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Sondland notified Trump officials of investigation push ahead of Ukraine call: report

Gordon SondlandGordon SondlandGOP chairman vows to protect whistleblowers following Vindman retirement over 'bullying' Top Democrat slams Trump's new EU envoy: Not 'a political donor's part-time job' Trump names new EU envoy, filling post left vacant by impeachment witness Sondland MORE, President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSAID administrator tests positive for COVID-19 Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year DOJ appeals ruling preventing it from replacing Trump in E. Jean Carroll defamation lawsuit MORE's ambassador to the European Union, reportedly kept top officials in the Trump administration updated on efforts to persuade Ukraine to launch an investigation into former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHarris says she has 'not yet' spoken to Pence Kamala Harris, Stacey Abrams among nominees for Time magazine's 2020 Person of the Year Obama: Republican Party members believe 'white males are victims' MORE ahead of Trump's much-publicized July call with the country's president.

The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that Sondland updated officials, including acting White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyMick MulvaneyMick Mulvaney 'concerned' by Giuliani role in Trump election case On The Money: Senate releases spending bills, setting up talks for December deal | McConnell pushing for 'highly targeted' COVID deal | CFPB vet who battled Trump will lead Biden plans to overhaul agency Consumer bureau vet who battled Trump will lead Biden plans to overhaul agency MORE and Energy Secretary Rick PerryRick PerryChip Roy fends off challenge from Wendy Davis to win reelection in Texas The Memo: Texas could deliver political earthquake The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump, Biden blitz battleground states MORE, via email on the results of his efforts, which have become the center of House Democrats' impeachment inquiry.

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The report comes as top officials, including former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie YovanovitchMarie YovanovitchWhy it's time for a majority female Cabinet Giuliani associate Correia pleads guilty to making false statements Teenager who filmed George Floyd's death to be honored MORE, have testified that they were uncomfortable with a "shadow" foreign policy seemingly being run out of the White House by Trump and his personal attorney Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiTrump calls into Pennsylvania meeting to renew election claims Watch live: Pennsylvania GOP holds hearing on voter fraud with Giuliani, Trump campaign A way out of Trump's continuing crisis: a President Pence MORE.

The White House's effort to push Ukraine to investigate Biden has been viewed by Democrats as an attempt to solicit foreign interference in the 2020 election. Lawmakers have also taken issue with reports that the administration held up aid to Ukraine on the condition of the country launching an investigation.

Trump and his allies have consistently denied that aid to Ukraine, which has been embroiled in conflicts with Russian-backed rebels in Crimea for years, was ever tied to an investigation of Biden. They also argue such an investigation was not tied to Biden's entrance in the 2020 Democratic presidential race.