News

White House

Volker Testifies He Was Unaware of ‘Any Linkage’ Between Delayed Military Aid to Ukraine and Biden Investigation

Former U.S. special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker testifies before a House Intelligence Committee hearing as part of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill, November 19, 1019. (Loren Elliott/Reuters)

Former U.S. special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker testified to Congress on Tuesday that he was unaware of “any linkage” between the Trump administration’s hold on U.S. military aid to Ukraine and an investigation into former vice president Joe Biden.

“No one had ever said that to me — and I never conveyed such a linkage to the Ukrainians,” Volker told the House Intelligence Committee.

Volker emphasized that he was “not in the loop” as far as the administration’s alleged efforts to convince Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to publicly announce investigation into the Bidens as a condition for military assistance, saying that “at no time” did he know that the administration wanted to investigate Biden.

“I did not know about the strong concerns expressed by then-national security adviser John Bolton to members of his NSC staff regarding the discussion of investigations,” Volker said in his opening statement.

Volker also dismissed as a “conspiracy theory” Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s suggestion that Biden leveraged his position as vice president to benefit from his son’s lucrative position at a Ukrainian gas company.

“At the one in-person meeting I had with Mayor Giuliani on July 19, Mayor Giuliani raised, and I rejected, the conspiracy theory that Vice President Biden would have been influenced in his duties as vice president by money paid to his son,” Volker said in his opening statement.

“As I testified previously, I have known Vice President Biden for 24 years. He is an honorable man and I hold him in the highest regard,” Volker added. “It’s just not credible to me that a vice president of the United States is going to do anything other than act as how he sees best for the national interest.”

Volker originally flatly denied in closed-door testimony last month that the topic of investigations did not come up in a July 10 White House meeting with Ukrainian officials. However, he amended his public testimony to state that he now remembers U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland making “a generic comment about investigations,” that “all of us thought was inappropriate.”

Volker’s testimony comes on the second day of a week packed with impeachment hearings, which will include testimony from Sondland himself on Thursday.

Send a tip to the news team at NR.

Most Popular

Why Trump’s Losing

President Trump pulled an inside straight to win in 2016, and now he needs another one. The good news for Trump is that his approval rating has stopped falling recently. The bad news is that it has stabilized in the low 40s. Election-watcher Harry Enten points out that no president since Harry Truman has won ... Read More

Why Trump’s Losing

President Trump pulled an inside straight to win in 2016, and now he needs another one. The good news for Trump is that his approval rating has stopped falling recently. The bad news is that it has stabilized in the low 40s. Election-watcher Harry Enten points out that no president since Harry Truman has won ... Read More
U.S.

A Stay-at-Home Mom on Her Reasons for Leaving Portland

While covering events (see here and here) in Portland, Ore., National Review writer Luther Abel sat down with Joanna -- a college-educated, stay-at-home mom and now Trump voter -- who feels it is no longer safe or healthy to live there. They discussed the change that has happened in the city politically, the ... Read More
U.S.

A Stay-at-Home Mom on Her Reasons for Leaving Portland

While covering events (see here and here) in Portland, Ore., National Review writer Luther Abel sat down with Joanna -- a college-educated, stay-at-home mom and now Trump voter -- who feels it is no longer safe or healthy to live there. They discussed the change that has happened in the city politically, the ... Read More
Law & the Courts

New York’s Lawless NRA Lawsuit

The latest bananas news from the banana republic that is the State of New York: The attorney general, a political enemy of the National Rifle Association, is seeking to have the advocacy organization legally dissolved. The pretext is financial corruption and self-dealing on the part of the NRA’s ... Read More
Law & the Courts

New York’s Lawless NRA Lawsuit

The latest bananas news from the banana republic that is the State of New York: The attorney general, a political enemy of the National Rifle Association, is seeking to have the advocacy organization legally dissolved. The pretext is financial corruption and self-dealing on the part of the NRA’s ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Government Misconduct Frees Cliven Bundy

Politically charged prosecutions — even ones that are thoroughly justified — often end badly for the justice system. So it appears with the federal prosecutions of Cliven Bundy and his sons. The government blew its case against Bundy's sons by overcharging them, resulting in a jury acquittal in 2016. Today, ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Government Misconduct Frees Cliven Bundy

Politically charged prosecutions — even ones that are thoroughly justified — often end badly for the justice system. So it appears with the federal prosecutions of Cliven Bundy and his sons. The government blew its case against Bundy's sons by overcharging them, resulting in a jury acquittal in 2016. Today, ... Read More
Politics & Policy

What Next?

Imagine this: You have a friend who has never saved a penny for his retirement. You ask him about it when he is in his twenties, and he says, “No problem — I’m going to win the lottery.” Years go by. You ask him about it in his thirties, in his forties, in his fifties, etc., and get the same answer. At ... Read More
Politics & Policy

What Next?

Imagine this: You have a friend who has never saved a penny for his retirement. You ask him about it when he is in his twenties, and he says, “No problem — I’m going to win the lottery.” Years go by. You ask him about it in his thirties, in his forties, in his fifties, etc., and get the same answer. At ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Year of Resentment

Political journalists, commentators, pundits, and flacks often engage in their work in a year like this with a world-weary, if not depressed, attitude. And given the oddly low metabolism of our presidential campaign, who could blame them? Donald Trump isn’t able to do the rallies that energized him and his ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Year of Resentment

Political journalists, commentators, pundits, and flacks often engage in their work in a year like this with a world-weary, if not depressed, attitude. And given the oddly low metabolism of our presidential campaign, who could blame them? Donald Trump isn’t able to do the rallies that energized him and his ... Read More