Volodymyr Zelensky and Donald Trump, 2019-09-25. Photo: Wikimedia
Four or more top U.S. national security officials were so upset by Donald Trump’s attempts to pressure Ukraine for Joe Biden dirt that they spoke to a White House lawyer with their concerns “both before and immediately after President Trump’s July 25 call with that country’s president,” the Washington Post reports tonight citing “U.S. officials and other people familiar with the matter.”
“The nature and timing of the previously undisclosed discussions with National Security Council legal adviser John Eisenberg indicate that officials were delivering warnings through official White House channels earlier than previously understood — including before the call that precipitated a whistleblower complaint and the impeachment inquiry of the president,” report the WaPo’s Greg Miller and Greg Jaffe late Thursday:
Those concerns soared in the call’s aftermath, officials said. Within minutes, senior officials including national security adviser John Bolton were being pinged by subordinates about problems with what the president had said to his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky. Bolton and others scrambled to obtain a rough transcript that was already being “locked down” on a highly classified computer network.
“When people were listening to this in real time there were significant concerns about what was going on — alarm bells were kind of ringing,” said one person familiar with the sequence of events inside the White House, who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss a sensitive matter. “People were trying to figure out what to do, how to get a grasp on the situation.”
It is unclear whether some or all of the officials who complained to Eisenberg are also the ones who later spoke to the whistleblower.
At least four national security officials raised alarms about Ukraine policy before and after Trump call with Ukrainian president [WaPo, Greg Miller and Greg Jaffe ]
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