its eastern provinces," the editors write.

They then answer their own question.

Some suspect Mr. Trump is once again catering to Mr. Putin, who is dedicated to undermining Ukrainian democracy and independence. But we’re reliably told that the president has a second and more venal agenda: He is attempting to force Mr. Zelensky to intervene in the 2020 U.S. presidential election by launching an investigation of the leading Democratic candidate, Joe Biden. Mr. Trump is not just soliciting Ukraine’s help with his presidential campaign; he is using U.S. military aid the country desperately needs in an attempt to extort it.

Giuliani was reportedly one of the biggest instigators, pressuring Ukraine to investigate both Biden and his son Hunter for their connection to a Ukrainian gas company. He's tweeted publicly about the scandal in the past few months.

After seeing the WaPo op-ed, three Democratic House chairmen, Eliot L. Engel of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Adam B. Schiff of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and Eli Cummings of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, announced on Monday that they're launching investigations into the controversy.

“A growing public record indicates that, for nearly two years, the President and his personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, appear to have acted outside legitimate law enforcement and diplomatic channels to coerce the Ukrainian government into pursuing two politically-motivated investigations under the guise of anti-corruption activity,” they wrote. “As the 2020 election draws closer, President Trump and his personal attorney appear to have increased pressure on the Ukrainian government and its justice system in service of President Trump’s reelection campaign, and the White House and the State Department may be abetting this scheme.”

The president has yet to respond to the Democrats' new probe, but we'll be refreshing Twitter!