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Schiff calls Trump tweets incitement to violence

AUSTIN TX- SEPTEMBER 28 Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi speaks with Texas Tribune CEO Evan Smith during a panel at The Texas Tribune Festival

The Democrats on Wednesday announced they would subpoena the White House for documents related to how Mr Trump urged Ukraine to investigate his political rival Joe Biden.

"I was on the phone call", Pompeo told reporters in Rome on Wednesday. House Democrats plan to issue a subpoena Friday to acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney for transcripts, recordings, and notes related to two phone calls Trump had with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in April and July.

House Democrats defended their impeachment inquiry into President Trump on Wednesday, while opening another front in the ongoing battle with the White House over documents they are seeking for their probe.

Pompeo has reportedly tried to delay five current and former State Department officials from providing documents and testimony in the impeachment inquiry. "Any effort to intimidate witnesses or prevent them from talking with Congress - including State Department employees - is illegal and will constitute evidence of obstruction of the impeachment inquiry".

When issuing a separate subpoena last week as part of the inquiry, the chairmen of the three House committees made it clear that stonewalling their investigation would be fought.

They said that if he was on Trump's call, "Secretary Pompeo is now a fact witness in the House impeachment inquiry".

President Trump on Tuesday slammed the Democrats' impeachment inquiry, claiming the process resembled a "coup" against him as elected president and USA citizens' constitutional rights.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday confirmed he had been on Trump's call with Zelensky and he asserted that the president's approach did not reflect a shift in U.S. policy towards Ukraine.

House Democrats "are investigating the extent to which President Trump jeopardised national security by pressing Ukraine to interfere with our 2020 election and by withholding security assistance provided by Congress to help Ukraine counter Russian aggression, as well as an effort to cover up these matters", Cummings said in a publicly released memo to House members.

Offering a more "constructive" suggestion, one user noted that President Richard Nixon was able to avoid the disgrace of full-on impeachment by resigning his post. Senior officials like Volker and Sondland also assisted Giuliani in contacting the Zelenskiy administration, with the department confirming in August that Volker contacted Giuliani to put him in touch with Zelenskiy's advisers at their request.

House Democrats warn that blocking congressional access to impeachment witnesses could itself be an impeachable offense. "It's been remarkably consistent, and we will continue to try to drive those set of outcomes", Pompeo told reporters.

"I hope he doesn't mean he doesn't want to work together to lower the cost of prescription drugs", she said.

Democratic-led committees previously subpoenaed Pompeo and Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, as well as documents. A trial on whether to remove Trump from office would then be held in the Republican-controlled Senate.