During Friday’s public impeachment hearing, former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch described how conservatives and right-wing media figures repeatedly disparaged her last spring in an apparent effort by Trumpworld to sully her reputation in order to justify removing her from her post.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) asked Yovanovich about former top Ukraine prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko, pointing out that she likely angered Lutsenko in her time as ambassador due to her anti-corruption efforts.
Noting that another former Ukrainian prosecutor general, Viktor Sholkin, also had a history of corruption, Schiff asked Yovanovitch: “Did you come to learn that both were in touch with Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s lawyer and representative?”
“Yes,” the former diplomat replied, adding that it was her understanding that Lutsenko and others coordinated with Giuliani to peddle false allegations against her.
“And were these smears amplified by the president’s son Donald Trump Jr. as well as certain hosts on Fox?” Schiff wondered aloud.
“Yes,” she answered. “Yes, that is the case.”
A few moments later, Democratic majority counsel Daniel Goldman highlighted the coordinated media attacks unleashed by Giuliani and conservative columnist John Solomon’s Ukraine articles, noting that Trump Jr. and others sent out multiple tweets targeting her.
“What was your reaction to seeing this?” Goldman asked.
“Well, I was worried,” Yovanovitch said, adding, “that these attacks, you know, being repeated by the president himself and his son.”
She also noted that she was aware that the allegations against her had received attention on Fox News primetime programming, pointing out that the accusation she was “bad-mouthing” Trump in Ukraine was untrue.
In previous testimony, Yovanovitch had said that she was told that the State Department would contact Fox News host Sean Hannity to get to the bottom of the attacks against her, something Hannity has loudly denied.