Republican Senator Tweets Video of Himself Saying Trump Never Asked Ukraine to Investigate Biden, Despite Video Showing Trump Doing it

Senator Mike Braun tweeted a video of himself telling a reporter that President Donald Trump never asked Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, despite the fact that in October, Trump publicly called on each to investigate the Bidens.

REPORTER: So you're saying that it's okay for a President to ask a foreign leader to investigate a political rival and withhold foreign aid to coerce him into doing so?

BRAUN: No, I'm not saying that's okay. I'm not saying that's appropriate. I'm saying that it DIDN'T HAPPEN. pic.twitter.com/nARMXL1KEz

— Senator Mike Braun (@SenatorBraun) January 23, 2020

A reporter asked Braun, a Republican from Indiana, if he believed that it was OK for a president to ask a foreign leader to investigate a political rival, after the first day of Trump's impeachment trial. "So, you're saying that it's OK for a president to ask a foreign leader to investigate a political rival and withhold foreign aid to coerce him into doing so?" the reporter asked.

Braun responded that he didn't believe it was appropriate, but also that Trump didn't ask foreign leaders to investigate the Bidens. "No, I'm not saying that it's OK. I'm not saying that it's appropriate. I'm saying that it didn't happen," he said.

Braun's office did not immediately respond to emailed request for comment.

Despite Braun's claims, Trump publicly called on both Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and China to investigate the Bidens in October. A reporter asked Trump what he hoped to achieve with his phone call with Zelenskiy. "I would think if they were honest about it, they would start a major investigation into the Bidens," Trump told CNN. "It's a very simple answer: They should investigate the Bidens, because how does a company that's newly formed and all these companies—likewise China should start an investigation into the Bidens, because what happened to China is just about as bad as what happened with Ukraine."

President Trump says he wants both Ukraine and China to investigate Joe Biden and his son https://t.co/61W3znhPM1 pic.twitter.com/dhC0tXKhww

— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) October 3, 2019

Braun called the case against Trump "weak" in his statement, after the first day, likening it to an unprepared college essay. "The case was built like a half-prepared term paper," he said. "Remember back in college? To get good grades, you had to know the process. You had to know what your professor was interested in hearing from you."

What we saw yesterday was a lot of visual aids and regurgitation of information we’d already heard. A lot of times, when your case is weak, you try to repeat it over and over and wear your opposition out.

My full statement today on day one of the impeachment trial: pic.twitter.com/KGwaDU533C

— Senator Mike Braun (@SenatorBraun) January 22, 2020

He continued to criticize impeachment managers for a lack of new information. "It was full of visual aids. It was full of regurgitation of information we've already heard, because a lot of times, when your case is weak, you try to repeat it over and over, wear the opposition out," he said. "All along, I've said that I'm going to be attentive. I'm going to listen to all the new information that comes along. I want this to end in a fair trial."

Trump
Donald Trump speaks to the press as he departs the White House for Florida on October 3, 2019. When asked what he hoped to achieve with his phone call with Zelenskiy, Trump told CNN, "I would think if they were honest about it, they would start a major investigation into the Bidens." JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty