Let me now provide the Committees a chronology of the events that led to my concern.
Second, with the annexation of the Crimea in 2014 and the continued aggression in Donbas,
When I was serving outside of government during the Obama administration and after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2014,
Before answering the Secretary, I consulted both my wife and a respected former senior Republican official who has been a mentor to me.
First, the encouraging: President Zelenskyy was taking over Ukraine in a hurry.
And yet, I found a confusing and unusual arrangement for making U.S. policy towards Ukraine.
In late June, one of the goals of both channels was to facilitate a visit by President Zelenskyy to the White House for a meeting with President Trump, which President Trump had promised in his congratulatory letter of May 29.
President Zelenskyy needed to make clear to President Trump that he, President Zelenskyy, was not standing in the way of "investigations."
Bohdan, and then-foreign policy advisor to the president and now Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko,
In a regular NSC secure video-conference call on July 18, I heard a staff person from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) say that there was a hold on security assistance to Ukraine but could not say why.
Needless to say, the Ukrainians in the meetings were confused.
Ambassador Volker and me that he was happy with the call but did not elaborate.
After our meeting with President Zelenskyy,
That, however, would soon change.
Zelinsky met Vice President Pence at a bilateral meeting in Warsaw. President Trump had planned to travel to Warsaw but at the last minute had canceled because of Hurricane Dorian.
The following day, on September 8, Ambassador Sondland and I spoke on the phone.
Ambassador Sondland responded about five hours later that I was "incorrect about President Trump's intentions.
Before these text messages, during our call on September 8, Ambassador Sondland tried to explain to me that President Trump is a businessman.
I wish to conclude by returning to the points I made at the outset.
It is this second story that I would like to leave you with today.
And I am glad to answer your questions.