President Donald Trump was quick to react on Twitter Tuesday to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s announcement indicating a formal impeachment inquiry will begin on Trump. He called the announcement “witch hunt garbage” and “Presidential harassment.”
Trump began tweeting immediately after the announcement. Soon after, he shared a video, which shows clips of a series of Democratic politicians calling for impeachment. Later, he wrote on Twitter Ukraine gave permission to release the transcript of the telephone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
“They don’t know either what the big deal is,” he said, referring to the Ukrainian government.
Pelosi made claims in her statement that Trump betrayed the oath of office of the President of the United States.
“The President must be held accountable. No one is above the law,” Pelosi said.
The phone call in question was between Trump and Zelensky on July 25, 2019. Sources told The Wall Street Journal Trump repeatedly pressured Ukraine’s president to investigate Joe Biden’s son. Trump urged Zelensky about eight times to work with Rudy Giuliani on a probe that could hamper his potential 2020 opponent, the newspaper reported.
A Ukrainian official said earlier in 2019 he had no evidence of wrongdoing by former Vice President Joe Biden or his son, Hunter Biden. The phone call did not involve mention of quid pro quo, such as offers of U.S. aid to Ukraine, the newspaper reported.
Meanwhile, a whistleblower complaint from an intelligence official prompted a standoff between Congress and the executive branch. The complaint centered around reports of a “promise” Trump made with “a foreign leader.” Two sources told The Washington Post the whistleblower complaint involves Ukraine.
Earlier in the day September 24, 2019, Trump said on Twitter he would release “the complete, fully declassified and unredacted transcript” of his phone call with Zelensky on Wednesday.
“You will see it was a very friendly and totally appropriate call,” he wrote on Twitter.
He called the announcement “a continuation of the Greatest and most Destructive Witch Hunt of all time.”
Pelosi responded to Trump’s planned release of the phone call transcript, telling CNN “it’s not about that.”
Here’s what you need to know:
Trump Calls Pelosi’s Announcement ‘A Continuation of The Greatest and Most Destructive Witch Hunt of All Time’ After Promising to Release Transcript of Call With Ukraine’s President
President Trump quickly reacted to Speaker Pelosi’s planned announcement of a formal impeachment inquiry in a series of tweets. He called the impeachment announcement “witch hunt garbage” and “Presidential harassment.”
He began the four-tweet series, saying he had an “important day” with the United Nations, which “the Democrats had to purposely ruin and demean.”
“Such an important day at the United Nations, so much work and so much success, and the Democrats purposely had to ruin and demean it with more breaking news Witch Hunt garbage. So bad for our Country!” he wrote.
“Pelosi, Nadler, Schiff and, of course, Maxine Waters! Can you believe this?” he continued.
“They never even saw the transcript of the call. A total Witch Hunt!” Trump wrote on Twitter, referring to a transcript he said he would release Wednesday between himself and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
“PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT!” Trump concluded.
He later shared a video, which shows clips of a series of Democratic politicians backing impeachment.
“It’s time to stop this nonsense,” Trump said on the video, in a clip of an earlier speech. “They think they’re gonna win. Did you see the one man? He said ‘It’s the only way we’re gonna beat him in 2020.’… Well, that’s a compliment, I guess.”
The video concluded with a crowd chanting “Four more years,” along with text that read, “While Democrats ‘sole focus’ is fighting Trump, President Trump is fighting for you.”
Trump later wrote on Twitter the Ukrainian government granted permission to release the transcript of the call between himself and Zelensky.
“Secretary of State Pompeo recieved permission from Ukraine Government to release the transcript of the telephone call I had with their President. They don’t know either what the big deal is. A total Witch Hunt Scam by the Democrats!” he wrote.
Earlier in the day Tuesday, Trump said he would release the transcript of his phone call with Zelensky on Wednesday, September 25, 2019. He also called the process “a witch hunt” in his earlier series of tweets, a phrase he often uses to respond to criticism. He shared a photo from Rasmussen Reports, showing he had a 55 percent approval rating.
Trump wrote, “I am currently at the United Nations representing our Country, but have authorized the release tomorrow of the complete, fully declassified and unredacted transcript of my phone conversation with President Zelensky of Ukraine.”
He continued, “You will see it was a very friendly and totally appropriate call. No pressure and, unlike Joe Biden and his son, NO quid pro quo! This is nothing more than a continuation of the Greatest and most Destructive Witch Hunt of all time!”
Trump further wrote, “The Democrats are so focused on hurting the Republican Party and the President that they are unable to get anything done because of it, including legislation on gun safety, lowering of prescription drug prices, infrastructure, etc. So bad for our Country!”
He lastly shared a photo of his Rasmussen approval rating of 55 percent, which he pinned on Twitter writing an all caps, “THANK YOU!”
The White House later released a statement to CNN saying, “Nothing new here.”
The full statement from press secretary Stephanie Grisham said, “The Democrats continue to weaponize politics when they should be working on behalf of their constituents, which is nothing new. President Trump is working hard on behalf of our country here in NYC while they continue to scream the word impeachment. Nothing new here.”
Pelosi Said ‘There Is No Requirement There Be a Quid Pro Quo in the Conversation’ Between Trump & Zelensky
Speaker Pelosi announced there would be a formal inquiry into impeachment against President Trump Tuesday, claiming he violated the oath of office of the President of the United States.
“The actions taken to date by the president have seriously violated the Constitution, especially when the president says ‘Article II says I can do whatever I want,’” she said in her statement. “This week the President has admitted to asking the president of Ukraine to take actions which would benefit him politically. The actions of the Trump presidency revealed the dishonorable fact of the president’s betrayal of his oath of office, betrayal of national security and betrayal of the integrity of our elections. Therefore, today, I am announcing the House of Representatives moving forward with an official impeachment inquiry.”
She is directing six committees to proceed with investigations into an impeachment inquiry, she said.
“The President must be held accountable. No one is above the law,” Pelosi said.
CNN asked Pelosi earlier in the day whether the caucus will stand down if the transcript reveals the phone call between Trump and Zelensky is less harmful than expected. Pelosi responded that no quid pro quo is required.
Her full statement said:
This is about the Constitution of the United States and many other, shall we say candidates of impeachable offense in terms of the Constitution of the United States. But this is the most understandable by the public. And It’s really important to know this. There is no requirement there be a quid pro quo in the conversation. If the President brings up he wants them to investigate something, that’s to — of his political opponent, that is self-evident that it is not right. You don’t ask foreign governments to help us in our election. That’s what we try to stop with Russia. It’s wrong. So it’s not only about how we make decisions about our foreign policy and our global security. It’s about undermining the integrity of our election.That’s A. B: I don’t think there’s a — I don’t know. I don’t think there’s a grasp on the part of this administration that the quid pro quo is not essential to an impeachable offense, but if you have sequencing, like a couple of days before the President withdrew the bipartisan support for Ukraine. Bipartisan enthusiastic support for Ukraine a few days earlier, he withdraws it, then makes this statement. President’s words way tons. Weigh tons. And just bringing up the election is bad enough. That there would be a quid pro quo isn’t necessarily in the conversation, but in the sequencing. So this is not a good thing for a democracy, for the leader of the free world to be talking like that, and I don’t even know if there are any scruples involved. That’s why I say they think lawlessness is a virtue and now want to export it to another country.