According to the Washington Examiner:
Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney admitted Thursday that President Trump withheld military aid to Ukraine in part because the president wanted the country to investigate a debunked conspiracy theory about the hack of the Democratic National Committee’s servers.
“As vocal as the Europeans are about supporting Ukraine, they are really, really stingy when it comes to lethal aid. And they weren’t helping Ukraine and that’s still to this day are not. And the president did not like that … So those are the driving factors,” Mulvaney said. “Did he also mention to me in the past the corruption related to the DNC server? Absolutely. No question about that. But that’s it, and that’s why we held up the money.”
Trump directly referred to a “favor” he wanted from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in the July 25 conversation that is the subject of a whistleblower complaint, but it apparently related to the 2016 election, not Joe Biden or his son, Hunter. According to the transcript, Trump asked Zelensky to look into cybersecurity company CrowdStrike’s conclusion that Russia hacked the DNC in 2016.
Jonathan Karl of ABC News followed up with Mulvaney today, asking, “So the demand for an investigation into the Democrats was part of the reason that he ordered to withhold funding to Ukraine?”
Mulvaney defended Trump’s decision to withhold the funding. “The look back to what happened in 2016 certainly was part of the things that he was worried about in corruption with that nation, and that is absolutely appropriate,” he said.