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Transcript Confirms Trump Asked Ukrainian President To Investigate Biden

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With a potential 2020 showdown with Democratic frontrunner Joe Biden looming, President Donald Trump asked the leader of a foreign nation to investigate allegations of corruption against the former Vice President.

The request was confirmed in the transcript of a call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky released by the White House on Wednesday.

"There's a lot of talk about Biden's son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that," Trump told Zelensky, according to the transcript. "So whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great."

"Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it," he added. "It sounds horrible to me."

Trump was referring to accusations that Biden improperly pressured Ukraine to fire then-Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin amid concerns he was investigating a Ukrainian natural gas company whose board Hunter Biden served on.

In response, Zelensky noted the next prosecutor will be "100% my person" and pledged "he or she will look into the situation."

"The issue of the investigation of the case is actually the issue of making sure to restore the honesty so we will take care of that and will work on the investigation of the case," he added, according to the transcript.

The release of the transcript comes amid claims Trump threatened to withhold military aid from Ukraine unless Zelensky conducted an investigation of Biden and his son Hunter.

Trump does not directly link the request for an investigation to U.S. aid in the transcript, although the president reportedly told his acting Chief of Staff to withhold aid from the Ukraine shortly before the call took place.

A day before the release of the transcript, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., announced the Democrat-controlled House is moving forward with an official impeachment inquiry of Trump.

Pelosi said she is directing six House committees to proceed with their investigations under the umbrella of the impeachment inquiry, saying Trump "must be held accountable" and "no one is above the law."

The speaker accused Trump of a breach of his constitutional responsibilities by calling upon a foreign power to intervene in the upcoming election.

Pelosi also accused the Trump administration of violating the law by refusing to turn over the whistleblower complaint that sparked the uproar over the call.

The White House is reportedly considering releasing the complaint to Congress, although conservative media outlets have already begun seeking to damage the credibility of the whistleblower.

In a post on Twitter following the release of the transcript, Trump suggested he caught the Democrats by surprise with the content of the call.

"Will the Democrats apologize after seeing what was said on the call with the Ukrainian President? They should, a perfect call - got them by surprise!" he tweeted.

The president previously admitted discussing an investigation of Biden with Zelensky but has repeatedly claimed there was "no quid pro quo."

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