Impeachment watch: Trump used unsecured cell phone in scheme to pressure Ukraine

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Trump endangered national security while coordinating a pressure campaign against Ukraine.

Donald Trump made the protection of sensitive information a cornerstone of his 2016 campaign, attacking Hillary Clinton for using a personal email server while she served as secretary of state.

However, while in office, Trump himself is putting national security at risk by frequently talking to his personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, on phone lines that are vulnerable to Russian surveillance, the Washington Post reported.

One former Trump aide told the Washington Post that Trump spoke to Giuliani on phones susceptible to foreign surveillance "all the time" — and that it's possible Russia knew about Trump's attempt to pressure Ukraine into investigating his political rivals before many U.S. officials did. One national security expert told the Washington Post that Russia likely knows more about Trump's pressure campaign on Ukraine than the American officials working on the impeachment investigation.

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Given that Ukraine is at war with Russia, that could have hurt Ukraine even more — allowing them to leverage that knowledge to their own advantage in the conflict between the two nations, according to the Washington Post.

John Sipher, the CIA's former deputy chief of Russia operations, told the Washington Post that Trump and Giuliani's careless use of unsecure phone lines has "given the Russians ammunition they can use in an overt fashion, a covert fashion or in the twisting of information."

Here's what else is happening in impeachment news:

  • The House Judiciary Committee will hold another impeachment hearing on Monday at 9 a.m. EST, in which the counsels for the House Intelligence Committee will present the evidence they uncovered during their investigation.
  • Meanwhile, as the impeachment inquiry rages on, Giuliani is in Ukraine pushing investigations of former Vice President Joe Biden — the very issue Trump faces impeachment over.

Come back Monday for more impeachment news.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.