Spoke to Ukraine Prez on corruption: Trump

Washington, September 22

President Donald Trump on  Sunday said he spoke to Ukraine’s new president about his summer election and the fact that “we don’t want our people, like Vice President Biden and his son” contributing to corruption already happening in the Eastern European nation.

Trump appeared to stop just short of acknowledging that he discussed potential Democratic presidential rival Joe Biden and Biden’s son, Hunter, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, during a July 25 telephone conversation that is now the basis of a whistleblower complaint against the President.

“The conversation I had was largely congratulatory, was largely corruption, all of the corruption taking place,” Trump said before departing on a trip to Texas and Ohio. 

“Was largely the fact that we don't want our people, like Vice President Biden and his son, creating to the corruption already in the Ukraine,” he said. A person familiar with the matter has told The Associated Press that Trump urged Zelenskiy to probe Hunter Biden, who worked for a Ukrainian gas company. The person wasn’t authorized to discuss the issue publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Biden accused Trump of “an overwhelming abuse of power” and called for an investigation into accusations the US leader pressured his Ukrainian counterpart to investigate the his son.

“I know what I’m up against, a serial abuser. That’s what this guy is,” Biden said. “If he sees any threat to his staying in power, he’ll do whatever he has to do. But this crosses the line.” Biden had demanded Trump release the transcript of the call with Zelensky while saying reports that the President sought to coerce his Ukrainian counterpart, if true, amounted to “clear-cut corruption.” — AP