Diplomat says of Trump Ukraine call: ‘I remember it vividly'
Added 11-19-19 02:22:02am EST - “The phone call State Department official David Holmes overheard between President Donald Trump and Ambassador Gordon Sondland lasted just two minutes. But it won't be easily forgotten.” - Washingtontimes.com
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WASHINGTON (AP) - The phone call State Department official David Holmes overheard between President Donald Trump and Ambassador Gordon Sondland lasted just two minutes. But it won’t be easily forgotten.
“I’ve never seen anything like this,” Holmes told Trump impeachment investigators, “someone calling the President from a mobile phone at a restaurant, and then having a conversation of this level of candor, colorful language. There’s just so much about the call that was so remarkable that I remember it vividly.”
Holmes’ first-hand account of the conversation heard over lunch in Kyiv provides a key piece of the impeachment inquiry. He is among the only witnesses testifying so far to show Trump personally seeking investigations into Democrats and his potential 2020 rival Joe Biden that are central to the probe.
A transcript of Holmes’ closed-door testimony was released Monday. Holmes, a political counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine, is scheduled to testify publicly Thursday.
The conversation between the president and the ambassador came one day after the July 25 call when Trump asked Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy for a favor with the investigations. At the time, the Trump administration was withholding $391 million in military aid to the ally in what Democrats say amounts to “bribery.” Trump says he did nothing wrong. A whistleblower’s complaint about it led the House to launch the impeachment inquiry.
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