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Trump attacks Marie Jovanovic as she calls his behavior "intimidating"



Details of the July 26 interview were revealed by Holmes in his opening statement to CNN's impeachment investigators.

Holmes said at the end of the conversation, Sundland told other attendants present that Trump did not "give an opinion" about Ukraine and was primarily interested in the "Biden investigation," which was prompted by Trump's personal lawyer Rudolf W. Gillian.

Holmes, a political adviser to the US Embassy in Ukraine, was with Sondland at a restaurant in Kiev on July 26, when the ambassador called Trump to inform him of the status of his meetings with Ukrainian officials in Kiev, including with President Vladimir Zelensky.

Sondland told Trump, according to Holmes, that Zelensky

"So he'll do the investigation," Trump asked according to Holmes. "He'll do it, Sondland replied.

Holmes told investigators he could hear the President's voice through the telephone's handset. It was not on the speakers, but Sundland kept it out of his head because he was so loud.

The call bill prompts a new witness of facts with first-hand allegations of an impeachment investigation that Republicans have attacked as second-and-third-party bills. He also potentially supports the Democrats' argument that Trump is directly involved in what they called a bribery scheme, with the president using military aid and a visit to the White House to get the new Ukrainian president to launch investigations into Trump's political rivals .

Holmes, a career diplomat, has a reputation for speaking to higher minds, regardless of which party controls the presidency. He won the 201

4 Disturbance Award for President Barack Obama's policy on Afghanistan, where Holmes served. The honor of "constructive disagreement" acknowledges mid-level State Department officials who use the internal process to note the problems they are witnessing, which in his case was about how Obama said he was stifling decision-making for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

His record of dissent in the Democratic administration may complicate Republican efforts to portray him as sympathetic to the Obama administration, a tactic used against other career officials.

Earlier Friday, MPs heard from former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Jovanovic in a public hearing, where she said that when she read about Trump talking to her Ukrainian counterpart in a phone call in July – she says ominously that "She will go through some things" – the color drained from her face.

"That sounded like a threat," she says.

Even as Jovanovic testifies, the president continues to follow her, writing on Twitter: "Everywhere, Marie Jovanovic

The President's disgrace to a widely respected Foreign Service employee – while she calmly but violently condemned earlier ones. his attacks against her – sparked widespread criticism, with many Democratic lawmakers calling him a witness.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Reporter Adam B. Schiff (D-Calif) told reporters during a recess hearing that the nation saw "intimidation of witnesses in real time" by the president.

The Conservatives also criticized his tweet.

Speaking on Fox News, former Independent Attorney Ken Star, a frequent Trump advocate, said the president "was not advised by a lawyer to decide to make this tweet. Extremely poor judgment. "

Jovanovic also described in detail how he felt he had read a rough transcript of Trump's July telephone conversation with Zelensky in September – and learned that the two world leaders had discussed it.

Call, Trump called Jovanovic "bad news," and then ominously added, "She'll go through some things."

Jovanovic testifies that when she first read those words, a friend who at the time was was with her, told her it looked like

"I even had a physical reaction," she said. "Even now the words are failing me."

She said Trump's statements sound like "an unclear threat, so I wondered what that meant."

"I didn't sound right," she said. "That the President of the United States would speak of such an ambassador to a foreign head of state. And it was me! I couldn't believe it. "

While speaking, back at the White House, where aides said Trump had no plans to watch the process, Trump tweeted.

" She started in Somalia, how did you go? "Trump added, citing one of the many heavy-handed publications that the veteran diplomat has made throughout his 33-year career.

"Then fast forward to Ukraine, where the new Ukrainian president spoke unfavorably of her in my second telephone conversation with him," Trump continued. "The absolute president's absolute right is to appoint ambassadors."

In the hearing room, Schiff informed Jovanovic that the president was tweaking her, even when she spoke, and said he wanted to give her an opportunity to respond.

At first, she seemed confused. Schiff began to read aloud. A small smile filled Jovanovic's face when he heard the president accuse her of problems in war-torn Somalia.

"I don't think I have such authority," she replied. "Not in Mogadishu, Somalia. Not elsewhere. "

She went on to say that she believed that she and other American diplomats had made things" demonstrably better "in the nations where they served, especially in Ukraine, which she said made progress in strengthening democratic institutions in recent years.

But, she testified, the president's attacks were heavy.

"It's very scary," she said. "I cannot speak to what the president is trying to do. But I think the effect is to be frightening. "

Karun Demirijan contributed to this report.


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