President Donald Trump’s former National Security Adviser John Bolton knows about “many relevant meetings and conversations” surrounding Trump’s communications with Ukraine, Bolton’s lawyer told lawmakers Friday.
Bolton has information that House impeachment investigators do not know about yet, his lawyer Charles Cooper said in a letter to the chief House lawyer, which was first reported by The New York Times. Lawmakers have called on Bolton to testify as part of the impeachment inquiry, but his lawyer first wants a court to rule on whether he should be made to do so, given that the White House has chosen not to cooperate with the inquiry.
According to Cooper’s letter, which he provided to HuffPost, Bolton “was personally involved in many of the events, meetings, and conversations about which [lawmakers] have already received testimony, as well as many relevant meetings and conversations that have not yet been discussed in the testimonies thus far.”
Bolton did not show up Thursday for his deposition by lawmakers in the impeachment inquiry. He is one of several current and former Trump administration officials who have failed to appear for their closed-door depositions.
Bolton “stands ready” to testify if courts resolve the “conflicting demands of the Legislative and Executive Branches,” Cooper said in the letter.
Bolton, who was fired in September, would be a key witness in the impeachment inquiry into Trump’s pressure campaign on Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, one of the Democratic frontrunners for 2020, and his son Hunter.
According to reports in October, Bolton was at one point so concerned about Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s efforts to pressure Ukraine for political help that he ordered an aide to warn White House attorneys about Giuliani’s behavior.
Lawmakers released testimony Friday from closed-door depositions with the aide in question, Fiona Hill, a former White House policy adviser on Russia, as well as Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman.
Both Hill and Vindman raised concerns about Trump’s dealings with Ukraine, saying that officials conditioned a White House meeting with Ukrainian leaders on whether or not the country launched an investigation into Biden, and implicated acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney in this quid pro quo.
Hill and Vindman also testified that Bolton cut short a July meeting between officials from the Trump administration and from Ukraine, after the U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland began speaking of Ukraine conducting these investigations in order for the country’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, to get a meeting with Trump.
The House Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs committees will be hosting the inquiry’s first public hearings next week, when three State Department officials who have already privately spoken with investigators will testify.
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