Press Release from the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today demanded Secretary of State Mike Pompeo explain what actions he and the State Department took when they became involved in President Donald Trump’s coercion of a foreign leader to investigate his domestic political opponents.
In a letter requesting the Secretary immediately testify before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Ranking Member Menendez posed a series of critical national security questions that remain unanswered after the release of a declassified whistleblower complaint revealed senior State Department officials were both on the line and briefed after Trump pressured Ukrainian President Zelensky to bolster his 2020 election prospects.
“This should shake anyone who has taken an oath to support and defend our Constitution,” wrote Menendez. “Yet it remains unclear what, if anything, you and the State Department did in response to this unacceptable behavior.”
Menendez also demanded justification for the central role the President’s personal lawyer, Rudolph Giuliani, has played in pushing Trump’s agenda in Ukraine as well as any engagement by Special Envoy Kurt Volker and Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland.
“In his call with President Zelensky, the President repeatedly encouraged a foreign leader to speak with his private personal attorney. Not a government official, not a diplomat, not a representative of the State Department. His personal attorney,” added Menendez. “As Secretary of State, you are charged with carrying out foreign policy for the United States. Yet it appears that our policy with Ukraine was effectively outsourced to a private individual pursuing the personal vendettas of the President.”
A copy of the Senator’s letter can be found HERE and below: