Trump recalled Ukraine ambassador after complaints from Giuliani, other allies: report

President TrumpDonald John TrumpThis week: House kicks off public phase of impeachment inquiry Impeachment week: Trump probe hits crucial point Judd Gregg: The big, big and bigger problem MORE recalled then-Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch this spring amid complaints from his supporters, including that she was stymying efforts to get Ukrainian officials to investigate former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenImpeachment week: Trump probe hits crucial point Trump DACA fight hits Supreme Court Juan Williams: Honesty, homophobia and Mayor Pete MORE, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.

Trump's recall of Yovanovitch has been a focal point in Democrats' ongoing impeachment inquiry, which is largely centered around the president's July 25 conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, during which Trump called for a Biden probe while hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. aid hung in the balance.


Trump's personal attorney Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiImpeachment week: Trump probe hits crucial point This week: House kicks off public phase of impeachment inquiry Giuliani associate says he sought to pressure Ukraine to investigate Bidens MORE told the Journal that Yovanovitch had shown anti-Trump bias in private conversations and was an obstacle to getting Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son, Hunter. 

Additionally, Giuliani reportedly gave Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoIran lays foundation for second nuclear plant: report Pompeo knocks Iran's treatment of UN nuclear inspector Reagan statue unveiled near site where he called for Gorbachev to 'tear down' Berlin Wall MORE a nine-page document — dated March 28 — that included a timeline of Biden's dealings in Ukraine. The document also described Yovanovitch as being "very close" to the former vice president.

Giuliani's role has come under fierce scrutiny after a partial transcript of the July 25 phone call released by the White House showed that Trump wanted Zelensky to coordinate with the former New York mayor — as well as with Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrImpeachment tests Barr-Trump relationship Democratic senators seek documents on Trump's alleged call for Barr press conference The Hill's Morning Report — Bloomberg news shakes up 2020 race MORE — on the Biden investigation.

While Yovanovitch's departure in May from the eastern European country was framed as "planned” by the State Department, her tenure as ambassador was three months short of the customary three-year term.

A senior Ukraine official told the Journal that Yovanovitch "was doing everything by the book."

"I heard very bad things about her," Trump said when asked Thursday why he recalled Yovanovitch.

"And I don’t know if I recalled her or somebody recalled her, but I heard very, very bad things about her for a long period of time," he continued. "Not good."

Yovanovitch is scheduled to speak with House lawmakers next week amid their impeachment proceedings.