A whistleblower’s complaint sparked accusations that Trump had sought to persuade President Volodymyr Zelensky to provide damaging information on Biden, Trump’s possible 2020 election challenger.
Trump confirmed that the conversation, held in July, had addressed alleged corruption involving Biden and his son Hunter, and he floated the possibility that a transcript could be released.
“We had a very great conversation, very straight, very honest conversation. I hope they can put it out,” Trump said, repeating that he had done nothing wrong.
“The conversation I had was largely congratulatory, was largely corruption… and largely the fact that we don’t want our people, like vice president Biden and his son, creating… the corruption already in the Ukraine.”
The Wall Street Journal reported that Trump pressed Zelensky about eight times to investigate possible corruption involving Hunter, who worked with a Ukrainian gas company while his father was vice-president.
Biden said earlier that Trump’s actions appeared “to be an overwhelming abuse of power”. “I know what I’m up against, a serial abuser. That’s what this guy is.”
The Democratic Party has been split on whether to push for impeachment proceedings against Trump since he came to power in 2017.
But influential congressman Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said that his own reservations about impeachment were fading flollwing Trump’s Ukraine call. (AFP)