Trump lawyer Giuliani at White House as U.S. lawmakers vote on impeachment charges


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump’s private lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, was at the White House on Friday, the same day that a Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives panel approved impeachment charges against Trump.

Giuliani, who has emerged as central figure in the Democratic-lead impeachment investigation, was caught on television cameras entering the West Wing.

The White House did not immediately provide a reason for the visit and a lawyer for Giuliani declined to comment on the reason.

Trump has asked Giuliani to brief Republican senators and the Justice Department about information he collected on a visit to Ukraine last week. Giuliani has played a key role in trying to collect dirt on a potential Democratic political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, in the 2020 elections.

Trump senior adviser Kellyanne Conway told reporters she was not sure why Giuliani was at the White House but noted he is one of Trump’s personal attorneys and had just returned from Ukraine.

Trump faces impeachment by the full House next week on charges that he abused his power to pressure Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son Hunter Biden, who was a board member of a Ukrainian gas company.

The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that when Giuliani returned to New York from Ukraine on Saturday, the president called him as his plane was still taxiing down the runway.

“‘What did you get?’” Giuliani said Trump asked, according to the Journal. “More than you can imagine,” the former New York mayor replied. He told the newspaper he is putting his findings into a 20-page report.

Reporting by Steve Holland, additional reporting by Karen Freifeld; editing by Ross Colvin, Jonathan Oatis and Dan Grebler

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