Kellyanne Conway says she doesn't know if Ukraine aid was held up over Biden probe
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said Sunday that she doesn't know whether President Donald Trump held up aid to Ukraine in order to pressure the country's new leadership to probe former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, though she said all that matters is "they've got their aid."
"It's not impeachable," Conway told CNN's "State of the Union" of Trump's conduct toward Ukraine. "And that's where we are now."
"And Dana, let's be fair, Ukraine got the aid," she told CNN's Dana Bash. "As you and I sit here, one presumes they're using that aid. The Ukrainian president said he felt no pressure. He never knew aid was being held up."
She repeated that point at numerous junctures of the interview, saying of Ukraine, "They have the aid, they're using the aid" and, "Here's what's unimpeachably true: Ukraine has that aid, they're using the aid."
"I feel confident that Ukraine has that aid and is using it right now," she said, adding, "I don't know whether aid was being held up."
Conway's comments come as current and former administration officials have testified before the House impeachment inquiry that they believe Trump tried to pressure Ukraine to publicly announce investigations of the Bidens and a debunked conspiracy involving Democrats and the 2016 presidential election by holding up military aid.
The top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, Bill Taylor, told members of Congress last month that Trump directed officials to tie foreign aid to those investigations. Tim Morrison, a top National Security Council adviser on Russia and Europe, who resigned prior to testifying last week, told Congress he was concerned by the July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and confirmed the "substance" of Taylor's testimony, two sources familiar with Morrison's testimony told NBC News. Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the National Security Council's top Ukraine expert who was also on the July 25 call, also told Congress last week he "did not think it was proper to demand that a foreign government investigate a U.S. citizen."
Meanwhile, The Washington Post reported Friday that a growing number of Republican senators are ready to acknowledge that Trump leveraged military aid to Ukraine to that the country would announce probes of Biden and Democrats, saying that does not amount to an impeachable offense, though it runs counter to Trump's insistence of no quid pro quo taking place. That comes as House Democrats last week passed a resolution laying out the next steps in the impeachment probe.
The impeachment inquiry was launched in response to a whistleblower complaint about the Trump-Ukraine call and the administration's subsequent response. Trump has insisted that no impropriety took place, tweeting dozens of times that the whistleblower's complaint was false. The Trump-appointed intelligence community inspector general deemed the complaint credible while the Trump-appointed acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire told Congress the whistleblower had acted in "good faith."