The president of the Intelligence Commission of the House of Representatives Adam Schiff said Tuesday that the pressures exerted on Ukraine by President Donald Trump constituted "a failed attempt to bribe Ukraine."
He criticized the Republicans for arguing that because eventually the United States did grant the promised assistance to Ukraine "that means everything was fine."
"The matter is no less dire because it has been discovered," Schiff said.RELATED
The highest-ranking Republican in the commission, Devin Nunes, accused the Democrats of being "polluting people's minds with folly."
Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, a witness who speaks in Congress as part of the political trial investigation against President Donald Trump, acknowledged on Tuesday that "I am taking a great risk" in speaking.
At the hearing in the House of Representatives Intelligence Commission, the military was asked if he was aware that he would be challenging "the most important person in the world."
Vindman said he was aware of this and did not hesitate to testify because "it is important here to do the right thing," which earned him a brief burst of applause.
The president of Ukraine declared that his country is tired of hearing about the investigation of the son of former US Vice President Biden.
In conversation with reporters on Tuesday, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy declared the Ukrainians are tired of hearing about Burisma, the company in which Biden's son was part of the board of directors.
Ukraine, he added, is an independent country "are its own problems and challenges."
Hours earlier, Ukrainian foreign minister Vadym Prystaiko said that what the country needs least is to be dragged into US domestic politics.
President Donald Trump frowned on Tuesday the political trial investigation that Congress is conducting, calling it "a disgrace" and "biased court."
However, he acknowledged that he saw part of the audience on television.
Trump spoke at the White House at the beginning of a cabinet meeting, while in Congress they spoke Lieutenant Colonel of the Army Alexander Vindman, advisor to the National Security Council and Jennifer Williams, adviser to Vice President Mike Pence.
Trump said he saw part of Vindman's testimony, which he described as inappropriate the phone call in which Trump pressured the president of Ukraine to investigate his political rivals.
Trump dismissed Vindman's statements and said Republican lawmakers "are showing off."
Trump declared: "I don't know Vindman, I've never heard of him."
The army and local law enforcement agencies have taken steps to protect Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, who is testifying in Congress in the political trial investigation following President Donald Trump, an official source said.
The source, who asked not to be identified, reported that the army took steps to ensure that Lt. Col. Vindman and his family are protected and that Vindman does not have to worry while testifying.
The source said that if necessary the army could take additional measures, such as transferring Vindman and his family to a base.
Two key witnesses in the political trial investigation following President Donald Trump have arrived at the House of Representatives Intelligence Commission.
Army Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman and adviser Jennifer Williams arrived, the first witnesses to testify at public hearings in a week that will be critical in the process.
Vindman wore his military uniform. Both Vindman and Williams, a State Department employee attached to Vice President Mike Pence's staff, heard the July 25 phone call in which Trump asked the Ukrainian president to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.