Trump Says He Doesn’t Know Marie Yovanovitch When Asked About Her Testimony to Congress
President Donald Trump said he did not know his own former ambassador to Ukraine as the House released damaging testimony from Marie Yovanovitch in the impeachment inquiry.
“Was Marie Yovanovitch the target of a smear campaign by your allies?” a reporter asked Trump as he was leaving for a Kentucky rally Monday evening.
“I really don’t know her,” Trump responded. “If you look at the transcripts the president of the Ukraine was not a fan of hers either. He did not exactly say glowing things. I’m sure that she’s a very fine woman. I just don’t know much about her.”
“You have to take a look at the transcript,” Trump said.
It is true that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky criticized Yovanovitch, but he did so after Trump claimed she was “bad news” in the July 25 phone call–according to the transcript memo of the call released by the White House.
“The former ambassador from the United States, the woman, was bad news, and the people she was dealing with in the Ukraine were bad news so I just want to let you know that,” Trump said in the call.
“It was great that you were the first one who told me that she was a bad ambassador because I agree with you 100%. Her attitude towards me was far from the best as she admired the previous President, and she was on his side,” Zelensky told Trump, implying they had discussed Yovanovitch before.
“Well, she’s going to go through some things,” Trump responds to Zelensky. Yovanovitch told Congress that she interpreted this comment as a threat.
Trump did not answer a follow-up question about Yovanovitch expressing concern to the administration about what Rudy Giuliani was doing in Ukraine.