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Official Said Trump's Ukraine Call Was 'Crazy'

"In order to fulfill his duties to the American people, the Constitution, the Executive Branch, and all future occupants of the Office of the Presidency, President Trump and his Administration can not participate in your partisan and unconstitutional inquiry under these circumstances", Cipollone wrote in the letter addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), House Intel Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA), House Foreign Affairs Chair Eliot Engel (D-NY) and House Oversight Chair Elijah Cummings (D-MD).

Sondland's attorney, Robert Luskin, said his client was "profoundly disappointed" that he wouldn't be able to testify.

The letter, published on Tuesday evening, condemned the impeachment initiative in the harshest terms yet, arguing it deprived President Trump of "constitutionally mandated due process", and that the inquiry lacked legal legitimacy, as it was never authorized by a House vote. He also said the move was "evidence that [the White House] fear [s] what he'd say", and could become "a component of a possible separate impeachment count for obstructing Congress." Why?

Sondland's appearance would have followed officials, including the former U.S. special envoy for Ukraine, Kurt Volker, and Michael Atkinson, the inspector general of the USA intelligence community.

"Previous Post-Schar School or Post-ABC News polls taken at different points throughout this year found majorities of Americans opposing the start of an impeachment proceeding, with 37 percent to 41 percent saying they favored such a step", the Post reported.

The White House has embarked on a newly clear strategy to counter the impeachment threat to Trump: Stall.

"I presume the calculation is that congressional Republicans are more likely to stick with Trump over stonewalling Congress than after they hear whatever Sondland would say under oath", she tweeted.

Trump has denied he did anything wrong in a July 25 phone call with Zelenskiy in which Trump pushed for an investigation of the Bidens. "Gosh, why would anyone not want that to come out?" At least three officials are scheduled to speak Thursday and Friday, including Marie Yovanovitch, the former ambassador to Ukraine who was recalled by the Trump administration, and two associates of Rudy Giuliani: Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman. "This wouldn't hold up in court, but the point is to waste time by forcing the House to go to court".

Democratic lawmakers have warned on a few occasions now that any efforts to avoid cooperating with their demands will be viewed as obstruction.

The letter comes the same day Trump intensified his fight with Congress by blocking Gordon Sondland, the U.S. European Union ambassador, from testifying behind closed doors about the president's dealings with Ukraine.



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