President Trump said Thursday that he could read the transcript of his telephone conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to the Americans, in the style of the famous fireside chats held by President Franklin Roosevelt in the 1930s and 1940s.
"This is about a phone call that is a good phone call," Trump said in an interview with the Washington Examiner. "Eventually, I'll sit down, maybe a live fire TV chat, and I'll read the call log because people need to hear it, and if you read it, it's a direct call."
Roosevelt held a series of informal broadcasting sites known as Fireside Chats in order to, among other things, garner support for his New Deal policy and to keep Americans up to date with the course of World War II.
A public reading of the call log would mark Trump's recent attempt to thwart the impeachment investigation initiated by the Congressional Democrats against him. The president repeatedly rejected the statements of the democrats that he withheld from Kiev decisive military assistance to urge Zelensky to the investigation of the former vice-chairman Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
Several witnesses expressed concern over the call. Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, who serves as director of the National Security Council (NSC), privately testified this week before the congress that he was alerted by Trump's request to Zelensky.
"Everyone knows I did not do anything wrong." Trump told the examiner. "Bill Clinton did something wrong; Richard Nixon did something wrong. I will not return to [Andrew] Johnson because that was something before my time. But they did something wrong. I did nothing wrong. "
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During the interview, Trump said he was in charge of verifying aid to Ukraine, a country with a history of endemic corruption ,
"We give them money, we give them arms," he said. "We are committed to dealing with corruption."