Tim Morrison, the top Russia and Europe adviser on President Donald Trump’s National Security Council, is expected to provide one of the most revelatory testimonies to date in the House Democrat led impeachment inquiry on Thursday, one day after it became clear he will soon be leaving his job, according to a source familiar with the situation and a senior administration official.
On the eve of his testimony, Morrison told his colleagues of his plans to leave the administration, a decision that was his and has been “planned for some time” given that he was an ally of former national security adviser John Bolton, who was fired by Trump in September, the source familiar said.
If he appears before House investigators as expected Thursday, Morrison is expected to corroborate key elements of a top US diplomat’s account that Trump pressed for Ukraine to publicly announce investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, using military aid the country sought to fight back against Russian aggression as leverage, sources told CNN. There is not evidence of wrongdoing by either Biden.
Morrison will also become the second White House official to testify who was on the July 25 phone call when Trump pressed his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, to investigate the Bidens, according to a rough transcript of the conversation released by the White House and witness testimony of officials familiar with the situation.
Who is Morrison? Morrison, a lawyer, joined the administration last July as the senior director of Weapons of Mass Destruction and Biodefense where he was intimately involved in the Russia and North Korea portfolios.
This summer, he was tapped by Bolton to replace Fiona Hill, who had been the White House’s top official on Russian affairs. Hill testified before the committees earlier this month.
Morrison’s hawkish views align with those of Bolton and he has been described as a creature of process by some close to him.
Bolton always told those who worked for him that process was their protector and sometimes you have to listen to the person elected — advice Morrison adopted, sources said.
Morrison is a lifelong Republican described as a Reaganite and is referred to as “‘Bolton’s Bolton,’ he is really hard right,” according to one source familiar with Morrison.