U.S. Rep. Michael Cloud said President Donald Trump was “doing his job” during a July phone call with the president of Ukraine that’s spurred an impeachment investigation in the House of Representatives.
Cloud, a Victoria resident and representative of the state’s 27th District, spoke about the investigation into Trump’s phone call during a Tuesday interview with the Victoria Advocate.
The Republican congressman said he thought Trump was “within his jurisdiction” based on the information about the call that has been made public to this point.
In September, the White House released a partial transcript of the call with Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Ukraine’s president. Cloud said Trump’s offer in the call was an offer to help fight corruption in Ukraine.
“For me, when I read through that – The president’s doing his job, in a sense. He was elected very much to drain the swamp, so to speak, to investigate these kinds of things,” Cloud said.
“If there was no probable cause and the president just called with some obscure, ‘Can you dig up dirt?’ there would be concern there,” the congressman continued. “But we have the other president saying, ‘We’re trying to weed out corruption in our country; how can you help us?’ and so the president, with the information that we have available, was within his jurisdiction.”
Multiple House committees are investigating Trump’s phone call after learning of a whistleblower complaint that accused Trump of abusing his office during the conversation with Zelenskiy because he pressed for an investigation of Joe Biden, his political rival.
You can watch Cloud’s full interview with Chris Cobler, the Advocate’s editor and publisher, here:
Cloud said few residents in his district, which spans all or some of 13 counties in south Texas, have asked him about the impeachment process. Earlier Tuesday, Cloud addressed Victoria leaders at a weekly meeting hosted by the Victoria Economic Development Corporation. No one at that meeting asked Cloud about impeachment.
At that meeting, Cloud spoke about his ongoing work on Hurricane Harvey recovery and FEMA reform, border security and the country’s ongoing trade war with China.
Cloud and his team met with Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson recently to discuss ideas for low- and moderate-income housing, Cloud said at the Tuesday meeting. In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, advocates for the homeless have identified a lack of affordable housing in the region as one of the most lasting impacts of the storm.