Donald Trump is all a flutter, as well you might expect, over the New York Times piece on Sunday, revealing that the White House is in possession of a manuscript wherein John Bolton tells all about Ukraine, to wit, that $391 Million in aid was withheld, pending investigations of Trump’s political rivals. Axios:
What he’s saying: “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,” Trump said.
“With that being said, the transcripts of my calls with President Zelensky are all the proof that is needed, in addition to the fact that President Zelensky & the Foreign Minister of Ukraine said there was no pressure and no problems. Additionally, I met with President Zelensky at the United Nations (Democrats said I never met) and released the military aid to Ukraine without any conditions or investigations – and far ahead of schedule. I also allowed Ukraine to purchase Javelin anti-tank missiles. My Administration has done far more than the previous Administration.”
And it goes without saying that Bolton’s commentary on Trump freezing $391 million in assistance to Ukraine until officials there “helped with investigations into Democrats including the Bidens” is fuel for the impeachment fire, providing a sound basis for Bolton to testify before the senate.
Why this matters: The revelations present a dramatic 11th hour turn in Trump’s Senate impeachment trial. They directly contradict Trump’s claim that he never tied the hold-up of Ukrainian aid to his demands for investigations into his political opponent Joe Biden. Trump strongly denied Bolton’s claims early Monday.