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House Republicans present central defense of President Trump in an 18-page memo



Using testimony from the closed doors, as well as public reporting, the memo attempts to undermine several key arguments from Democrats describing Trump's alleged obligation in his actions against Ukraine, particularly in his decision to seize US security assistance the country in exchange for investigations into his political rival.

The memo marks the most centralized and detailed effort to bring the Republican counter-argument to impeachment that has been designed and will serve as the baseline for members to use in their defense of Trump as the impeachment probe moves into public hearings on Wednesday.

The four central defenses, detailed in the course of the memo, are as follows:

"These four key points undermined the story of the democratization of the president that President Trump utilized US security support and a presidential meeting to force Ukraine to investigate the president's political rivals, "the memo says.

On Twitter Tuesday, Trump recalled some of the Republicans' defense, pointing to Zelensky's comments that there was "no pressure" on him. to investigate Bidens.

Trump claimed that the investigation's focus is based on second-hand and second-hand witnesses – despite many of the witnesses who have testified behind closed doors with first-hand knowledge of potentially improper administrative action regarding US military assistance to Ukraine.

The President also reiterated his call for former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, to testify.

During the July 25 phone call, Zelensky addressed US military aid to Ukraine, which has been at the center of US politics since Russia and its agents invaded eastern Ukraine in 2014. Zelensky told Trump he was interested in buying additional tank missiles from the United States.

"I would like you to do us a favor though," Trump then says, according to a rough transcript from the White House. He then asks Zelensky to investigate a deterred conspiracy theory about the 2016 election and allegations of corruption by Bidens, despite no evidence of wrongdoing.
The conversation was part of a whistleblower's complaint that Trump abused his official powers "to request interference" from Ukraine in the upcoming 2020 election, and that the White House took steps to cover it.

Trump has denied any wrongdoing and has insisted that the conversation with Zelensky was "perfect."

However, other US officials got the feeling that there was a quid pro quo linking US military aid to the Ukrainian investigations, according to their black testimony before the House committees.
This included Bill Taylor, the best US diplomat in Ukraine, who had testified that it was his "clear understanding" that US security support for Ukraine would not be released unless Zelensky announced that he would investigate Trump's political rivals. Taylor is one of three officials scheduled to testify this week in public impeachment hearings.

CNN's Veronica Stracqualursi, Marshall Cohen and Jeremy Herb contributed to this report.


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