The Latest: Former Trump Russia adviser to meet with Dems

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Lindsey Graham

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., takes questions from reporters following a closed-door briefing on Iran, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump (all times local):

10:30 p.m.

A former White House adviser who focused on Russia is expected to meet with three House committees behind closed doors Monday as part of Democrats’ impeachment inquiry.

That’s according to an official working on the impeachment inquiry who requested anonymity to discuss the confidential meeting.

Fiona Hill left the White House earlier this year. As an adviser to President Donald Trump, she traveled to Russia in April to meet with several officials, including President Vladimir Putin’s foreign affairs adviser.

The impeachment probe is focused on Trump’s interactions with Ukraine. In a July call, he asked Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelenskiy to investigate the family of political rival Joe Biden and to probe Ukraine’s role in the 2016 U.S. election.

— Mary Clare Jalonick

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8:15 p.m.

Former Congressman Trey Gowdy has joined President Donald Trump’s legal team as House Democrats undertake impeachment proceedings.

That’s according to a statement Wednesday night from one of Trump’s personal lawyers, Jay Sekulow.

Gowdy, a Republican from South Carolina, previously led the House Oversight and Government Reform committee and chaired a special panel that investigated the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya.

Sekulow says in his statement that Gowdy’s “command of the law is well known and his service on Capitol Hill will be a great asset as a member of our team.”

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4:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump is predicting that his impeachment fight with House Democrats could end up at the Supreme Court.

Trump is answering questions on the White House’s refusal to cooperate with the impeachment inquiry into his dealings with Ukraine.

His lawyers sent a letter to House Democratic leaders Tuesday declaring a full halt to cooperation with what the administration termed an “illegitimate” probe, in part because a formal vote has not taken place.

Officials declined to say Tuesday what it would take for the White House to change its mind.

But Trump says he might consider cooperating if there is a vote, but only “if Republicans,” who are a minority, “get a fair shake” and additional power.

He says, “We would, if they give us our rights.”

9:05 a.m.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham says he doesn’t think there’s anything impeachable in the transcript of a July phone call between President Donald Trump and Ukraine’s leader in which Trump asked for “a favor” while withholding military aid.

The South Carolina senator says he’s going to ask his Republican colleagues to sign a letter to Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi saying, “We do not believe the transcript of the phone call between the president and the Ukraine is an impeachable offense.”

House Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry focusing partly on whether Trump abused his powers and sought help from a foreign government to undermine Democratic rival Joe Biden and help his own reelection effort. Pelosi says such actions would be a “betrayal” of Trump’s oath of office.

Graham said Wednesday on Fox News Channel’s “Fox & Friends” he wants Pelosi to know Republican senators “are not gonna impeach this president based on this transcript.”

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12:30 a.m.

House Democrats are waiting to see if the Trump administration will block the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine from speaking to their investigators.

Marie Yovanovitch was recalled from the post and is scheduled to be deposed Friday.

Whether Yovanovitch will appear has been thrown into question by the White House’s assertion that it will not cooperate with what it now considers an illegitimate impeachment inquiry of the president.

The ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sondland, had been scheduled for an interview Tuesday before a joint House committee taking depositions in the impeachment probe. Hours before his appearance, the administration blocked his testimony. House Democrats then subpoenaed Sondland, setting up another clash between the two branches of government.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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