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January 29, 2020

Inhofe Submits Questions During Impeachment Trial

During the question-and-answer phase of the impeachment trial, U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) submitted several questions for President Trump’s defense team to make it clear that the president did not commit an impeachable offense.
 

Watch the question and response here. 
Sen Inhofe’s question as read by Chief Justice Roberts: “As Members of the Senate Armed Services Committee, we listened intently when Manager Crow was defending one of Senator Schumer’s amendments to the organizing resolution last week as he explained how he had firsthand experience being denied military aid when he needed it during his service. As you know, David Hale, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, confirmed that the lethal aid provided to Ukraine last year was future aid. Which would you say had the greater military impact: President Trump’s temporary pause of 48 days on future aid that will now be delivered to Ukraine, or President Obama’s steadfast refusal to provide lethal aid to Ukraine for three years – more than 1,000 days – while Ukraine attempted to hold back Russia’s invasion and preserve its sovereignty?”
 
The question was cosponsored by Senators Rounds, Wicker, Ernst, Blackburn, Tillis, Cramer, Cotton, Sullivan and McSally.
 
Excerpted Response from Mr. Philbin:
“…Multiple witnesses who were called in the House by the House Democrats testified that the United States policy towards Ukraine got stronger under the Trump Administration, in part, largely because of that lethal aid. Ambassador Yovanovitch, Ambassador Volker, others also testified that U.S. policy in providing that aid was greater support for Ukraine than was provided in the Obama Administration, particularly the provision of Javelin and antitank missiles, which they explained were lethal and would kill Russian tanks and change the calculus for aggression for the Russians in the Donbass region, in the eastern portion of Ukraine where that conflict is still ongoing…
 
“…The testimony in the record is that this temporary pause was not significant. Ambassador Volker testified that the brief pause on releasing the aid was, ‘ not significant.’ Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale explained this was future assistance, not to keep the army going now. In other words, this wasn't money that had to flow every month in order to fund current purchases or something like that…
 
“…That this was somehow denying critical assistance to the Ukrainians on the front lines right then is simply not true. Now, the House Managers have tried to pivot away from that because they know it's not true. And to say no, it was the signal to the Russians. It was the signal of lack of support that the Russians would pick up on. Here again, it's critical, even Ukrainians didn't know that the aid had been paused…
 
“…The testimony in the record is that the pause was not significant. It was future money, not for current purchases. And it was released before the end of the fiscal year…
 
“…It wasn't jeopardizing anything at the front lines. There's no evidence about that in the record. The evidence is to the contrary. Thank you.”
 

Inhofe submitted several questions during the question and answer phase. As his questions are asked, they will be sent in a press release. Please contact our office if you need videos in a downloadable format.

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