WASHINGTON (NBC News) – President Donald Trump insisted once again Friday that his calls for foreign governments to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, one of his chief political rivals, are not about the 2020 election.
“I’m only interested in corruption. I don’t care about politics,” Mr. Trump told reporters as he departed the White House.
That argument isn’t winning over others in the president’s own party.
Republican Senator Mitt Romney tweeted that it’s hard to believe the president’s “brazen and unprecedented” appeals are “anything other than politically motivated.”
House Democrats, meanwhile, have released encrypted text messages showing U.S. diplomats pressing Ukraine to investigate the Bidens and raising the issue of a delay in military aid.
In one exchange, the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine tells a group of other American diplomats: “I think it’s crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign.”
The text messages also show that U.S. diplomats signaled a White House meeting between the new president of Ukraine and President Trump was contingent on Ukraine opening investigations into the Bidens.
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