Impeachment Witness Alexander Vindman: Trump’s Ukraine Call Transcript Was Incomplete
Lt. Colonel Alexander Vindman told the impeachment inquiry on Tuesday that the public transcript of President Donald Trump’s call with the president of Ukraine was not a complete version of the conversation. The reconstructed transcript is a central part of Trump’s defense.
Vindman told the House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs, and Oversight committees that he wanted to add the missing details to the transcript before its release. Vindman is an expert on Ukraine and listened in on the phone call with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The excised sections of the conversation reportedly include further discussion of former Vice President Joe Biden and a mention of Burisma, the Ukrainian gas company that Biden’s son, Hunter, worked for.
Though the redacted portions of the call may not change the overall substance of it, they raise some serious questions about the White House’s approach to accusations of pressuring Ukraine. Trump and his defenders have repeatedly pointed to the ‘perfect conversation’ to deflect criticism.
Republicans and their media surrogates tried to preemptively discredit Vindman, who is an Iraq War veteran and Purple Heart recipient. Vindman was attacked for coming from an immigrant family, for having been born in Ukraine and for speaking Ukrainian.