Pompeo says State Department has given initial response to Congress

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo attends a news conference with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias following their meeting at the Foreign Ministry in Athens, Greece, October 5, 2019. REUTERS/Costas Baltas/Pool

ATHENS (Reuters) – The U.S. State Department has issued an initial response to a Congressional request for documents as part of an impeachment investigation of President Donald Trump, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Saturday.

“The State Department sent a letter last night to Congress, which is our initial response to the document request. We will obviously do all the things we are required to by law,” Pompeo told a news conference in Greece.

Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives are examining whether there are grounds to impeach Trump based on a whistleblower’s account that said he asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in a July 25 phone call to help investigate Democratic political rival Joe Biden.

Pompeo, who has acknowledged he listened to the call, said the Trump administration was “incredibly focused in making sure that we worked with Ukraine in a way that was appropriate”.

Pompeo, on the last leg of a trip to southern Europe, said there were “clearly politics” involved in the investigation.

U.S. House Democrats on Friday subpoenaed the White House for documents they want to see as part of their impeachment investigation.

Pompeo said there had been congressional inquiries in the past that had harassed and abused State Department employees by contacting them directly and seeking to have them provide documents and records.

“That’s harassment and I will never let that happen to my people,” he said.

Reporting by David Brunnstrom; Writing by Michele Kambas; Editing by Frances Kerry

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source: reuters.com