(UnitedVoice.com) – On Sunday, the New York Times released a bombshell article that could throw a wrench into President Trump’s impeachment hearing. Anonymous sources claimed that former National Security Adviser John Bolton was told by Trump that aid would be withheld from Ukraine until it investigated former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden on suspicions of corruption.
The Times used part of a leaked manuscript from Bolton’s book titled, “The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir” that is expected to be placed on bookstore shelves in March. The report of what Trump told Bolton is not being refuted by Bolton’s camp. They refused to “speculate” on Monday morning as to how the Times got the manuscript.
According to the leaked transcript, Trump told Bolton in August that he “wanted to continue freezing $391 million in security assistance to Ukraine until officials there helped with investigations into Democrats including the Bidens.”
If Bolton’s claim is true, it could undercut Trump’s impeachment defense.
Democrats have been calling for witnesses in the Senate’s impeachment trial and this new revelation may persuade enough Republicans to hear what Bolton has to say. Senators may vote as early as this week to seek testimony from former and current officials in the Trump administration. Bolton has said he will testify if subpoenaed by Congress.
Democrats only need four Republican Senators to vote for a motion to call witnesses as, thus far, their efforts for new evidence to enter into the record have been resisted.
Bolton’s Team Alleges the Government Review was “Corrupted”
A statement released by Bolton’s attorney, Charles Cooper, said on December 30th a printed manuscript of Bolton’s book “was provided to the National Security Council’s Records Management Division.” Cooper further stated, “It is clear, regrettably, from The New York Times article published today that the prepublication review process has been corrupted and that information has been disclosed by persons other than those properly involved in reviewing the manuscript.”
Monday morning on Twitter, Trump reminded the public that he released the transcript call with President Zelensky and that the Ukrainians said they never felt any pressure from the United States. Furthermore, he said that aid was released and that the weapons the United States provided Ukraine were far above the Obama Administration.
Trump denies that he ever spoke with Bolton about aid to Ukraine or the Bidens.
I NEVER told John Bolton that the aid to Ukraine was tied to investigations into Democrats, including the Bidens. In fact, he never complained about this at the time of his very public termination. If John Bolton said this, it was only to sell a book. With that being said, the…
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 27, 2020
At a press conference last week in Davos, Switzerland, Trump said he opposes Bolton testifying in the Senate.
“The problem with John [Bolton] is, it’s a national security problem. If you think about it, he knows some of my thoughts, he knows what I think about leaders. What happens if he reveals what I think about a certain leader and it’s not very positive? … It’s going to be very hard, it’s going to make the job very hard. He knows other things. I don’t know if we left on the best of terms. I would say probably not. So you don’t like people testifying when they didn’t leave on good terms — and that was due to me, not due to him. The way I look at it, I call it national security. For national security reasons. Executive privilege, they say.”
We will have to wait and see if this new development will sway enough Republican senators to want to hear from witnesses. As always, we’ll keep you updated.
By Don Purdum, Freelance Contributor
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