McConnell contradicts Trump: We’ve never spoken about Zelensky call
Democrats are using the call to bolster their impeachment inquiry into Trump, claiming the president abused his power when he pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate political rival Joe Biden.
McConnell has been one of the most outspoken opponents of Democrats’ impeachment inquiry, arguing it is hindering passage of a new North American trade agreement and that the president and his team are not being afforded procedural protections. After reviewing the rough transcript of the call earlier this month, McConnell said it is “laughable to think this is anywhere close to an impeachable offense” and that it’s “clear there is no quid pro quo that the Democrats were desperately praying for.”
But Trump said on Oct. 3 that McConnell had gone further.
“He put out a statement that said that was the most innocent phone call he’s read, and I spoke to him about it too. He read my phone call with the president of Ukraine. Mitch McConnell — he said, ‘That was the most innocent phone call that I’ve read.’ I mean, give me a break,” Trump told reporters.
McConnell was asked Tuesday whether the president was lying when he made that statement. The GOP leader replied: “You’ll have to ask him. I don’t recall any conversations with the president about that phone call.”
“I’ll let the two of them figure that out for themselves,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said when asked about the discrepancy between the president and McConnell. “When President Trump says something, I think peoples’ initial reaction … is skepticism.”