President Donald Trump assailed his envoy to Ukraine on Friday as a “Never Trumper,” days after the diplomat’s testimony provided new fuel for the impeachment inquiry launched by congressional Democrats.
“Here’s the problem, he’s a ‘Never Trumper’ and his lawyer’s a ‘Never Trumper,’” said the president, who went on to criticize Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for appointing the career diplomat, William Taylor Jr., to the post.
“Hey, everybody makes mistakes — Mike Pompeo, everybody makes mistakes,” Trump told reporters gathered on the White House lawn as he departed for South Carolina. “He’s a ‘Never Trumper,’ his lawyer is the head of the ‘Never Trumpers.’”
Trump then attacked the reporter asking the question. “And here’s the other problem, you’re with CNN and you’re fake news,” Trump added.
The president’s remarks came after Taylor provided lawmakers with an opening statement that alleged Trump and his top aides attempted to pressure Ukrainian leaders into probing the son of a top Democratic rival, Joe Biden, by delaying defense aid that the Eastern European country desperately needs.