NO SPECIFICS YET
(Oct. 3, 2019) — During a break after approximately two hours of closed-door testimony to members of the House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs and Oversight & Reform Committees Thursday morning from former “Special Envoy” to Ukraine Kurt Volker, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH4) told reporters that Volker described a different version of events involving the Trump administration and Ukraine which does not support the “Democrats’ narrative.”
Jordan did not elaborate further but indicated that Volker would continue testifying following the break.
On September 24, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced that the chamber would undertake an “impeachment inquiry” to presumably expand the investigations already under way by the Democrat-led House committees into President Donald Trump’s conduct allegedly stemming from a July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.
House committees have been seeking evidence of impeachable or other offenses in light of a 22-month-long investigation conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller concluded in March which discovered no evidence of “collusion” between the Trump campaign in Russia, as the FBI had alleged.
At a press conference on Wednesday with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, Pelosi told reporters that she is not obligated to hold a full chamber vote on formal Articles of Impeachment against the president. She and other Democrats claim that a “whistleblower” complaint from a member of the U.S. Intelligence Community substantiates their belief that the July 25 phone call demonstrated Trump’s effort to unduly influence a foreign government to assist him in his 2020 reelection bid.
A transcript of the call released by the White House on September 25 showed Trump asking Zelenskiy to consider reopening an investigation closed under what may have been undue influence from then-Vice President Joseph Biden in early 2016 by Zelenskiy’s predecessor, Petro Poroschenko. After the prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, was fired, Biden’s son Hunter obtained a lucrative position on the Board of Directors of Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian energy company, despite his lack of experience in the field and any appearance of impropriety which might have been perceived.
On Friday, Volker abruptly resigned his post after the House Intelligence Committee requested that he answer questions about the activities of Trump attorney Rudolph Giuliani, who has reportedly been investigating Biden’s relationship with the Ukraine in 2016 and his son’s position on the Board of Burisma.
In January 2018, in a discussion at the Council on Foreign Relations, Biden boasted that he was responsible for Shokin’s termination, which occurred, Biden said, after he threatened to withhold U.S. financial assistance to the former Soviet nation which for years has been plagued by government corruption.
On the South Lawn Thursday morning before departing for an event in Florida, Trump publicly urged China to investigate Biden’s dealings there as vice president which resulted in a reported $1.5 billion payment to Hunter Biden.
Giuliani, for his part, claims his investigation of the Ukraine-Biden relationship and dealings was sanctioned by the U.S. State Department and that he reported his findings to them through official channels. On “Hannity” Wednesday night, Giuliani said that the FBI is now investigating the issues he brought to State last fall.
According to Politico, Volker was not paid for his work as a Special Envoy. During his remarks, Jordan called Volker’s testimony “very impressive.”