Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told reporters on Wednesday following the White House’s release of its version of President Trump’s calling with Ukraine, telling reporters he had no issue with the phone call.
Graham said his only concern about the call was focused on whether Trump leveraged U.S. military aid to Ukraine to try to pressure the new president into looking into fabricated allegations against former Vice President Joe Biden. That information was “absolutely not” included in the call, Graham said, arguing he has no issue with Trump asking another world leader to look into corruption in his or her own country. He then veered to criticize the whistleblower who initially brought the call to the national consciousness with the complaint that reportedly centered on a “promise” Trump made in a call with a foreign leader.
“How is it not inappropriate the President asked the president of another country to look into a political rival who’s running for election possibly against him in the primary next year?” a reporter asked.
“I don’t know what you looked at,” Graham said. “I think it’s very appropriate for the President of the United States to suggest that you got a corruption problem and the prosecutor that was fired maybe was because he was corrupt or maybe because he was looking at something close to America here.”
Graham has "absolutely" no issue with the Ukraine call pic.twitter.com/MVWxkQO2yv
— TPM Livewire (@TPMLiveWire) September 25, 2019
The memo that the White House released on the phone call opaquely reveals that Trump not only asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to dig up dirt on Biden, but also to help discredit special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe. In the call, Trump also asked Zelensky to work with Attorney General Bill Barr on those fronts.
Barr released a statement Wednesday saying he only just learned about the call in recent weeks and has not had any communications with Ukraine nor Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani.