Johnson: Whistleblower Complaint ‘Exposed Things That Didn’t Need To Be Exposed’

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) speaks with reporters in the Capitol on Thursday, May 17, 2018. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
November 17, 2019 4:33 p.m.

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) complained on Sunday that the whistleblower’s complaint about President Donald Trump’s call with Ukraine “has exposed things that didn’t need to be exposed.”

During an interview on NBC News’ “Meet the Press,” Johnson lamented “the damage that is being done to our country through this entire impeachment process” against Trump over his scheme to withhold military aid to Ukraine to pressure Ukraine into investigating 2020 rival Joe Biden.

“And by the way, those individuals that leaked this, you know, if their interest was a stronger relationship with Ukraine, they didn’t accomplish it,” said Johnson. “Having this all come out into public has weakened that relationship, has exposed things that didn’t need to be exposed.”

Johnson, who visited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky with Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) in early September to discuss the delayed military aid, argued that he and other senators could’ve handled the situation on their own, and in any case, Ukraine ended up receiving the aid.

“So, this would have been far better off if we would have just taken care of this behind the scenes,” the Republican senator said. “We have two branches of government.”

The whistleblower’s complaint compiled accounts from several unnamed officials who expressed concern over Trump’s July call with Zelensky, during which Trump asked Zelensky to do him a “favor” and investigate Biden as the two leaders were discussing military aid to Ukraine. The complaint led to the sprawling House impeachment inquiry into Trump’s use of American foreign policy to help his own reelection prospects.

Watch Johnson below:

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