Donald Trump's impeachment probe reveals new vivid details

Updated: Oct 17, 2019, 08:20 IST | Agencies | Washington DC

Nancy Pelosi said Congress will continue its investigation as part of the Constitution's system of checks and balances of the executive

An electronic billboard in San Francisco reads 'IMPEACH' with an image of American President Donald Trump. Pic/AP
An electronic billboard in San Francisco reads 'IMPEACH' with an image of American President Donald Trump. Pic/AP

Washington: The impeachment inquiry is revealing vivid new details about the high-level unease over President Donald Trump's actions toward Ukraine, and those of his personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, as the swift-moving probe by House Democrats showed no signs of easing.

The testimony from the witnesses, mainly officials from the State Department and other foreign policy posts, is largely corroborating the account of the government whistleblower whose complaint first sparked the impeachment inquiry, according to lawmakers attending the closed-door interviews.

One witness, former White House aide Fiona Hill, testified that national security adviser John Bolton was so alarmed by Giuliani's back-channel activities in Ukraine that he described him as a "hand grenade who is going to blow everybody up." Another, career State Department official George Kent, testified Tuesday he was told by administration officials to "lay low" on Ukraine as "three amigos" tied to the White House took over US foreign policy toward the Eastern European ally.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, despite intensifying calls from Trump and Republicans to hold a formal vote to authorize the impeachment inquiry, showed no indication she would do so. She said Congress will continue its investigation as part of the Constitution's system of checks and balances of the executive.

Giuliani dismisses subpoena

Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani on Tuesday brushed off a subpoena from the congressional impeachment investigation, ratcheting up tensions as Democrats build evidence of presidential abuse of office. Giuliani declared the inquiry "illegitimate" and "unconstitutional," risking being declared in contempt of the Congress as he refused to turn over documents demanded by three Democrat-led committees.

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