In a 15-minute exchange with reporters outside the White House on Sunday morning, Donald Trump confirmed that during a July 25 phone call with the newly elected president of Ukraine, he discussed former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, the Democrat now most likely to be his opponent in the 2020 presidential election. Trump said that he told Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky, that “we don’t want our people like Vice President Biden and his son creating to the corruption already in the Ukraine,” as quoted by Slate.
Trump is believed to have pressured Zelensky to order a bogus “investigation” into Biden, over supposed corruption accusations. A high-ranking Ukraine official confirmed this week that Trump was “looking for kompromat,” or damaging information, about Biden, as The Inquisitr reported.
Trump and his personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, want Ukraine to investigate charges contained in a conspiracy theory that had its origins in right-wing online media outlets. This theory claims that Biden pressured the government of Ukraine to dismiss a top prosecutor in order to halt an investigation into his son, Hunter Biden. But as The Washington Post has reported, the conspiracy theory is false.
In fact, Biden’s pressure for Ukraine to oust prosecutor general Viktor Shokin was part of an international effort to help stem corruption in Ukraine, and within that country, Shokin himself was widely seen as a major obstacle to needed anti-corruption reforms. His dismissal was unconnected to any probe of Hunter Biden’s employment with a Ukrainian oil company, according to international corruption expert Oliver Bullough, writing in The Washington Post.
But Trump made another, stranger comment in his exchange with reporters — one which he left unexplained.
In the exchange, as quoted by Vox reporter Aaron Rupar via Twitter, Trump claimed of Ukraine, “Somehow they were involved in a lot of different things that took place in our country.”
What did Trump mean by that claim? The answer remains unclear and no reporter followed up the question.
Trump’s 2016 campaign chief, Paul Manafort, is now serving seven years in federal prison for financial crimes connected with his political consulting work in Ukraine, raising one possibility of what Trump might have meant by his odd claim.
As The Inquisitr has reported, Manafort worked extensively for, and was largely responsible for the rise to power of Viktor Yanukovych, the corrupt, Russia-backed political strongman who was ousted from the country’s presidency in 2014 by a popular uprising, and is now believed to be hiding in Russia under the protection of that country’s president, Vladimir Putin.