President Trump announced on Tuesday that he has authorized the release of the transcript of a phone conversation between himself and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
“I…have authorized the release tomorrow of the complete, fully declassified and unredacted transcript of my phone conversation with President Zelensky of Ukraine,” Trump wrote in a Tweet, adding, “You will see it was a very friendly and totally appropriate call. No pressure and, unlike Joe Biden and his son, NO quid pro quo!”
….You will see it was a very friendly and totally appropriate call. No pressure and, unlike Joe Biden and his son, NO quid pro quo! This is nothing more than a continuation of the Greatest and most Destructive Witch Hunt of all time!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 24, 2019
Trump was referring to a July phone call in which he urged Zeletsky to investigate presidential candidate Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, and the latter’s ties to a Ukrainian natural gas company.
Hunter Biden joined the board of the company, Burisma Holdings, in early 2014. Soon afterwards Joe Biden was placed at the head of U.S. Ukraine policy.
In February and March of 2014 Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula. Russian separatists have been fighting the Ukrainian military in the east of the country ever since.
Over a week before the phone call, Trump withheld a $391 million military aid package from Ukraine, ostensibly due to concerns of corruption among Ukrainian government authorities. The aid was eventually released.
The timing of Trump’s order to withhold aid and the content of his phone call have sparked calls by Democrats to impeach the President over possible use of his office to pressure a foreign leader to investigate a political rival.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is set to make an announcement on whether she will support impeachment procedures this evening.