Trump told GOP lawmakers Rick Perry suggested call to Ukraine president

Trump told GOP lawmakers Rick Perry suggested call to Ukraine president

Trump told GOP lawmakers Rick Perry suggested call to Ukraine president

The first whistleblower, identified as a United States intelligence official, filed a complaint about the president's phone call with Zelensky on July 25, claiming the president threatened to withhold aid to the country unless Zelensky agreed to do him a "favor"-dig up dirt about former vice president Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden".

Mark Zaid, the attorney representing the whistleblower who sounded the alarm on President Donald Trump's dealings with Ukraine and triggered an impeachment inquiry, tells ABC News that he is now representing a second whistleblower who has spoken with the inspector general.

The July 25 phone call led a US intelligence official to file a whistleblower complaint that set off a cascade of fast-moving events, ultimately leading to an impeachment inquiry into the president.

The administration suffered a week of damaging developments that included Trump publicly calling on Ukraine and China to investigate Biden and his son - echoing Democrats' accusation that the president was leveraging his power to target a political opponent.

In addition, Zaid said, a number of other whistleblowers have come forward in connection with the August complaint, as the inspector general, Michael Atkinson, testified before the House Intelligence Community last week.

The original whistleblower complained that Trump was "using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country" in the 2020 US election. They have called it politically motivated, claimed it was filed improperly and dismissed it as unreliable because it was based on secondhand or thirdhand information.

The White House had no comment.

"The great Scam is being revealed!" No administration officials appeared on the Sunday news shows to defend the president, while other Republicans focused mainly on attacking Democrats.

Additional details about Trump's July 25 call with Zelenskiy emerged Sunday.

"The Democrats are lucky that they don't have any Mitt Romney types", Trump wrote, painting the former GOP nominee as a traitor to his party.

The messages offer the fullest picture to date of how top diplomats and Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani sought to advance Trump's goal of getting the Ukrainians to investigate both meddling in the 2016 election and Hunter Biden. Though the timing raised concerns among anti-corruption advocates, there has been no evidence of wrongdoing by either Biden. Joe Biden is a leading candidate for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

Perry's name is also not mentioned in the White House description of the call, though it is noted that the summary was not a verbatim transcript and that it represented a record of "the notes and recollections of Situation Room Duty officers and National Security Council policy staff" who listen to official conversations. "You won't destroy me, and you won't destroy my family".

Energy Secretary Rick Perry had encouraged Trump to speak with the Ukrainian leader, but on energy and economic issues, according to spokeswoman Shaylyn Hynes.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Energy Department said Perry's Naftogaz efforts were above board and done to reform Ukraine's energy sector to ensure friendlier business dealings with Western countries. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) said Republicans were going to "wild lengths" to avoid being subjected to Twitter tirades like the one Romney has faced in recent days, in which the president called the Utah Republican "pompous" and an "ass". The person said Trump did not suggest that Perry had anything to do with the pressure to investigate the Bidens.

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