Tags: Trump Impeachment | Ukraine | johnson | trump | ukraine

Ron Johnson Was Told Of Quid Pro Quo

ron johns speaks at a briefing in ukraine
Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis. ( Sputnik via AP )

Sunday, 06 October 2019 08:30 AM

Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis. reportedly said a U.S. diplomat told him in August the release of nearly $400 million in aid to Ukraine was contingent on an investigation related to U.S. elections wanted by President Donald Trump and his allies.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Johnson, who supports aid to Ukraine and is the chairman of a Senate subcommittee with jurisdiction over the region, said Trump denied there was any such link to aid.

“He said, ‘Expletive deleted — No way. I would never do that. Who told you that?” Johnson told the Journal, adding he learned of the arrangement from Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union.

Before the Journal story was published, Johnson told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel he asked Trump on Aug. 31 to "give me the authority to tell [Ukrainian] President [Volodymyr] Zelinskiy that we were going to provide that" aid.

"I didn't succeed," Johnson told that news outlet, adding Trump had concerns, including about "what happened in 2016."

"He was very consistent on why he was considering it. It was corruption overall generalized, but yeah, no doubt about it, what happened in 2016, what happened in 2016, what was the truth about that, and then the fact that our NATO partners don’t step up to the plate,” Johnson told the Milwaukee news outlet.

Johnson insisted the term "quid pro quo" wasn’t used, NBC News reported.

In his remarks to the Wall Street Journal, Johnson nevertheless said the administration had been working on an arrangement with Ukraine in which the country would appoint a new prosecutor general and move to “get to the bottom of what happened in 2016 — if President Trump has that confidence, then he’ll release the military spending.”

The senator said the suggestion made him "wince." 

"My reaction was: 'Oh, God. I don’t want to see those two things combined,'" Johnson told the paper.

The money was released in September.

The White House on Sept. 25 released a summary of Trump’s July 25 conversation with Zelenskiy that shows Trump asked his Ukrainian counterpart to look into the Bidens, and whether someone in the Ukraine might possess a server that contained some of Clinton’s emails, appearing to tie the award of aid to Zelensky’s willingness to cooperate with Trump.

Johnson has defended Trump's call, telling the Journal Sentinel he has "no concerns” and that Trump “wants to get the truth.”

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Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis. reportedly said a U.S. diplomat told him in August the release of nearly $400 million in aid to Ukraine was contingent on an investigation related to U.S. elections wanted by President Donald Trump and his allies....
johnson, trump, ukraine
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2019-30-06
Sunday, 06 October 2019 08:30 AM
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