President Donald Trump attempted to coerce an ally into doing his political work and betrayed the oath he took to the U.S. Constitution in doing so, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said Tuesday following the release of his committee's impeachment inquiry.
"This report chronicles a scheme by the president of the United States to coerce an ally, Ukraine, that is at war with an adversary, Russia, into doing the president's political dirty work," Schiff told reporters during a press conference on Capitol Hill.
"Americans should care deeply about whether the President of the United States is betraying their trust in him, betraying that oath that he took to the Constitution to protect our country and defend its institutions," he later added. "So, we should care about this. We must care about this, and if we don't care about this, we can darn well be sure the president will be back at it doing this all over again."
Democrats in the 300-plus page report accused Trump of persisting in his pressure campaign against the Ukrainians.
"Although [Ukraine] President [Volodymyr] Zelenskiy did not publicly announce the investigations that President Trump wanted, he remains under pressure from President Trump, particularly because he requires diplomatic, financial, and military backing from the United States, the most powerful supporter of Ukraine. That pressure continues to this day," said the report.
Schiff also said cell phone records show there was a coordinated "smear campaign" between a conservative journalist, Trump officials and Republicans against former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.
"Certainly the phone records show that there was considerable coordination among the parties including the White House – coordination in the smear campaign against Amb. Yovanovitch which cleared the way for the three amigos to take over a significant part of Ukraine policy," Schiff said.
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