Newly released documents from the State Department reveal several calls between Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani approximately a month before then-Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch was suddenly removed from her post.
American Oversight, a self-described “non-partisan” watchdog organization dedicated to investigating President Donald Trump, obtained the documents on Friday night in its lawsuit against the department.
Emails in the information dump also tie Trump’s then-top assistant Madeleine Westerhaut to Pompeo and Giuliani’s communications.
On March 27, Westerhaut connected a State Department official to Rudy Giuliani’s assistant, who had asked Westerhaut for a “good number” with which to contact Pompeo.
After several months of Giuliani’s smear campaign against Yovanovitch, the ambassador was told on April 24 to “get on the next plane” back to the U.S. She was subsequently removed from her position despite being widely regarded as a highly capable diplomat at the State Department.
Despite requests from department officials, Pompeo did not defend Yovanovitch after her ouster.
“We can see why Mike Pompeo has refused to release this information to Congress,” said American Oversight Executive Director Austin Evers. “It reveals a clear paper trail from Rudy Giuliani to the Oval Office to Secretary Pompeo to facilitate Giuliani’s smear campaign against a U.S. ambassador.”
Ambassador to the E.U. Gordon Sondland provided emails and text messages to House impeachment investigators last week revealing that Sondland had kept Pompeo updated on Trump and Giuliani’s scheme to pressure Ukraine into investigating Joe Biden.