Mitt Romney asked Trump’s lawyer when did Trump first request the hold on Ukraine, and what was his reason why? Trump’s defense had no answer.
Romney asked, “On what specific date did Trump first order the hold on aid to Ukraine, and did he give a reason at that time?”
This was Trump lawyer, Patrick Philbin’s response in part:
I don’t think that there is evidence in the record of a specific date, the specific date, but there is testimony in the record that individuals at OMB and elsewhere were aware of a hold as of July 3rd and there is evidence in the record of the president’s rationales from even earlier than that time.
There is an email from June 24th that has been publicly released. It was publicly released in response to a FOIA request that is from one dod staffer up to the chief of staff in DOD — excuse me, sorry, from the chief of staff down to a staffer in DOD, relating on the subject line, “POTUS follow-up.” It’s follow-up from a meeting with POTUS, president of the United States, explaining questions that had been asked about the Ukraine assistance, which were specifically, what was the funding used for? I.e. did it go to U.S. Firms? Who funded it? And what do other Nato members spend to support Ukraine? So, from the very beginning in June, the president had expressed his concern about burden sharing, what other NATO members do.
Mitt Romney asks, "On what specific date did Trump first order the hold on aid to Ukraine, and did he give a reason at that time?" Trump's lawyer responds by falling apart. pic.twitter.com/hg3c6eZ2Hc
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) January 30, 2020
Trump’s lawyers don’t have answers for the most basic questions, and Philbin’s response made the argument for calling more witnesses. Mick Mulvaney could answer the question on when the hold was requested, and even better, the White House has the documented paper trail on when and why the hold was requested.
The Senators’ questions have illustrated why documents and witnesses must be subpoenaed. Trump is hiding information that the American people must have on the Ukraine scandal.
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Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association