The crux of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump keeps falling apart.

Once again, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stressed that Trump did not blackmail or threaten to withhold aid from Ukraine if he did not investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.

From the Associated Press:

Zelenskiy is trying to save his reputation and distance himself from the U.S. political drama. In an all-day “media marathon” held in a food court, he played down suggestions that Trump pressured him to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden in exchange for military aid to help Ukraine battle Russian-backed separatists.

Responding to questions from The Associated Press, Zelenskiy said he only learned after their July 25 phone call that the U.S. had blocked hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid to Ukraine.

“We didn’t speak about this” during the July call, Zelenskiy said.

“There was no blackmail.”

Trump asked Zelenskiy during the call to “look into” Biden and his son, according to a rough White House transcript. Congressional Democrats believe Trump was holding up the military aid to use as leverage to pressure Ukraine and advance his domestic political interests before next year’s U.S. presidential election.

Zelensky explained he does not want to interfere in any elections. He hoped the phone call with Trump would lead the president to visit Ukraine. He wants a “no conditions” meeting.

The AP not only insisted “Zelensky is trying to save his reputation,” but also that the phone call transcript “embarrassed him” since the wire service thinks “it showed him as eager to please Trump and critical of European partners.”

Then the AP claimed “Zelensky appears to be playing to both U.S. political camps to ensure Ukraine has continued support no matter who wins the presidential election next year.”

OR maybe, just maybe, Zelensky is telling the truth, which means the Democrats, the left, and the media are making much ado about nothing. They’re just dragging Zelensky into their war on Trump and doing everything they can to remove a legitimate sitting president.

The Associated Press also left out valuable clips of the media event with Zelensky. From Fox News (emphasis mine):

Zelensky spoke at a daylong event with media inside a Kiev food market, and said he believes the transcript released by the White House is accurate and that he knew the U.S. had withheld $400 million in military aid due to concerns about corruption and concern for American “taxpayer money.” But the issue, he said, was never linked to Trump’s desire that Kiev rekindle an investigation into an energy company with ties to former Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden.

Zelensky also told reporters his country will “happily” investigate whether Ukrainians interfered in the United States’ 2016 elections – a topic Trump also broached with him during his July phone call with the leader.

Zelenskiy said “we can’t say yes or no” as to whether there was any interference without an investigation.

Zelensky, a 41-year-old actor, comedian and screenwriter elected in May, has sought to reverse his country’s image as a hotbed of corruption. He told reporters Thursday that the main purpose of his conversation with Trump was to set up a meeting with the American president and show reform measures were in place in Ukraine.

“We just wanted to establish relations,” he said, adding at one point, “the story with Burisma has nothing to do with weapons.”

The transcript came out on September 25. It showed no blackmail and a cordial conversation between two presidents.

Later that day, in a meeting with Trump, Zelensky said “nobody pushed me” to start an investigation into Biden.

 
 
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