President Trump mentions Biden in response to Ukraine call questions

'It was largely the fact that we don't want our people, like Vice President Biden and his son, creating to the corruption already in the Ukraine.'

Posted: Sep 23, 2019 7:04 AM
Updated: Sep 23, 2019 7:36 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump suggested that he raised former Vice President Joe Biden and Biden's son in a summer phone call with Ukraine's new leader, as Democrats pressed for investigations into whether Trump improperly used his office to try to dig up damaging information about a political rival.

Trump told reporters that the July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy was "congratulatory" and focused on corruption in the East European nation. In his remarks to reporters, he then raised Biden as an example, although there is no evidence of wrongdoing by Biden or his son Hunter, who was on the board of a Ukrainian gas company.

"It was largely the fact that we don't want our people, like Vice President Biden and his son, creating to the corruption already in the Ukraine," Trump said as he left the White House for a trip to Texas.

Biden, who is among the front-runners for the Democratic presidential nomination, accused Trump of making a baseless political smear.

The matter has sparked a fierce debate over whether Trump misused his office for political gain and whether his administration is withholding from Congress critical information about his actions. The incident is part of a whistleblower complaint, but the acting director of national intelligence, Joseph Maguire, has refused to share details with lawmakers, citing presidential privilege.

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who has resisted calls for impeachment for other alleged Trump transgressions, said Sunday that unless Maguire provides information to Congress, administration officials "will be entering a grave new chapter of lawlessness which will take us into a whole new stage of investigation."

Another impeachment holdout, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union" that "we may very well have crossed the Rubicon here."

A person familiar with the matter has told The Associated Press that Trump urged Zelenskiy to investigate Hunter Biden. The person wasn't authorized to discuss the issue publicly and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

"Ukraine's got a lot of problems," Trump said at the White House. "The new president is saying that he's going to be able to rid the country of corruption and I said that would be a great thing. We had a great conversation. We had a conversation on many things."

Hunter Biden was hired by the Ukrainian gas company Burisma Holdings in April 2014, two months after Ukraine's Russia-friendly president was ousted by protesters and as his father was heavily involved in U.S. efforts to support the new pro-Western government and its pledge to fight corruption. The hiring of the younger Biden immediately raised concerns that the Ukrainian firm, whose owner was a political ally of the ousted president, was seeking to gain influence with the Obama administration.

Two years later, Joe Biden pressured the Ukrainian government to fire the prosecutor general, who was accused by many in Ukraine and in the West of being soft on corruption. Trump has claimed that the prosecutor, who had led an investigation into Burisma's owner, "was after" Hunter Biden and the vice president was trying to protect his son. There is no evidence of this.

Trump insisted he said "absolutely nothing wrong" in the call to Zelenskiy. He did not answer directly when asked whether he would release a transcript of the conversation to the public.

After arriving in Texas , Trump told reporters he will look into releasing details or a transcript of the call, but stressed that foreign leaders should feel free to speak frankly with an American president without fear that the details of their conversations will later be disclosed. Trump said if Ukraine released its own transcript it would be the same as his version of the call.

Trump and Zelenskiy plan to meet on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly this week.

The Republican president has described the whistleblower as "partisan" but has acknowledged not knowing the identity of the intelligence official who lodged a formal complaint against him with the inspector general for the intelligence community.

The complaint was based on a series of events, including the July 25 call between Trump and Zelenskiy, according to two people familiar with the matter. They were not authorized to discuss the issue by name and were granted anonymity.

Biden said in Iowa on Saturday that "Trump deserves to be investigated" for "trying to intimidate a foreign leader, if that's what happened." Biden said Trump was motivated by politics "because he knows I'll beat him like a drum."

A leading Republican senator urged the Justice Department to investigate the "Biden-Ukraine connection."

"We have looked at all things Russia and Trump, his family, everything about his family, every transaction between the Trump campaign and Russia," Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina told Fox News Channel's "Sunday Morning Futures."

Now is the time, he said, to know "what relationships, if any, did Biden world have to the Ukraine."

Michael Atkinson, the U.S. government's intelligence inspector general, has described the whistleblower's Aug. 12 complaint as "serious" and "urgent," but he has not been allowed to turn over the complaint to Congress.

