WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Friday that he spoke to the president of Ukraine by phone in April, months before the call at the center of the impeachment inquiry, and that he was willing to provide a transcript of the call.
“I have the second call, which nobody knew about," Trump said, speaking to reporters as he left the White House on Friday morning, referring to that spring conversation. "I guess they want that to be produced also. ... I understand they'd like it, and I have no problem giving it to them."
Trump was referring to the three House committees leading the impeachment inquiry, which was prompted by a whistleblower complaint about a phone conversation Trump had with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelinskiy on July 25.
The president said that the White House counsel did not want to release "all this information" but that he did not object to turning it over.
“I had a call, I'm sure it was fine. I make a lot of calls. But I have no problem releasing it. I'm very transparent," he said, though he was concerned that doing so "sets a bad precedent" with foreign leaders who might worry about the privacy of their future conversations with the United States.
Trump said his first phone call with Zelinksiy was "very revealing," adding it was another "perfect" call.
On Friday, House Democrats released a transcript of investigators' closed-door deposition with Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the top Ukraine expert on the National Security Council. Vindman, who was one of several staffers listening in on the April call with Ukraine, described the conversation as "positive" and said that Trump "expressed his desire to work with President Zelensky and extended an invitation to visit the White House."
Trump also said on Friday that he is considering visiting Russia for its May Day military parade.
"I am certainly thinking about it," he said, adding that President Vladimir Putin had extended an invitation.
"It's a very big deal celebrating the end of the war. ... I would love to go if I could,” he said, though he added that the date will fall in the middle of the presidential campaign, making it difficult to attend.
Trump was scheduled to speak at an event in Atlanta Friday afternoon.