The House Intelligence Committee on Monday released explosive testimony from diplomat David Holmes.
Holmes, the political counselor at the embassy, testified about the “meddling” by Donald Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani.
“I guess I would say that Giuliani was sort of meddling in Ukrainian affairs by asking them to open an investigation that would—could be perceived as meddling in U.S. politics,” Holmes testified.
“And that would -— and you’re telling them to stay out of U.S. politics, correct?” Holmes was asked.
“Correct,” he replied.
“And what Mr. Giuliani was saying was contra to what you were advising them?” Holmes was asked.
“We regarded the Ukrainians—we understood the significance of opening a new investigation of the Bidens and/or Burisma as being motivated primarily by a domestic U.S. political concern, because we were not aware of another reason, new facts or other reasons to initiate a new investigation,” he replied.
Holmes testified he delivered the message to Andriy Yermak, a senior advisor to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
“I distinctly recall advising Yermak to stay out of U.S. politics, and it was a consistent theme of our messaging. I’m not sure if I can recall another time when we specifically said to President Zelensky to same message. But what I will say is he understood that message, because he would repeat – not repeat it back to us, but he would say things like, I’ve got enough problems with Russia meddling in my elections, why would I want to go meddle in someone else’s election. I mean, he had internalized the point,” Holmes explained.
Read the full transcript.