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White House to Pentagon: Order to hold Ukraine aid came from Trump, national security site reports

By Curt Anderson
January 2, 2020 2:16 pm
Category: Politics

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"The documents reveal growing concern from Pentagon officials that the hold would violate the Impoundment Control Act, which requires the executive branch to spend money as appropriated by Congress, and that the necessary steps to avoid this result weren’t being taken." --JustSecurity.org

Washington (CNN)In the face of warnings from the Pentagon that the hold on military aid to Ukraine could be illegal, an official from the Office of Management and Budget made it clear that the order to keep the freeze in place came directly from President Donald Trump, according to unredacted documents reviewed by Just Security.

The documents, including emails from officials at the Department of Defense and the Office of Management and Budget that were released under court order last month but were either partially or completely blacked out, offer new details about tensions between the two agencies tasked with carrying out Trump's unexplained hold on aid to Ukraine.

They also raise serious questions about why the newly revealed contents were redacted by the Trump administration in the first place amid congressional oversight efforts and court orders in Freedom of Information Act litigation.
White House budget official told Pentagon that order to hold Ukraine aid came from Trump, national security site reports.




(Just Security) “Clear direction from POTUS to continue to hold.”

This is what Michael Duffey, associate director of national security programs at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), told Elaine McCusker, the acting Pentagon comptroller, in an Aug. 30 email, which has only been made available in redacted form until now. It is one of many documents the Trump administration is trying to keep from the public, despite congressional oversight efforts and court orders in Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) litigation.


Cited and related links:

  1. cnn.com
  2. justsecurity.org

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