President Donald Trump asked the president of Ukraine to “look into” former Vice President Joe Biden and his son’s business dealings in that country during a July phone call that House Democrats are now investigating as part of a formal impeachment inquiry, according to a declassified memo released by the White House that summarized the call.
The memo, released Wednesday, shows that Trump urged Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky to work with Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and Attorney General William Barr to investigate the Bidens.
Trump and his allies have contended, without evidence, that when Biden was vice president, he improperly sought the removal of a Ukrainian prosecutor in an effort to thwart a corruption probe of a gas company in order to protect his son Hunter, who sat on the firm’s board.
“There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great,” Trump told Zelensky, according to the memo. “Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it ... It sounds horrible to me.”
The memo says it is not a “verbatim transcript” of Trump’s July 25 call with the Ukrainian leader, but rather recorded the “notes and recollections” of National Security Council staff who were assigned to listen to and memorialize the conversation as it took place. The conversation reportedly led to a whistle-blower complaint against the president by a member of the intelligence community.
Read the full memo here: