As Democrats in the United States House of Representatives move closer to commencing impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump over Trump’s apparent pressure on Ukraine to stage a bogus “investigation” of Democrat Joe Biden, Trump made a stunning confession on Tuesday — admitting that he did, in fact, hold back a nearly $400 million military aid package for Ukraine shortly before his phone call with that country’s president in July, according to a report by The New York Times.
In his comments to reporters, Trump came up with a new, previously unstated reason for withholding the Ukraine aid, denying that the move was meant to pressure the European country. Instead, Trump said he ordered the military aid package – designed to help Ukraine resist Russian military aggression in the war that has raged in Eastern Ukraine since 2014 — held back simply because he wanted European countries to pitch in more cash.
“I’d withhold again,” Trump said in an exchange with reporters at the United Nations on Tuesday morning, as seen in the video posted below. “I’ll continue to withhold until such time as Europe and other nations contribute to Ukraine.”
In fact, the European Union has sent more than $3.6 billion in aid to Ukraine since the outbreak of the war there in 2014, according to a Reuters report. That makes Ukraine the largest recipient of EU aid outside of any EU country.
After days of controversy and White House denials over allegations that Trump withheld military aid to Ukraine to pressure that country to dig up dirt on Joe Biden, Trump finally admits he withheld funds from Ukraine and says “I’d withhold again.” pic.twitter.com/fY3VIISKQo
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) September 24, 2019
Trump also dismissed what now appears to be a nearly inevitable impeachment inquiry against him in the Democratic-controlled House, claiming that Democrats want to impeach him only because “I’m leading in the polls and they have no idea how to stop me,” as quoted by The Times.
But as The Inquisitr has reported, Trump is, in fact, trailing badly in polls when pitted against Biden head-to-head.
In 22 head-to-head polls since April 25, when Biden announced his candidacy, Trump has trailed in every one, frequently by double-digit margins. According to polling expert Harry Enten, Trump now lags behind Biden by greater margins than any incumbent has trailed an opposite-party challenger since the World War II era.
Trump has also claimed that Biden should be investigated by the Ukrainian government because while he was U.S. vice president, Biden pressured Ukraine to “fire a prosecutor who was investigating his son.” But according to a CNN report, Trump is either lying about Biden or simply wrong.
Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, had accepted a high-level position at a large Ukrainian natural gas company, but the top Ukraine prosecutor referred to by Trump, Viktor Shokin, was not investigating the younger Biden. Instead, Shokin was viewed within Ukraine and by the international community as corrupt, and a major obstacle to anti-corruption reforms. Biden spearheaded an international effort for his removal as part of an attempt to curb corruption in Ukraine, according to the CNN analysis.