'Take her out': Recording links Trump to Ukraine ambassador's ouster, report says

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Trump eventually recalled Yovanovitch from her post in April of 2019.

A voice that appears to be that of President Donald Trump is heard ordering aides to "get rid" of us ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch after two now-indicted Rudy Giuliani associates told him the diplomat had been badmouthing him, according an audiotape reviewed by ABC News. Biden told reporters that Hunter Biden joined the Burisma board without notifying his father; there's no law preventing a vice president's son from taking global posts, just as Trump's children still advance his real estate interests overseas; and Ukrainian officials have said they found no wrongdoing in Hunter Biden's service on the board. I don't care. Get her out tomorrow.

"Take her out!" Trump reportedly said on the recording to Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, after being told that the career foreign service officer was "badmouthing" him in Kyiv.

Trump also tells the assembled guests that it is "ridiculous" and "wrong" that he can't hold political fundraisers inside the White House, saying it would save the government money compared to driving him the four blocks to his hotel.

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Evidence gathered by the impeachment inquiry shows Giuliani and his associates, including Parnas and Fruman, were part of an effort to press the Ukrainian president to investigate Trump's political rival Joe Biden, and Biden's son, on baseless corruption charges as well as a discredited theory that Ukraine, not Russian Federation, meddled in the 2016 presidential election.

This audio recording serves as a major blow to Trump's continued insistence that he knows neither Parnas or Fruman. Fruman and Parnas, who helped Giuliani pressure Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, were arrested and charged with campaign violations at the same time last October.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff spent several minutes Thursday afternoon focusing on the theory that Ukraine was involved in the 2016 hack of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), one that Trump has continued to mention despite his own advisers repeatedly pushing back on it as debunked, The Hill reports.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Friday defended the Democrats' strategy to preemptively address the claims surrounding the Bidens, calling it "brilliant".

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Parnas has previously described the dinner in interviews, saying he witnessed Trump telling a top aide, John DeStefano, to fire the ambassador.

In November, federal prosecutors questioned Bondy about whether his client had been operating on behalf of Ukrainians at the dinner with Trump when Parnas said the ambassador was bad-mouthing the President, according to people familiar with the matter.

The group then praises Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, to which the president says: "Pompeo's going to be good". He later says: "China rips us off for years and we owe them $2 trillion".

"He even had a breakdown and screamed, 'fire her!'" to another assistant, Parnas claimed, and the assistant replied, "Mr. President, I can't do that". Marie Yovanovitch, who was targeted by a smear campaign to get her forced out of Ukraine. Both Parnas and Fruman were ordered to turn over Ukraine-related documents to the House impeachment investigators, but refused.

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