Maguire, the acting intelligence director, has been subpoenaed by Schiff's committee and is expected to testify publicly on Thursday. Maguire and Atkinson also are expected to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee this week.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 480091

Reported Deaths: 6502
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin995591576
Ramsey42700795
Dakota35723383
Anoka32968383
Washington21824253
Stearns18677200
St. Louis14644262
Scott13104104
Wright12400114
Olmsted1167988
Sherburne864873
Carver755340
Clay682284
Rice664190
Blue Earth585535
Kandiyohi576374
Crow Wing514280
Chisago493344
Otter Tail478770
Benton441090
Winona413548
Mower399231
Douglas390168
Nobles385147
Goodhue382468
Polk340762
McLeod336149
Beltrami334449
Morrison321446
Lyon311343
Itasca308245
Becker306841
Isanti303052
Carlton298344
Steele297211
Pine280316
Freeborn275923
Nicollet251241
Todd243830
Brown240037
Le Sueur230120
Mille Lacs225447
Cass217224
Waseca206317
Meeker205534
Martin186628
Wabasha18503
Roseau177617
Hubbard159740
Houston156214
Dodge15114
Renville146840
Redwood146327
Fillmore13638
Chippewa135735
Cottonwood133420
Wadena128120
Pennington125716
Faribault121216
Aitkin117633
Sibley116110
Rock115313
Watonwan11478
Kanabec106619
Pipestone100724
Yellow Medicine97517
Murray9408
Jackson92310
Swift87118
Pope7875
Marshall76615
Stevens7378
Lake72517
Clearwater71414
Lac qui Parle67916
Wilkin66410
Koochiching61711
Big Stone5093
Lincoln5022
Grant4848
Norman4648
Mahnomen4367
Unassigned43568
Kittson40421
Red Lake3534
Traverse3015
Lake of the Woods2131
Cook1190

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 358981

Reported Deaths: 5342
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk57492544
Linn20508311
Scott18171204
Black Hawk16156286
Woodbury14835211
Johnson1371072
Dubuque13438192
Dallas1120090
Pottawattamie10678140
Story1011545
Warren549170
Clinton538983
Cerro Gordo530580
Webster514686
Marshall493372
Sioux490468
Buena Vista469436
Des Moines454059
Muscatine445989
Wapello4247107
Jasper404865
Plymouth392277
Lee372051
Marion355967
Jones293254
Henry292635
Carroll284448
Bremer276154
Crawford271235
Boone257530
Washington253344
Benton249254
Mahaska222745
Jackson219638
Dickinson215938
Tama211464
Kossuth206754
Clay192725
Hamilton191041
Delaware188739
Winneshiek186626
Fayette183832
Buchanan183128
Page181319
Hardin179538
Wright179031
Harrison178369
Cedar174722
Clayton167853
Butler165431
Floyd161939
Mills161820
Poweshiek153229
Cherokee153135
Madison152817
Hancock146429
Lyon145341
Iowa143723
Allamakee143444
Appanoose138147
Grundy138030
Jefferson137232
Winnebago136830
Calhoun133010
Cass132248
Mitchell129840
Louisa127741
Union125831
Chickasaw124513
Sac123618
Emmet120840
Shelby119433
Franklin118119
Humboldt116724
Guthrie116128
Palo Alto104021
Montgomery103636
Howard102221
Clarke99020
Keokuk97329
Unassigned9270
Monroe92128
Adair91126
Ida90732
Pocahontas85119
Davis82123
Monona81325
Greene76610
Lucas72721
Osceola69714
Worth6876
Taylor66212
Fremont5819
Decatur5709
Van Buren55918
Ringgold51516
Wayne48521
Audubon4839
Adams3264
Rochester/St. Mary'S
Mostly Cloudy
35° wxIcon
Hi: 38° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 27°
Mason City
Cloudy
35° wxIcon
Hi: 36° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 24°
Albert Lea
Cloudy
34° wxIcon
Hi: 35° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 25°
Austin
Cloudy
36° wxIcon
Hi: 36° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 26°
Charles City
Cloudy
34° wxIcon
Hi: 37° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 22°
Mild conditions this week
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Community Events