In a letter from 2016 that recently resurfaced, GOP senators echoed then-Vice President Joe Biden’s calls for reforms to Ukraine’s prosecutor general’s office and judiciary, CNN reports.
The letter was signed by Republican Senators Rob Portman (OH), Mark Kirk (IL), Ron Johnson (WI), and Democratic Senators Dick Durbin (IL), Jeanne Shaheen (NH), Chris Murphy (CT), Sherrod Brown (OH), Richard Blumenthal (CT), and called on then-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to “press ahead with urgent reforms to the Prosecutor General’s office and judiciary.”
As CNN points out, the letter undermines Trump’s, as well as the pro-Trump punditry’s “baseless attack” that Biden pressured the Ukrainians to fire a prosecutor who was investigating a Ukrainian natural gas company that his son, Hunter Biden, sat on the board of.
“Succeeding in these reforms will show Russian President Vladimir Putin that an independent, transparent and democratic Ukraine can and will succeed,” the letter reads. “It also offers a stark alternative to the authoritarianism and oligarchic cronyism prevalent in Russia. As such, we respectfully ask that you address the serious concerns raised by Minister Abromavičius. We similarly urge you to press ahead with urgent reforms to the Prosecutor General’s Office and judiciary. The unanimous adoption by the Cabinet of Ministers of the Basic Principles and Action Plan is a good step.”
The Ukrainian prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, was fired one month after the letter was sent.
Seemingly contradicting his former position, Senator Johnson signed a letter with Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley last week which in part asked Attorney General Bill Barr to investigate the allegations regarding Biden and Ukraine.
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