President Donald Trump’s attorney Jay Sekulow responded to remarks from military veteran and House impeachment manager Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colorado, about pauses on foreign aid, noting that aid provided to Ukraine by the Trump administration “included lethal weapons” that were not provided by “the previous administration.”
“The suggestion that the Ukraine failed to get any equipment is false. … There was no lack of equipment due to the temporary pause of its future funding,” he said, quoting a Ukrainian deputy minister of defense who oversaw the US aid shipment and said they did not notice any change.
“The made up narrative that security assistance was conditioned on Ukraine taking some action on investigation is further disproved by the straightforward fact that the aid was delivered on September 11, 2019, without Ukraine taking any action on any investigation,” he said, adding that aid to Egypt was withheld during the Obama administration in 2013.
“Sounds like this may be a practice of a number of administrations,” he said.
He noted other instances of withheld aid, including Afghanistan in 2019 over concerns of government corruption, and a June 2019 pause in aid to El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala regarding immigration.
He noted former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch’s testimony that Ukraine “policy actually got stronger” during the Trump administration.
“This all supposedly started because of a whistleblower,” he said, shaking his head as he closed his binder and left the podium.