Dem senator calls for Senate to investigate Giuliani's planned Ukraine trip

Dem senator calls for Senate to investigate Giuliani's planned Ukraine trip
© Stefani Reynolds

Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyOvernight Defense: Shanahan exit shocks Washington | Pentagon left rudderless | Lawmakers want answers on Mideast troop deployment | Senate could vote on Saudi arms deal this week | Pompeo says Trump doesn't want war with Iran Senators demand Trump explain decision to deploy troops amid Iran tensions Senators demand Trump explain decision to deploy troops amid Iran tensions MORE (D-Conn.) said Friday that the Senate should investigate a planned trip from President TrumpDonald John TrumpGOP senator introduces bill to hold online platforms liable for political bias Rubio responds to journalist who called it 'strange' to see him at Trump rally Rubio responds to journalist who called it 'strange' to see him at Trump rally MORE's personal lawyer Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiPelosi hasn't returned calls to Facebook's Zuckerberg after edited video controversy: report Pelosi hasn't returned calls to Facebook's Zuckerberg after edited video controversy: report Giuliani evokes Joseph McCarthy in criticism of Pelosi MORE to Ukraine, where the former New York City mayor is pushing for a probe into former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenFive takeaways from Trump's 2020 kickoff rally Five takeaways from Trump's 2020 kickoff rally Sanders tears into Trump in response to campaign kickoff rally MORE.

In a letter to Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jim RischJames (Jim) Elroy RischUN nominee Kelly Craft to face confirmation hearing Wednesday UN nominee Kelly Craft to face confirmation hearing Wednesday Senate rejects effort to block Trump's Qatar, Bahrain arms sales MORE (R-Idaho), Murphy called for the panel to send a query to the White House for details about Giuliani's reported efforts to persuade Ukrainian prosecutors not to abandon probes that Giuliani believes could turn up information beneficial to Trump.

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“Rudolph Giuliani, the President’s personal lawyer, has apparently held meetings with Ukrainian officials in the United States and plans to travel to Ukraine for further discussions. As far as we know, none of these meetings are being coordinated with the U.S. State Department or other government agencies,” Murphy wrote in his letter.

“Reports indicate that promises have been made regarding U.S. policy as a quid pro quo in exchange for information. Has the private foreign policy engagement of Rudolph Giuliani or other private representatives of the President led to any official foreign policy decisions, such as the recalling of the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine?” he added.

The letter follows remarks Giuliani made to The New York Times on Thursday, where he said that he was planning to press Ukraine's incoming president not to abandon two investigations: one into the origin of the federal Russia probe and allegations regarding former Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortJustice Department intervenes, keeps Manafort from being sent to Rikers Island: report Justice Department intervenes, keeps Manafort from being sent to Rikers Island: report The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by MAPRx — Supreme Court double jeopardy ruling could impact Manafort MORE's work in Ukraine, and another into Biden's 2016 demand that a prosecutor step down.

"This isn’t foreign policy," Giuliani told the Times on Thursday. "I’m asking them to do an investigation that they’re doing already and that other people are telling them to stop. And I’m going to give them reasons why they shouldn’t stop it because that information will be very, very helpful to my client, and may turn out to be helpful to my government.”

Trump is reportedly seeking information that will discredit the now-shuttered investigation into Russia's election interference, as well as information that could hurt Biden's chances in the 2020 presidential election.

Giuliani last week called for an investigation into the former vice president's actions in 2016 after the Times reported on Biden's involvement in demanding that a prosecutor be fired, despite the official being involved in a probe into a company for which Biden's son worked. Biden's campaign told the newspaper at the time that he learned only of his son's involvement through media reports.

"Biden conflicts are too apparent to be ignored and should be investigated quickly and expeditiously. But the more important question is how deep and how high did the alleged Ukraine conspiracy go?" Giuliani tweeted.