House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) has submitted to the Judiciary Committee a classified letter from an aide to Vice President Mike Pence, according to multiple reports on Wednesday.
Jennifer Williams, an adviser to Pence on Russia, filed additional evidence after her testimony before the House Intelligence Committee last month, Schiff said in a note attached to the aide’s written submission. Schiff said Pence’s office failed to declassify the document ahead of the House Judiciary Committee’s impeachment markup, which began at 7:30 p.m. Eastern time on Wednesday.
Williams’s submission “contains additional information concerning a September 18, 2019 telephone call between Vice President Mike Pence and President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine,” Schiff wrote. The contents of the letter have not been made public.
Pence’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
JUST IN: Schiff has submitted classified evidence to the judiciary committee ahead up tonight’s impeachment markup. it’s the letter from the Pence aide who filed additional evidence after her testimony. Schiff says the office of the vice president has declined to declassify it. pic.twitter.com/FjJM63xXZ0— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) December 11, 2019
Williams was among the witnesses to be targeted by President Donald Trump for cooperating with the House’s impeachment inquiry.
In a closed-door meeting with House lawmakers in November, Williams testified about Trump’s July 25 phone call with Zelensky, which is at the heart of impeachment proceedings. A rough transcript of the call shows the president sought Zelensky’s help with a corruption probe of former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter, based on unsubstantiated allegations.
Williams told House Intelligence Committee members that the conversation on which she listened in “struck me as unusual and inappropriate.”
Trump lashed out at Williams and accused her of undermining his presidency.
“Tell Jennifer Williams, whoever that is, to read BOTH transcripts of the presidential calls, & see the just released ststement from Ukraine,” the president tweeted, misspelling “statement.” “Then she should meet with the other Never Trumpers, who I don’t know & mostly never even heard of, & work out a better presidential attack!”
The Trump administration’s use of classification to hide potentially sensitive information has come under scrutiny in the wake of the whistleblower complaint pertaining to the president’s July 25 call with Zelensky. Reports in recent weeks have illuminated the “remarkable steps” the administration has taken, in particular, to keep details about Trump’s communication with certain foreign leaders restricted to a small number of officials.
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